Tokyo Days 23 - Kawagoe (Part 2)

Moving in seemingly reverse order, my third destination on my list was Kitain Shrine. Normally the first destination for most visitors due to its close proximity to the JR Kawagoe Station, I opted to visit it later. That decision paid of handsomely as many of the visitors who arrived earlier in the day had moved on to the Merchant Street. This meant a relatively empty shrine where I would be able to take pictures to my heart's content without any distractions.

Before the main entrance of the shrine are several monuments erected to mark historical figures and visits.

While certainly large, the shrine's main gate was fairly sparse without much ornamentation.

Even the main shrine itself was fairly simple, a far cry from the impressive shrine we are used to seeing in Tokyo's city center.

Do not forget to wash your hands before making a prayer.

What it lacks in grandiosity, it makes up for in space without many sub-shrines and structures located within the grounds of the shrine.

This particularly large stone garden lead to a historical structure, an entry fee was required though.

This large closed circuit television camera would give you an idea of how historically important the site is.

I am not too sure what these periphery structures are but, they look considerably newer than the main shrine.

Explore the outer edges of the temple and you will stumble upon ruins of the old shrine.

While they are in pretty good shape, it does not appear that much restorative work have gone into them.

The earlier crowd had dissipated making it a good time for me to say a prayer. I did not take any picture up close of the main shrine because it is often frown upon even if there are no signs specifically prohibiting it.

Another one of the periphery structures that somehow start to resemble watch towers. This particular one had a phoenix motif one one end and a dragon one on the other.
I forgot to take a close-up shot of the phoenix but, here is the dragon.

Located even further from the main shrine is another small shrine surrounded by a graveyard. I wish I could understand the history better because this looked like a really interesting shrine.

Not too far from said shrine is the side entrance of Kitain Shrine. There were very few visitors coming to and fro here and I felt this was the nicer entrance especially with lovely flowers growing surrounding it.

Before I left Kitain, I stumbled upon a first generation Subaru Impreza WRX. I do not often share car shots but, this clean example in white was really eye catching. The upgraded brakes on all four corners also hinted at the driver's predisposition too!

Not long after, I hoped on the loop bus to move towards my fourth and final destination of the day.

Honmaru Goten, the last remaining bit of an old Japanese castle.

Of all the locations I visited, this had to be the most underwhelming of them all.

There was not much that could be seen from the outside and to go in, you would have to pay an entrance fee. Within it are several historical exhibits which I was not much to interested in.

A map detailing the layout in the olden days.

The structure itself reflected true old-Japanese architecture but, it somehow just felt rather boring.

Right across the street from Honamru Goten was the City Art Museum. Closing at 5 p.m., I did not have much time to visit said museum.

That was fine because after a whole day of traveling and sightseeing, I was pretty worn out myself. There was still the one hour train ride back that I had to consider. Satisfied with what I had seen for the day, I packed up, feel asleep on the bus trip back and then took the train all the way home just in time for some remaining daylight. Overall, Kawagoe is indeed an interesting destination to visit. I would say the smells of the Merchant Street and Penny Candy Alley alone are worth the visit. With that, I will end on this note. Once again, thank you so much for reading and have yourself a wonderful day ahead!


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