The Taikodani Inari Shrine (太皷谷稲荷神社, Taikodani Inari Jinja) is one of the five greatest Inari Shrines in Japan. It was built in the mid 18th century, northeast of Tsuwano Castle, with the intention of protecting the castle against evil spirits (northeast was considered to be the most inauspicious direction). Today, people visit the shrine to pray for good harvest, prosperity and good fortune.
The entrance to the Taikodani Inari Shrine is a short walk from the southern tip of Tsuwano's old town. A dense number of vermillion torii gates are erected over a long series of stairs leading uphill to the shrine. A 15 minute climb through this characteristic tunnel of torii gates leads to the main shrine grounds, where the beautiful main hall and former main hall stand. Large sacred straw ropes hang across the front of the halls, which are a feature observed also at other shrines in Shimane Prefecture.
It takes about 15-20 minutes to walk from Tsuwano Station to the bottom of the stairway leading up to the shrine. From there, a 15 minute climb takes you to the main shrine grounds.