Miyamasumitake Shrine is a treasure in the Shibuya jungle

Miyamasumitake shrine street entrance
You could walk right past the entrance and not notice it.

I’ve always liked Tokyo’s hidden treasures.  You can walk along a street of modern buildings, and between them will be an old temple or shrine.  It can be surprising when it happens, but it’s not unusual.  One such example is in Shibuya.

That one is called Miyamasumitake Shrine.  It is not far from the station.   Walk up nearby Miyamasuzaka (“Miyamasu Hill”), and you’ll find it.

small Shibuya shinto shrine
Miyamasumitake Shrine.

It is pretty easy to miss, though. The entrance is squeezed between big buildings. If you don’t look around while walking, you could miss it entirely. You could keep going up the hill and pass it by entirely. Many people do that.

I used to teach in Shibuya. When I talked about this Miyamasumitake Shrine to my students, some had no idea it existed. And that was even with my school only a couple of minutes walk away.

urban shrine
There is nothing but concrete around the shrine.
guardian fox deity statue

But, if you find your way to it and make your way up a long and reasonably steep set of stairs, you’ll be at the entrance. There isn’t much to see, as the surrounding area is showing its age. Luckily, some areas of Miyamasuzaka are undergoing redevelopment.

Miyamasumitake shrine
Miyamasumitake shrine torii gate

The shrine is well-kept but tiny. It has a rock garden, so be careful to stick to the path! What I love about it is looking up and seeing the surrounding buildings dwarf it on three sides. If you turn around, you’ll see Shibuya Hikarie soaring into the sky.

buildings suround Miyamasumitake shrine

It’s nice to know that these small, beautiful shrines still exist in Japan. They contrast the old and the new. It’s a small shrine against the large urban buildings. They are oases of secluded tranquility in the busy city.

Where is Miyamasumitake Shrine?

It’s about a five-minute walk from Shibuya Station. Click here to see it on Google Maps.

For more shrine articles, look at:

Miyamasumitake shrine entrance long staircase

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