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About Izumo

Izumo is a fascinating place. Land of legends, the province of the gods, the birthplace of Japan – these are just a few of the words used to describe this scenic city along the Sea of Japan. If you’re a Japanese history and culture buff, this is your proverbial candy store. Start your adventure at Izumo Taisha, one of Japan's oldest and most sacred Shinto shrines. It's home to stories and legends that have been passed on for thousands of years, and they say the shrine was built by Amaterasu herself, the Shinto god who created the world. Every October, the Shinto gods across Japan gather here to determine the fate of humanity for the coming year, and perhaps hit a couple of sake shots or three. Move on to the Izumo Cultural Heritage Museum to learn about the history and architecture of the Izumo Taisha in temperature-controlled comfort and enjoy the Japanese style garden outside when you’re done. If you think little Buddhist statues with caps and bibs are the cutest things ever, the Tachikue Gorge Natural Park has got you covered with 1,500 of them. We recommend ending your day on a high – 43.65 meters to be precise – at Hinomisaki Lighthouse for a breathtaking view of the sun setting on the Japan sea. Cuisine-wise, be sure to try out the local specialty, fresh Izumo soba served warigo style – three round lacquered boxes of soba stacked on top of each another.

Sights in Izumo

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Gakuenji Temple

Gakuenji Temple, built in 594, is a quiet temple surrounded by lush forests. Covered by trees, the temple is swathed in a mysterious shade even in the daytime.

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Izumo-Taisha Grand Shrine

Izumo Grand Shrine is one of the most important shrines of the Shinto religion. Some say that this shrine was built in the 600s, and nowadays, the Izumo Grand S

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Shimane Museum of Ancient Izumo

Izumo has many spots deeply related to Japanese mythology, and this museum displays objects related to the history and culture of the Izumo Grand Shrine. Visito

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Kyu-Taisha Station

Kyu-Taisha Station is the former station of the city, which now displays the "D51" steam locomotive.

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Inasanohama Beach

Located about 10 minutes east of the Izumo Grand Shrine is Inasanohama, a beach said to welcome all the deities on their way to Grand Shrine. To this day, the

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Hinomisaki Jinja Shrine

The shrine, built about 380 years ago, is composed of the upper shrine "Kami no Miya" and the lower shrine "Hishizumi no Miya".

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Hinomisaki Lighthouse

Built in 1903, this lighthouse is the tallest in Japan, measuring in at 43.65 meters and is listed as one of the top 100 most beautiful lighthouses in the world

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This island is the natural habitat of black-tailed gulls and landing there is allowed only once a year by a priest.

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This traditional noodle house specializes in soba (buckwheat) noodles that are famous in Izumo City. The menu has photos to help you order individual dishes or

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Izumo Zenzaimochi

This traditional shop sells a wide selection of sweets from Edo-period Japan. The name zenzaimochi means a 'sweet where the spirit dwells', which originated fro

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Awazu Inari Shrine

Known as a popular picture spot among locals and visitors, this shrine features 20 torii (shrine gates). The railway runs through the middle of these gates, and

Sight in Shimane

Tanakaya Soba

This shop specializes in Izumo soba, a popular dish among both locals and visitors. Tanakaya serves Izumo soba which is noodles made from fresh buckwheat flour,