Get up early for a peaceful trek to the top of Mount Inari on trails that snake through thousands of vermilion torii, the traditional gates that usually mark the entrance to Shinto shrines.
Dedicated to the gods of rice and business, Fushimi-Inari is the main shrine of more than 30,000 such shrines in Japan. To ensure happiness and success in business, many companies and individuals make annual offerings here. Their names are inscribed on the 10,000 or so vermilion-colored Torii, lining the paths throughout this complex.
The shrine has existed since the early 8th century (711AD) but all of the buildings are more recent.The complex sits at the base of Inari-san (Mt Inari) and includes trails up the mountain to many other smaller shrines.
Starting from Fushimi Inari Taisha, a shrine at the base of the mountain dedicated to the Shinto kami (spirit) of rice and prosperity, ascend the path passing under torii spaced so closely together that it sometimes feels like walking through a tunnel.
To scale the summit and return down the winding wooded trails, allow two to three hours.