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Designated a World Hertiage Site, this is the first site a Ryukyu King visited after ascending to the throne, and also where Ryukyu's supreme priestesses were ordained and performed rituals. In legend, the ritual site was created by Amamikiyo, the goddess who created the Ryukyu Islands. Prayers are made facing Kudaka Island, the place where Amamikiyo first descended from the heavens. Two giant stones form the entrance to the prayer area.
Naminoue Shrine which means ‘Above the Waves Shrine’ is a Shinto Shrine. Shinto is an ethnic religion of the people of Japan, a religion made to establish a connection between the present and the ancient past. The shrine is situated atop a bluff overlooking the Naminoue Beach. The shrine is a beautiful Red Japanese structured hall. The place is very quiet and peaceful, very soothing to one’s mind. The shrine is open to visitors. Silence is strictly followed, no noise in any manner is allowed. A beautiful place to visit when in Naha.
Built in 1368, the Gokoku Temple grounds also contain the Bettelheim Monument, the Kozakura Monument, and the Naminoue Shrine. Originally built to propagate Shingonshu Buddhism, it was used for foreign reception by the Tokugawa Shogunate, and also as a residence of the British missionary, Bettelheim. The Kozakura Monument honors the 700 children who died when an evacuation ship was bombed during World War II.