This time, I would like to introduce a teahouse called “Kaji-tei” where wild cats gather, which I think could become a new tourist attraction for Mt. Inari.
Even though they are wild cats, these tame cats are like pets, and this place is like a natural, unenclosed cat cafe.
Fushimi Inari Taisha Shrine is famous for its 1,000 torii gates, and a common sightseeing route is to pass through them and climb Mt. Inari, but this time we will introduce a teahouse called Kaji-tei on the way from the back approach to the mountaintop.
It seems that the owner of Kaji-tei is a cat lover, and there is a sign with a picture of a cat on it when the shop is open. Today, it was already evening, so I didn’t have any pictures of the cat, but there was cat food around the entrance.
I bought cat food and headed towards Mt. Inari from the back road.
When I go to see my cat, I always buy food at a nearby convenience store. I thought I would get bored if it was always the same, so today I bought a side dish for sake called “dried sardines” that people eat.
With “dried sardines” in our pockets, we climb Mt. Inari through back roads known only to locals.
This mountain path is a route that climbs Mt. Inari without passing through the approach, and there are several other paths as well. It’s a deserted mountain road that rarely sees tourists, but it takes less than 10 minutes to reach the teahouse you’re aiming for.
After about 5 minutes of walking along the mountain path, you will see a vermilion torii gate.
A cat welcomes you
As soon as I arrived at the back approach to Mt. Inari, a cat was clinging to my feet, saying, “Meow! Meow!” It’s like they know I’m coming.
When I immediately give him some sardines, he says, “I want more!” and doesn’t try to leave. From there, we walked with the cat that greeted us all the way to the front of the teahouse Kaji-tei.
Cats at the tea shop “Kaji-tei”
Usually there are 5 to 6 cats, and on busy days there are more than 10 cats, but today the store had already fed them, so there were only 3 cats and they didn’t seem hungry.
Waiting here was a slightly tough-looking cat and a shy kitten.
The cats that gather here are tame and wait on the approach for tourists passing by.
Cats also seem to have likes and dislikes, and if they like someone, they’ll tangle around their feet or make a meowing noise as they beg for food. Some cats even lie down and show their bellies, making them photo models for people passing by.
This time, we introduced a natural cat cafe in Mt. Inari. You can’t miss the mysterious Senbon Torii, but on your way back from Mt. Inari, it might be a good idea to take the back approach and stop by.
Spending time playing with cats in nature can relieve your daily stress and make you feel calm.