Absolutely one of my oddest finds ever in the Florida Keys! WOW, talk about unexpected and out of place, this is definitely a fish out of water! Oops, with this being off shore by 20 feet and in the Gulf Of Mexico, I guess it’s literally like a fish in water. It’s finds like this that make what I do so rewarding… “I NEVER know what awesome unexpected new find is around the next corner”… and I LOVE IT!
A torii is a traditional Japanese gate most commonly found at the entrance of or within a Shinto shrine, where it symbolically marks the transition from the profane to the sacred. They are however a common sight at Japanese Buddhist temples too, where they stand at the entrance of the temple’s own shrine. Their first appearance in Japan can be reliably pinpointed to at least the mid-Heian period because they are mentioned in a text written in 922.
You can find this Japanese torii gate on the campus of the Florida Keys Community College just outside of Key West at one of its two entrances at Mile Marker 5.0 & 4.3 onto the horseshoe-shaped College Road. Drive down the road about 1/2 mile from either entrance and there it be behind by the Tennessee Williams Theater.