Before you keep reading please know that in this post there are pictures of male genitalia. Not real of course cause this isn’t that type of blog but there are images you may not like. You have been warned.
When I was in Narita I took a tour with Katsumi from Narita Rainbow Tours (which I HIGHLY recommend) and one of our stops was a fertility shrine. You would never know it was there from the street because there is a parking lot and then a couple sets of steep stairs you have to climb in order to get to it.
Below is the staircase you see from the parking lot.
below is the view from the top of the first staircase.
After you climb the first staircase you have a second one ahead of you.
After your climb you get to the landing where you are about to see some things you may not have seen before.
That’s my tour guide Katsumi below showing us, in his words, “The biggest penis in Japan.” I said to him, “Haha…it’s BLACK!” Oh my goodness we laughed at that one.
Why all the penes? This is a fertility shrine. When people want to get pregnant or have a hard time getting pregnant they come to this shrine. Once at the shrine they buy a carved wooden penis and write their name(s) and wishes on it.
AI don’t know about you but this is my first time seeing a shrine filled with wood carved genitalia. However, it wasn’t dirty or creepy, it was a unique look into another culture and the beliefs that some have. When you travel you get the chance to open your mind to other cultures in ways you may not have ever imagined. Go with it, don’t fight it. You don’t have to change your beliefs or accept the things you see but you can be respectful and learn something.
Have you ever seen anything while traveling that took you completely by surprise?