Kumano Hayatama Taisha
The Kumano Hayatama Taisha, also referred to as ‘Shingu’ is one of the Kumano Grand Shrines. Located on the coast in Shingu City, the shrine is nearby the mouth of the Kumano River from which water flows into the ocean from the sacred Kii Mountains.
The shrine is known for its ‘Nagi-no-ki’, an ancient conifer also considered sacred. Nature worship plays a fundamental role in Shintoism, underpinning the ancient belief system in which devotion of natural features including certain trees, stones, waterfalls, rivers and mountains long pre-dates the tradition of constructing shrines; something adopted following the introduction of Buddhism to Japan.
As one of the three shrines making-up the ‘Kumano Sanzan’, many visitors will want to visit this shrine along with Kumano Hongu Taisha and Kumano Nachi Taisha – the three most important destinations along the Kumano Kodo trail.