Due to the continued global spread of the COVID19 virus and the associated impact upon public health and safely in Japan, reservations for all tours and experience programs will be SUSPENDED until May 2020, or until the situation improves and relevant restrictions upon travel are lifted.
We look forward to welcoming you back to Tohoku as soon as possible. In the meantime, please stay safe and well!
~ Inoutbound Sendai Matsushima Inc.
3 to 4 hours
If you’ve visited Japan before you have probably been to countless shrines and temples and left feeling ‘shrined out’.
Delve into a deeper experience of the Shinto religion by receiving a formal blessing at one of the most important spiritual hubs in northern Japan, the 1200 year old Shiogama Shrine.
Discover the essence of Shinto as you learn about the history of the religion, the symbolism behind many of the objects and rituals you’ve seen at shrines across Japan, and the ways in which this same essence is very much prevalent in the daily lifestyle of the Japanese people.
After receiving the formal blessing, continue your exploration further by indulging in a local lunch based on the Shinto concept of ‘Naorai’, where people become closer to ‘Kamisama’ (the Shinto God) through consuming the same offerings presented during the ceremony.
Finally, take a walk through the town of Shiogama and uncover the essence of Shinto present in the daily life of the towns people.
Meet your guide in front of the ticket gates at Hon-Shiogama Shrine. Walk through the town area together to Shiogama Shrine (approx 15 mins).
Once at the shrine, be greeted by the chief priest who will provide a short lecture about the Shinto religion, including the steps and symbolism involved in the formal blessing ceremony.
Enter the main grounds of the shrine. After cleansing yourself at the water-font, enter the main hall of the shrine for the ceremony.
Receive the formal blessing, including a traditional ‘Kagura’ dance and offering of ‘Omiki’, ceremonial sake.
Based on the traditional Shinto concept of ‘Naorai’, enjoy a lunch featuring the food and drink typically presented to the Gods of the shrine as an offering.
Consuming the same offerings presented to ‘Kamisama’ (the Shinto God) is said to bring people closer to God.
Offerings typically feature local produce, rice and sake. As Shiogama is famous for its high quality seafood, your lunch will feature fresh local sushi and sake!
Enjoy a town-walk of Shiogama to further discover the deep connections between the Shinto religion and daily lifestyle in Shiogama.
Visits will include sake-tasting at Urakasumi Sake Brewery (the producer of the ceremonial sake of Shiogama Shrine) and Yabe-en tea house.
Receive your gifts of purifying salt from Shiogama Shrine and a bottle of high-grade tea.
Tour ends back at Hon-Shiogama Station.