Kanda Shrine was first built during the Tenpyo Era (730AD) in the fishing village of Shibasaki, near the modern Ōtemachi district. It was only in 1616 that the shrine was moved to its current location and this was to accommodate the expansion of Edo Castle. Today it is conveniently located a short distance on foot from Akihabara, Yushima Seido and Ochanomizu Station. It enshrines three deities : Daikokuten, the god of good harvests and matrimony. Ebisu, the god of fishermen and businessmen, and Taira Masakado a feudal lord of the 10th century who was revered and deified.
Despite being a humble, yet important shrine, Kanda Shrine is also very popular among anime fans thanks to the anime “Love Live!” in which the character of Nozomi Tojo serves as a shrine maiden at the Kandamyoujin shrine. Since then she has become the shrine’s official mascot.
Finally, Kanda Shrine holds every odd year the Kanda Matsuri. It has been observed since the 1600s when Tokugawa Ieyasu celebrated his decisive victory at the battle of Sekigahara. Being one of Tokyo’s three major Shinto festivals, the Kanda Matsuri is EXTREMELY popular among Japanese and one of the rare places where Yakuza can proudly display their tattoos in public!