Kashiwaba Oakleaf Hydrangea at Sashiogi Shrine Saitama City

You hear so much about “ajisai dera” (hydrangea temples) at this time of year in Japan. But what about hydrangea shrines? Hundreds of shrines throughout Saitama have some hydrangea on their grounds, but for some reason its all about the hydrangea temples! Well there is an actual reason – hydrangea’s long and intricate connection with Buddhism, but that’s beside the point! In Tokyo of course Hakusan Shrine is famous for its hydrangea, but Saitama?

Hydrangea Sashiogi Hikawa Shrine

There are a few, but they just don’t have the exposure of neighboring Tokyo’s hydrangea spots. There is one place in particular in Saitama that always comes to mind when I think of hydrangea and shrines. A quaint neighborhood shrine that is neither big nor prominent, but they have a beautiful garden boasting dozens of hydrangea. It is well known among Saitama-jin, but I am not sure it is that well known outside the prefecture borders…

Hydrangea Shrine in Saitama City

The hydrangea shrine is located in the Sashiogi area of Nishi Ward, Saitama City. It is an Hikawa Shrine. The Sashiogi Hikawa Shrine, one of hundreds of Hikawa Shrines in the Kanto plain. Have you ever heard of Sashiogi Hikawa Shrine? It is quite a small shrine and garden in the middle of a built up residential area. But amazingly it has a parking lot. It fits about six cars. Moreover, it has the most beautiful hydrangea as well as a selection of other seasonal flowers including varieties of daylilies. Even without flowers in bloom the shrine is very picturesque with intricate wood carvings and a red roof, as you can see above.

The hydrangea normally bloom from around the middle of June. However, in recent years they have been blooming from the end of May. According to Saitama City you can see hydrangea here from mid May to early August. However, I have only ever visited in early June as I couple a visit here with Aobaen. This is one of those rare places that I go every year without fail, as I personally love it here. The hydrangea at Aobaen are always early, but they are later at Sashiogi, so I’d normally only get to see the white variety.

>>Another hydrangea shrine in Nishi Ward<<

Sashiogi Hikawa Shrine Hydrangea Festival 2024

The hydrangea festival is currently scheduled for Saturday June 15th and Sunday June 16th 2024, between 10 am and 3 pm. The festival usually coincides with the prime bloom of the colored hydrangea. However, no guarantees. (For posterity; the festival was cancelled in 2020 and 2021 due to the pandemic)!


In early June you can normally see daylilies and the Japanese meadowsweet blooming on the shrine’s grounds too.

You don’t need a lot of time at this shrine. Moreover, if you are coming by car, you can’t really park for long either. But if you are in the neighborhood and looking for an hydrangea shot that isn’t already all over Instagram, Sashiogi Hikawa Shrine might be an option for you!

Don’t miss: just a 25 minute walk or 5 minute drive from the shrine is Aobaen where you will find even more hydrangea. And don’t miss this other off-the-beaten-path hydrangea shrine also in Nishi Ku (Nishi ward), Saitama City.

Autumn Leaf Festival

Sashiogi Hikawa Shrine will have an Autumn Leaf Festival on Saturday December 2nd and Sunday December 3rd 2023. On both days it will be on from 10 am to 3 pm in their “kaede garden”.

Sashiogi Shrine Information

Sashiogi Hikawa Shrine 指扇氷川神社
Address:2810 Sashiogi, Nishi Ward, Saitama, 331-0047
Cost:As little or as much as you want to donate to the prayer box. Free parking
Hours:No official hours
Online:Sashiogi Shrine doesn’t appear to have an official website. There is a very basic page on the Saitama Shrine website here.

It is called the Sashiogi Hikawa Shrine 指扇氷川神社, but Google Maps currently has it as “Akabane” Hikawa Shrine. I’ve sent in a request to have it edited, so hopefully it will be amended in the next few days! If not searching Akabane Hikawa shrine in Nishi ward should bring it up, or use the map below. There isn’t really much of a parking lot, moreover, during the festival I doubt you can use the little bit of space that is there for cars.

The shrine is about a 12 minute walk from Sashiogi Station on the JR Kawagoe Line.

In the area:


    1. Author

      Now if only the rest of the world knew that I’d be laughing all the way to the bank!! Thanks Andy

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