A political conflict saw Heian period statesman Sugawara no Michizane demoted to a menial position on the island of Kyushu, where he died in 903. When earthquakes and storms ravaged Kyoto shortly after his passing, locals feared that Sugawara was exacting revenge on the city. Their solution was to build Shinto shrine Kitano Tenmangu and deify the vengeful spirit. The grounds were decorated with Sugawara’s favourite plum trees, about 2,000 of which blossom each February. To celebrate the occasion, a festival with local maiko and geiko has been held here on 25 February since 1109. The rest of the year it’s a peaceful and photogenic shrine, with a more restrained colour scheme than most of its Shinto brethren.
|Venue name:||Kitano Tenmangu|
|Opening hours:||Apr-Sep 5am-6pm, Oct-Mar 5.30am-5.30pm|
|Transport:||Kitanohakubaicho Station (Keifuku Dentetsu-Kitano line)|