Tokyo Express (4 of 5): Reverent Spaces

Tokyo is dotted with hundreds of temples and shrines. In many cases, these small islands of reverent reflection are some of the most beautiful spaces in the city. The following photos show only a tiny sampling of the many places of worship which can be found everywhere from major city-center parks to hidden back alleys.

A massive Torii marks the entrance to Meiji Jingu.

5-Shot HDR @ 24mm, 1/250, ISO 800
5-Shot HDR @ 24mm, 1/250, ISO 800

An orderly row of wooden ladles await visitors at a ritual hand washing basin near the entrance to Meiji Shrine.

19mm @1/20, f/2.8, ISO 800
19mm @1/20, f/2.8, ISO 800

Wooden tablets that people purchase and write prayer requests on hang in front of Meiji shrine.

105mm @1/160, f/2.8, ISO 800
105mm @1/160, f/2.8, ISO 800

Sake barrels wrapped in decorative covers made of straw line the pathway to Meiji Jingu in Yoyogi Park.

70mm @1/250, f/2.8, ISO 1000
70mm @1/250, f/2.8, ISO 1000

A crowded path through the vendor-laden streets of Nakamise-Dōri leads to one of Asakusa’s most revered temples, Sensō-ji.

200mm @1/250, f/2.8, ISO 100
200mm @1/250, f/2.8, ISO 100

Throngs of visitors pass beneath Hozomon Gate into the inner sanctum of Asakusa, Sensō-ji Temple.

85mm @1/1600, f/2, ISO 100
85mm @1/1600, f/2, ISO 100

Devoted Buddhists ward off evil spirits by wafting incense smoke over themselves at an alter in Sensō-ji.

14mm @1/160, f/5, ISO 100
14mm @1/160, f/5, ISO 100

Pilgrims cast coins into a large coffer before offering up prayers at Sensō-ji Temple.

24mm @1/160, f/3.2, ISO 100
24mm @1/160, f/3.2, ISO 100

Stone lanterns decorate the courtyard outside Tōshō-gū shrine in the center of Ueno Park.

105mm @1/250, f/5, ISO 100
105mm @1/250, f/5, ISO 100

A five-story pagoda serves as the main hall for Tōeizan Kan’ei-ji Endon-in Buddhist temple in Ueno Park.

105mm @1/250, f/9, ISO 100
105mm @1/250, f/9, ISO 100

Colorfully decorated tablets carry the prayers of pilgrims at Ueno Toshogu Shrine.

105mm @1/250, f/3.2, ISO 100
105mm @1/250, f/3.2, ISO 100

Check out these and more high-resolution shots from Tokyo in my set on Flickr.

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