Tomioka Hachiman Shrine – the Birthplace of Sumo
Tomioka Hachimangu Shrine is famous for its festival, its golden portable shrines and as the birthplace of sumo wrestling. A lesser known but excellent spot to check out.
Tomioka Hachiman Shrine is the largest Hachiman (God of warriors and divine protector of Japan) shrine in Tokyo, famous for its annual summer festival, The Great Festival of Edo, its golden Mikoshi (portable shrine) and as the birthplace of professional sumo wrestling.
From the entrance gate, you’ll see a display hall to your left. Inside, find two golden portable shrines or Mikoshi, each weighing four tons, valued at one billion yen each and encrusted with diamonds, rubies and sapphires. They are the largest Mikoshi in the Kanto region and the pride of the shrine, displayed for all to see at the summer festivals.
The First Sumo tournament
In 1684, Tomioka Hachiman Shrine held the first sumo tournament in Japan with official permission from the ruling Tokugawa shogunate and has continued to be heavily associated with the sport ever since. It is still the shrine at which tournament champions come to pray, each having their names carved into the Yokozuna Stone – a large stone monument honoring titans of the sport.
Tomioka Hachiman Festival
Once every three years, the golden Mikoshi is carried down adjacent Etai Dori for the Hachiman Matsuri (festival), one of Tokyo’s Big Three Festivals. Affectionately called the Mizukake Matsuri (Water Pouring Festival) it attracts over half a million spectators. As the procession proceeds, spectators throw water on the shrine carriers, turning the ceremony into something resembling a water fight. As with all big festivals, the streets are lined with food stalls selling traditional foods and sweets.
Adress: 1-1-20-3 Tomioka, Kōtō-ku, Tokyo
Telephone: +81 03-3642-1315
How to access to Tomioka Hachiman Shrine ?
By train: 10 minutes walk from Tokyo Station or Nihonbashi or an 8-minute walk from Monzennaka-Cho Station
Duration Of Visit
45 minutes- 1 hour
Period Of Visit