Kamiiso no Torii in Oarai, Japan

Originally founded circa 856, Ōarai-Isosaki Shrine is dedicated to the deity Ōnamuchi-no-mikoto, one of the central figures in Japanese mythology, who is said to have once landed on a rock off the coast of Ōarai. Later, the rock was topped with a torii gate, marking the holy ground.

As the coast faces the Pacific Ocean, the torii is constantly beaten by crashing waves and greeted by the sunrise every morning, creating an incredibly photogenic scene during the golden hour. Naturally, the shrine gets quite busy on New Year’s Day, with people flocking from all across Japan to see the hatsuhinode, or the first sunlight of the year, on this magical coast.

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