Have you heard of or watched the popular Japanese anime movie: Your Name (Kimi no Nawa)? If so, you would recall that the main heroine, Mitsuha, worked as a miko — a Shinto shrine maiden — and that was absolutely one of the many parts of the movie that captured my fancy. After all, when I saw her perform kaguramai (a Shinto ritual ceremonial dance with bells and chimes) as a miko in one of the movie’s scenes, I was utterly enthralled.
The profession instantly got me curious and I was glad when I found out that as a visitor, I could head over to Hyogo Prefecture’s Amagasaki Ebisu Shrine in Amagasaki City of Japan (near Osaka) to sign up for a miko experience package — and so, I did!
For a day (or technically, an hour) I did not only learn about the profession but I also got to try being a miko, and you bet that was such an enriching and fun affair! .