Kirishima Azalea at Nagaoka Tenmangu Shrine
Nagaokakyo (長岡京) city, a former capital of Japan before Kyoto, is renowned for its histrical importance. Nagaoka Tenmangu (長岡天満宮) shrine is one of them.
The deity of the shrine is Sir Sugawara Michizane (菅原道真) who was delegated to Dazaifu (大宰府) in Kyushu (九州), and the shrine was built at the place where Michizane stopped by on his way to Dazaifu, loathing his reluctant parting from Kyoto. Later Michizane died a tragic death in Dazaifu, and became a god of learning and examinations. This way his soul is still living in many Japanese people’s hearts.
In this season, Kirishima Azalea (霧島つつじ) are blooming in their prime at the shrine. Surrounding the Hachijoga ike (八条ヶ池) pond, azalea are blooming in flaming scarlet. Some of them are more than 100 years old. I enjyoed the breathtaking scernery.
Kyoto Expert certification 1st Grade
20 mins on foot from Nagaokakyo station, JR line
10 mins. on foot from Nagaoka Tenjin station, Hankyu line