Shrines and temples are a large part of Japanese peoples’ lives throughout the year, so a shrine and temple photography tour is an excellent way to introduce yourself to Japanese culture while taking amazing photographs.
Whether devout or more secular, Japanese people visit shrines from the first day of the year for a fresh start and to invite prosperity. It’s called ‘hatsumoude’. The process is Japanese people’s quiet hope for prosperity for the new year, and the decorations adorning the local shrines are spectacular photo ops. And if you enjoy seeing kimono-clad Japanese dutifully making their way to or returning from the shrine, this is an excellent way to capture rich cultural traditions during a winter photo tour.
Shrines also have ‘omikuji’, or fortunes that predict what good fortune or less than auspicious events may be on the horizon, and in the case of needed protection, many small shrines have ‘omamoris’ or charms to ward off any less than desirable happenings. The fortunes are then often tied off to a nearby display board after being read, especially when the fortune is less than advantageous. The sight of all the fortunes being attached to the display creates another shutter chance as part of a photo tour. Your Japan Dreamscapes (JDS) photo tour leader will help you navigate the shrine or temple grounds and take spectacular photos.
The shrine and temple grounds are always perfectly maintained as well providing autumn leaves for fall photography tours, and in spring the grounds provide refreshing green landscape to photograph as part of the shrine and temple tour.
Every part of visiting a shrine and temple is a bit magical. Allow your JDS photo workshop guide to show you some of Japan’s most photogenic.