Japan Kyoto Downtown

Nishiki Tenmangu Shrine

A shrine established in 1003, honoring a Heian scholar and deity of learning.

Photo of Nishiki Tenmangu Shrine, Japan (A199/Japan/Kyoto/Nishiki Shinto Temple/People by dany13)

Nishiki Tenmangu Shrine, dedicated to Sugawara no Michizane, a revered scholar and deity of learning, was established in 1003. This Shinto shrine, located in the Nakagyo Ward of Kyoto, provides a quiet space among the city’s activity, featuring gardens, an iconic torii gate, and a significant history.

About Nishiki Tenmangu Shrine

Close to the lively Nishiki Market, Nishiki Tenmangu Shrine is a place where visitors can enjoy traditional Japanese architecture and gardens. Enshrining Tenjin, the deified Sugawara no Michizane from the Heian period (794-1185), the shrine originally stood on Michizane’s father’s property and has been associated with academic and business success.

The shrine’s history mirrors Japan’s dynamic past. In 1299, Zenkō-ji temple merged with Kanki-ji temple, making Tenmangu its protective shrine. After suffering damage during the Onin War (1467-1477), the temple and shrine were moved, but in 1587, Toyotomi Hideyoshi’s city planning relocated Nishiki Tenmangu to its present location on the east end of Nishikikoji Street.

The Meiji era (1868-1912) saw Nishiki Tenmangu separating from its Buddhist ties to become an independent Shinto shrine. A 1889 fire led to the 1890 reconstruction of the current shrine buildings. A part of the 1935 torii gate amusingly integrates with nearby buildings due to a planning oversight.

At Nishiki Tenmangu, visitors can discover the “karakuri mikuji,” a mechanical fortune-teller with a lion dance, and fortunes in English or for children. The shrine also hosts auxiliary deities, including Minamoto no Ietaka and Ukanomitama-no-kami.

The “Nishiki no Mizu” spring is a local highlight for its reputed benefits. For the spiritually inclined, the shrine is part of the “Sugawara no Michizane Twenty-Five Sanctuaries Pilgrimage” and the “Twenty-Five Shrines of Rakuou Tenmangu Pilgrimage.”

Surrounding the shrine, various shops offer traditional goods. Nishiki Tenmangu also celebrates festivals like Setsubun in February and Tenjin in July, which showcase Kyoto’s cultural heritage.

Getting There the easiest way to reach Nishiki Tenmangu Shrine

HK 86

Hankyu Kyoto-kawaramachi
 Hankyu Kyoto Main Line + 1 more

 about 5 minute walk (400m)
KH 39

 Keihan Main Line

 5-10 minute walk (700m)

Around Nishiki Tenmangu Shrine

Nishiki Tenmangu Shrine

Shinto Shrine in Kyoto

open 8am - 8pm
closed Irregularly


錦天満宮, 京都

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Updated 13 Mar 2024 • Report an error

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