It’s a cute little kitty shrine! The origin stories involve both a deity couple and a story about a poor woman who, after giving up her cat, made cat dolls to become rich.
There’s lots of cat statues and even some real cats lying around if you’re lucky!
It can be a little difficult to find, I almost missed it, but google maps has the location right.
If you are planning to go to Asakusa to see the famous Sensoji and Kaminarimon, this small but charming shrine is only a short walk away and well worth swinging by if you have the time.
Considered the "origin" of the maneki neko (lucky waving cat), this shrine has maneki neko on signs around the shrine, on the ema prayer boards, inside the shrine, and all over the items in their shop as well.
We visited this shrine after visiting Gotokuji. It is much smaller in size, but filled with really cute cat figurines. Unfortunately, we visited after the office had closed, so we only managed to see the grounds. Plus point was that there was no crowd at all, which helped alot with photo taking. It’s around a 15mins walk from Asakusa Station, and you will need Google Maps for directions.
I caught the train to Asakusa and it was only a short walk. The walk itself was nice and peaceful and I enjoyed the break from the usual Tokyo crowds. Only a few other visitors when I visited, so I could take photos without bothering anyone. It is a small shrine. There is also a shop there that sells a great variety of cat related items - prices were quite reasonable
Shrine full of cats!
You can pray there for love. Today the place was filled with a steady stream of young women who diligently wrote on ema tablets, bought fortunes, omamori, and hoped that their prayers for that special one would be answered.
The line to get a goshuin (red shrine stamp) was ridiculously long.
This shrine is adorable. Only a kilometer (just over a half mile) from Senso-ji temple, this temple is a stark contrast to the tour bus crowds of Senso-ji. Twin Maneki nekos are honored at imado shrine and cats adorn pots, omamori and almost everything else here. A white cat roams the grounds and seemed to guide our way there. My son purchased a go-shuin cho (book for temple/shrine stamps) depicting the twin maneki nekos. The stamp also has the twin cats and is a favorite. We purchased several omamori for gifts that were appreciated by all. The shrine is quaint, cute and kitchy. The staff was freindly and welcoming. Although not a must see, if you want to get away from the crowds and adore cats, it is certainly worth the short excursion.
I visited 2 cat shrines while in Tokyo.
This one is about a 15min walk from the Senso-ji Temple or train statio. Walk along the river with a good view of the Tokyo Skytree in the distance.
Must-visit for cat lovers. Small gift shop with souvenirs was nice as well.
If you are a cat lover, you need to stop by, it is a short walk from Asakusa Temple. For a beautiful view, walk by the river and enjoy the City view. The shrine is small but quiet.
Today I felt like avoiding the crowds and check out a few shrines/temples within walking distance from the hotel. I saw a few pics of Maneki Neko, Lucky Cat and thought it was for luck with fortune. Sure I could use some luck.
Imado Shrine is 10 min walk from Asakusa Station and Sosenji Temple. From the station take the scenic route through Sumida park along the waterfront. Nice views of Skytree. The shrine is small compared to others but does catch your eye. You'll notice all the Maneki Neko all over the place. They are in sets of two. Pictures, statues, sculptures, vases decorated everywhere. Took a few pics and some souvenirs.
I told my co-worker/translator about my weekend visiting random shrines. I mention Imado shrine and she giggles and tells me single women go there to find love and romance. No romance hunting for me. Just checking out cool stuff around and being a tourist.
located in asakusa, walking down sumida river shore, dedicated to a holy imado cat, cat souvenirs and symbols are everywhere. shrine for the couples to pray for good luck or single ones to find love.