Kuramae

 

Kuramae Station is located in the Kuramae and Kotobuki neighborhoods of Taito Ward of Tokyo and is served by the Toei Asakusa and Oedo Subway Lines. Kuramae Station has two platforms on the Asakusa Line with the two tracks between them one for passengers going to Nihombashi and Nishi-Magome Stations, and the other for those bound for Oshiage Station. The platform serving Oedo Line is an island platform with one track serving passengers bound for Iidabashi and Tochomae Stations, and the other for those going to Ryogoku and Daimon Stations.

 

 

Kuramae , which means "front of the warehouses", is basically a wholesalers' town with many bulk shops, most of which deal in toys, games, fireworks and carp streamers. During the Edo period, Kuramae had stables for warriors' horses, besides warehouses for rice that was harvested on the Shogun's farms. Kuramae was also home to the original sumo stadium before it was shifted to Ryogoku in 1985. Today the Kuramae Water Treatment Center stands at the site. The area also has several small shrines and temples, the most important being Torigoe-jinja.

 

Torigoe-jinja

 

Torigoe-jinja is one of the oldest shrines of Tokyo dating back to 651. The shrine was originally built on a small island in shallow sea, but later in 1620, the shoguns filled the land and it became part of Edo. Torigoe-jinja is mainly known for its festival that attracts tens of thousands of visitors every year. Celebrated at the beginning of June each year, Yomatsuri Festival is famous for its sengan-mikoshi , or portable shrine. This 4 ton shrine (which is the heaviest in Tokyo) is carried by over two hundred men in a procession around the town. Dancers and children carrying flags head the procession. Other people surround and follow the shrine carrying paper lanterns. Still others gather and line the streets to experience the mystical atmosphere.

 

Torigoe-jinja is located 5 minutes from Kuramae Station.

 

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