Kashima Jingu Grand Shrine (Kashima City)
Kashima Jingu Grand Shrine is said to have been established in 660BCE and is the oldest and largest Shinto Shrine in the Kanto region. The shrine is dedicated to Takemikazuchi-no-mikoto, the Shinto god of martial arts.
The shrine is set in spacious park-like grounds. After seeing the shrine, make sure to stop off at the deer enclosure and visit the crystal blue Mitarashi Pond. Stalls selling traditional Japanese snacks like dango dumplings and salt-baked sweetfish are also available at busy times of year.
More than 80 annual events and festivals are held at the shrine, including the Ofune Matsuri or ‘Ship Festival’, which takes place just once every 12 years and attracts visitors from across Japan and overseas.