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Shimogamo Shrine

This shrine was dedicated to spirits in the 6th century. Now, it survives as the oldest of its kind in Kyoto, pre-dating the city itself.

This site is one of the two oldest shrines in the city of Kyoto. It is part of the Kamo Shrines, which are considered extremely significant as they pre-date the city itself. Even the site’s surviving trees date back to the 15th century. It is listed as one of the 17 Historic Monuments of Ancient Kyoto.

Visit the traditional main halls with their sloping roofs. They are dedicated to deities. Wander the large grounds to see the seemingly countless shrines on the site. Find the Mitarashi Shrine and its large pond where autumnal purification ceremonies take place. Head to the red palace, which is surrounded by clay that may have been used for ceramics many years ago.

Marvel at the 600-year-old trees of the Tadasu no Mori forest surrounding the shrine’s complex. Walk across the Taikobashi Bridge to enjoy the greenery of the surrounding trees. The forest is on a river delta, encouraging the lush, green landscape. Visit the shrine in spring to make the most of the cherry blossom trees. Take photos of the most famous tree, which stands in front of the forest’s vermillion gate. The woods cover an area of 30 acres (12 hectares).

The site’s name means “Lower Kamo Shrine,” which stresses its important link with the Kamigamo Shrine. Of the two, Shimogamo is believed to be the oldest, possibly dating back to the 6th century. It is dedicated to deities and spirits. During Kyoto’s reign as Japan’s capital, the imperial family designated it as a site of protection and prosperity.

The shrine sits in the north of Kyoto, between the Takano and Kamo rivers. Demachi-Yanagi Station is 0.7 miles (1.1 km) away on foot. It is on the Keihan Line of the city’s subway. Buses run regularly to Shimogamojinja-mae bus stop, right by the shrine.


Guide to Exploring around Shimogamo Shrine


Map

Best Lodging Options Near Shimogamo Shrine

See all 2,547 properties near Shimogamo Shrine
Yadoya Kyoto-Shimogamo CA $440
Yadoya Kyoto-Shimogamo

Yadoya Kyoto-Shimogamo

     
    3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

    Situated in Kyoto, this holiday home is within 1 mi (2 km) of Shimogamo Shrine and Kyoto Institute of Technology. Kyoto University and Kyoto Imperial Palace are also within 2 miles (3 km). Kitaoji Station is 14 minutes by foot and Kuramaguchi Station is 15 minutes.

    Hidden Inn Shimogamo
    Hidden Inn Shimogamo

    Hidden Inn Shimogamo

       
      3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Situated in Kyoto, this holiday home is within 1 mi (2 km) of Shimogamo Shrine and Kyoto University. Kyoto Imperial Palace and Heian Shrine are also within 2 miles (3 km). Kyoto Mototanaka Station is 5 minutes by foot and Kyoto Demachiyanagi Station is 9 minutes.

      Family Friendly Boutique Townhouse In Quiet Area With Bikes
      Family Friendly Boutique Townhouse In Quiet Area With Bikes

      Family Friendly Boutique Townhouse In Quiet Area With Bikes

      82-6 Tanaka Minaminishiuracho Sakyo-ku,, Kyoto, Kyoto (prefecture)
         
        0.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Situated in Kyoto, this holiday home is within 1 mi (2 km) of Shimogamo Shrine and Kyoto University. Kyoto Imperial Palace and Heian Shrine are also within 2 miles (3 km). Kyoto Mototanaka Station is 5 minutes by foot and Kyoto Demachiyanagi Station is 9 minutes.

        Guest House Motana
        Guest House Motana

        Guest House Motana

           
          3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          Situated in Kyoto, this holiday home is within 1 mi (2 km) of Shimogamo Shrine and Kyoto University. Kyoto Imperial Palace and Heian Shrine are also within 2 miles (3 km). Kyoto Mototanaka Station is only a 4-minute walk and Kyoto Chayama Station is 8 minutes.

          Kyoto Guest House Kohinobori - Adult Only Hostel
          Kyoto Guest House Kohinobori - Adult Only Hostel

          Kyoto Guest House Kohinobori - Adult Only Hostel

             
            1.0 out of 5.0 Stars

            Situated in the historical district, this hostel is within 1 mile (2 km) of Shimogamo Shrine, Kyoto University and Kyoto Imperial Palace. Heian Shrine and Doshisha University are also within 2 miles (3 km). Kyoto Demachiyanagi Station is only a 2-minute walk and Kyoto Mototanaka Station is 14 minutes.

            Hotel Riverte Kyoto Kamogawa CA $402
            Hotel Riverte Kyoto Kamogawa

            Hotel Riverte Kyoto Kamogawa

            202 Seiryucho, Kamigyo, Kyoto, Kyoto
               
              2.5 out of 5.0 Stars

              Situated in the historical district, this hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Shimogamo Shrine and Kyoto Imperial Palace. Heian Shrine and Gion Corner are also within 3 mi (5 km). Kyoto Demachiyanagi Station is only a 5-minute walk and Imadegawa Station is 15 minutes.

              Kyoto Brighton Hotel CA $163
              Kyoto Brighton Hotel

              Kyoto Brighton Hotel

                 
                4.5 out of 5.0 Stars

                Located in Central Kyoto, this luxury hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Kyoto Imperial Palace and Doshisha University. Nijō Castle and Kyoto University are also within 1 mile (2 km). Imadegawa Station is 11 minutes by foot and Marutamachi Station is 13 minutes.

                Karan Hoshi
                Karan Hoshi

                Karan Hoshi

                   
                  3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Situated in Kyoto, this holiday home is within 1 mi (2 km) of Shimogamo Shrine, Kyoto University, and Doshisha University. Kyoto Imperial Palace and Heian Shrine are also within 2 miles (3 km). Kyoto Demachiyanagi Station is 6 minutes by foot and Kyoto Mototanaka Station is 7 minutes.