Miho Shrine – 美保神社

The primary feature of Mihonoseki Harbour is the magnificent Miho Shrine. The sacred torii gate stands close to the old port as if inviting the fishing boats to enter. This very old shrine is dedicated to Ebisu, the god of fishermen and business prosperity; and Mihotsuhime, the goddess of abundant harvest. The shrine’s architecture is notable for its two main halls (honden). Most shrines only have one honden.

Mihonoseki’s history is closely tied to Ebisu, who is said to enjoy fishing on the shores of the peninsula. Miho Shrine is the head shrine to approximately 3000 others throughout Japan dedicated to Ebisu. Ebisu is another name for Kotoshironushi, a son of Ôkuninushi, the deity of matchmaking (En-musubi) who is enshrined on the opposite end of the Shimane Peninsula at Izumo Taisha Grand Shrine, one of the largest and most important shrines in Japan.