Located on the mountain of Inari-san in Fushimi-ku Kyoto, Fushimi Inari-taisha is known as the headquarters of all the Inari shrines nationwide, said to total 40,000. In ancient times, it was linked with the Hata family, who are said to have brought the technique of silk production to Japan from the Korean peninsula. Inari was originally a god of rice and agriculture, but over time gradually evolved to become revered as the god of industry as well, which probably played a large part in the spread of this popular cult all over the country. Japan is called the land of eight million gods, but in this pantheistic proliferation Inari is one of the most famous. One thing not to miss at Fushimi Inari Taisha is the famous thousand torii gates. A torii is the gateway to a sacred ground, and all these gates have been presented as offerings to the shrine by fervent believers over the ages. As you pass through the endless tunnels of vermilion torii on the way uphill to the main shrine, the light of the sun, the red gates and the marvelous gradations of the surrounding verdure create an experience that you will never forget.