Yakuonhachiman Shrine – Nara
In the town of Yamato Koriyama in the western Nara prefecture I visited the Yakuonhachiman Shrine (薬園八幡神社) which was originally founded in the year 750 and then moved to its present location in 1491. I don’t know much of the history of this shrine, but it is a gorgeous shrine and right between the two stations of Koriyama making it a good spot to visit when sight seeing the area. It is very difficult to get good photos of Japanese traditional buildings and sites in most weathers, so I had to focus on details for this one. The ema, or votive plates of this shrine is also a little bit unusual. Many people who come here do so bless their newborn children, and many ema had photos of the babies! I don’t think I have seen that at any other shrines in Japan. The Yakuonhachiman also had a very impressive collection of lanterns, many many more than most other shrines. I would love to see their festivals!