Kunozan Toshogu shrine [久能山東照宮]
Romon gate of Kunozan Toshogu
Main shrine of Kunozan Toshogu
Kunozan Toshogu is a Shinto shrine located about 7 km east of JR Shizuoka station.
All "o"s and last "u" in the words are pronounced long, so it is read as "Kunôzan Tôshôgû".
It is near the peak of Mount Kuno (久能山, Kunôzan, 216 m).
It is only 0.7 km from the coast facing Suruga Bay.
In 1568, Kuno Castle was built in this place by Takeda Shingen (1521-1573).
He was a strong warlord, and had invaded this area from the north (current Yamanashi Prefecture).
But Takeda family was overthrown, then Tokugawa Ieyasu (1543-1616) occupied this area in 1582.
After Ieyasu founded Edo Government in current Tokyo in 1603, he came back to Sunpu Castle near current Shizuoka station to retire in 1607.
He thought that Kuno Castle was very important.
Therefore, after he died in 1616, he was buried in this place.
The following year, Tokugawa Hidetada who was one of Ieyasu's sons and the 2nd Shogun after Ieyasu, started to build this shrine after scrapping Kuno Castle.
This shrine was completed within 1617.
Side of main shrine
Carving on the main shrine
The body of Ieyasu was moved to the shrine in Nikko at the 1st anniversary of his death.
At that time, Ieyasu was enshrined as a god in the shrine.
The Emperor gave the name "Tosho-Daigongen" to the god of Ieyasu.
So the shrine in Kunozan named Tôshôgû.
In 1634, Tokugawa Iemitsu, the 3rd Shogun, expanded the shrine in Nikko, and it also named Tôshôgû.
Since that, the shrine in Shizuoka has been called "Kunozan Toshogu" and the shrine in Nikko has been called "Nikko Toshogu".
The gorgeous buildings in this shrine are all original, and most of them are designated as a national treasure and nationally important cultural properties.
Tomb of Ieyasu Tokugawa
Scenery from Kunozan
To visit this shrine, there are two routes.
The traditional route is on the southern slope of the mountain.
You must go up the 1,159 steps.
Another route is from Nihondaira hill located about 1 km north of Mount Kuno and a ropeway leads close to the main shrine.
How to get here
By route bus for Kunozan-shita, about 34 minutes from Shizuoka station.
It is operated about every 2 hours.
Or, from Nihondaira, about 5 minites by Nihondaira Ropeway.
It is operated every 10 to 15 minutes.
To Nihondaira, by route bus , about 45 minutes from Shizuoka station.
It is operated about every 1 to 1.5 hours.