Ise Jinju is a Shinto shrine, perhaps the holiest of Shinto shrines, located in the city of Ise in the Mie Prefecture of Japan. It is dedicated to the Sun Goddess, Amaterasu Omikami and is said to hold the Sacred Mirror, one of three sacred items given to the first emperor by the gods. While most shrines are called jingu, the Ise Shrine is referred to as Ise Jinju and sometimes simply as Jinju.
The shrine is really composed of two shrines but the inner shrine is a national treasure and the most important. Visitors to the shrine can see very little of it and it is closed to photography. Still, it is one of the most visited of shrines with over 6 million visitors each year. The shrine is rebuilt every 20 years at exorbitant expense, so that the buildings will be forever new but also forever ancient. The present buildings date from 1993 and are the 61st iteration to date. They are scheduled for rebuilding in 2013..
The shrine is located in the area of Uji-Tachi in Ise City. The area seems more like a town and contains many old buildings and shops and is a nice destination in itself.
Nearby the shrine is the Ise Shima Skyline Drive which winds over the coast line east of the shrine. Along the route is Kongosho-ji
temple which is related to Ise Jinju. It is said that the temple protects the shrine and is sometimes called the inner sanctuary of the shrine.