Monday, December 03, 2012

Tokyo Travel: Meijijingu Shrine

When we were in Tokyo in October, we visited one of their biggest shrine. It's big because it's surrounded by a huge and densely-forested park. There are many walking paths in the park, so I believe many people jog and stroll there everyday.

It was our last day in Tokyo, and we wanted to have a leisurely day as we were lugging our luggage everywhere we went. I am so glad we decided to visit the shrine, because we chanced upon a really traditional Japanese wedding march when we arrived. More on that later. :)

Lots of pretty sights in the park, and it's really therapeutic to have a stroll through the greeneries in such cool weather.

The shrine stood in the middle of the park, looking very solemn and peaceful.

And this was the wedding procession we saw. It is such a big contrast to the traditional Chinese weddings we are used to. The whole shrine was dead silent as they marched from one end of the shrine to the other. Everyone was very serious-looking, even the groom and the bride. They marched really slowly and the family members and friends followed behind. It was a very huge culture surprise for us, having witnessed such a solemn wedding for the first time.  There were many people watching, just like us, and everyone was busy taking photographs of them. Yet, the whole place remained dead silent.

We were impacted by what we saw - What an experience! They are so different from us Chinese, who would bang on our cymbals and gongs just to make the whole atmosphere loud and vibrant!

As we checked out the shrine, we found it to be really huge, spacious and very solemn as well. It was a quiet place for people to pray at and to write down their prayers and wishes on wooden plaques we saw at many other shrines as well.

I feel that a visit to the Meijijingu Shrine is a must when you are in Tokyo - It is symbolic of the Japanese's devotion and faith.

A light-hearted moment came when we saw this super kawaii girl in a red kimono! She was there with her mum (also dressed in pretty kimono) to attend the very solemn wedding. Perhaps, once the procession is over, the rest of the wedding is joyous and rowdy as well?? I sure hope so. Weddings are supposed to be happy!

Saw these on our way out of the park. There is just something so traditional and characteristic about wine baskets in Japan.

We left the park with a big wide smile on our faces. Hubby and I both agreed that the wedding was the most significant event we witnessed on our Tokyo trip. So glad we made it right before we made our way to the airport. Memorable indeed. :)

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