- Title: Large crowds visit Japan's most popular shrine for new year prayers
- Date: 1st January 2017
- Summary: TOKYO, JAPAN (JANUARY 1, 2017) (REUTERS) PEOPLE WALKING AND QUEUING IN FRONT OF SHRINE VARIOUS OF PEOPLE THROWING COINS AND OFFERING FIRST PRAYERS OF THE NEW YEAR COINS VARIOUS OF PEOPLE THROWING COINS AND OFFERING FIRST PRAYERS OF THE NEW YEAR (SOUNDBITE) (Japanese) 55 YEAR-OLD VISITOR, MASAMI IMAZU, SAYING: "I visited to pray for world peace and health of all the people in the new year." (SOUNDBITE) (Japanese) 69 YEAR-OLD VISITOR, HISASHI KOBAYASHI, SAYING: "I wish all my family members will spend the new year happily and healthy." PEOPLE THROWING COINS AND OFFERING FIRST PRAYERS OF THE NEW YEAR IN FRONT OF SHRINE HANDS OF PERSON PRAYING PEOPLE PRAYING (SOUNDBITE) (Japanese) 49 YEAR-OLD VISITOR, TAKEHARU UNO, SAYING: "As I run my own business, I wish that the economy will improve this year." MAN AND WOMAN PRAYING PEOPLE THROWING COINS AND OFFERING FIRST PRAYERS OF THE NEW YEAR IN FRONT OF SHRINE LANTERN OF SHRINE GATE OF SHRINE SIGN ON GATE READING (Japanese): "NEW YEAR'S GREETINGS" PEOPLE WAITING FOR SUNRISE NATIONAL FLAGS OF JAPAN
- Embargoed: 16th January 2017 04:04
- Keywords: New Year Tokyo shrine prayers
- Location: TOKYO, JAPAN
- City: TOKYO, JAPAN
- Country: Japan
- Topics: Religion/Belief,Society/Social Issues
- Reuters ID: LVA0015X90PXJ
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Huge crowds made their first visit to Japan's most famous shrine on Sunday (January 1), praying for a good year.
Following the Japanese New Year tradition called 'Hatsumode', visitors queued in front of the shrine from early morning to throw coins into the offering space in front of the main shrine and make a wish for the new year.
"I visited to pray for world peace and health of all the people in the new year," said Masami Imazu, 55 year-old body therapist, who visit the shrine every year.
"I wish all my family members will spend the new year happily and healthy," said Hisahi Kobayashi 69 year-old visitor, who came to the shrine early in the morning.
Meiji Shrine, one of the most famous sightseeing spots in Japan, attracts more than 3 million visitors every year during the first three days of the year.
"As I run my own business, I wish economy will improve this year," said 49-year old visitor Takeharu Uno.
Welcoming the new year of the rooster, the zoatic animal of 2017, Meiji Shrine displayed welcome boards with paintings of roosters on its main gate. The Chinese zodiac system which is also used by Japan, identifies each year with one of 12 animals.
People across Japan are expected to flock to local temples and shrines till Tuesday (January 3).
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