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Mount Koya (Koyasan)

 

At a glance

Mount Koya is a Japan’s representative holy town which offers travelers an unparalleled atmosphere of Japan’s spiritual and cultural depth as well as natural beauty. Sacred sites and pilgrimage routes in the Kii Mountain range was registered as World Heritage. 

Koya-san’s sacred lifestyle is best experienced by staying in a Shukubo, temple lodging where you spend a night in an authentic Japanese room, have a Shojin ryori, a vegetarian food and join prayer and chanting. It is true that Koya-san is not as secluded from the secular world as before with increasing number of tourists. The atmosphere here, however, is still far more mysterious and peaceful than any other town in Japan, which makes someone call this town the center of lost spirit.

 

Shukubo

There are 53 temples which offer lodging for tourists and pilgrims.

 

The temple building has an authentic architectural beauty. You can contemplate looking at gardens with plants, ponds or rocks. Hospitality by the young priests in training is warm. The experience of morning prayers and chants is special. People are amazed by how artistic Shojin Ryori cuisine can be by using vegetables only.

 

Though there might be some inconveniences involved in staying in a temple compared to staying in urban hotels, such as limited privacy or shared bath, the whole experience in a monastery is highly inspirational and memorable.  

 

If you would like to stay in one of the Shukubos, please contact us. We would like to recommend it and book it for you.

Highlights

Danjo Garan

Danjo Garan is a temple complex originally founded by Kukai (Kobo Daishi). Though most of the current buildings are reconstructed ones due to fires in the past, magnificent buildings, including impressive Konpondaito Pagoda, in the complex still make us feel this has been the monastic center for learning esoteric practices of Shingon Buddhism.

 

Okunoin

Over 200,000 tombs, including ones for famous samurai lord, are lined along the stone paved path, deep in the forest filled with hundreds year old cedars. The path leads to Kukai’s Mausoleum, the most holy place in Koya-san.

 

The other places to visit include Kongobuji temple, the main temple of Shigon Buddhism, Reihokan, the museum displaying a number of cultural properties and many others.

 

Access and planning tip

Mount Koya can be reached by cable car and Nankai Line from Namba station, southern center of Osaka. 

 

If you are planning to visit Koya, you might come up with such questions as: 

- I would like to travel to Koya as well as Nara, Kyoto and Osaka. What is the most efficient way to move around? 

- How many days would I like to stay in Mount Koya?

- Which Shukubo would you recommend?

- Do you think it is possible for me to reach my next destiatnon if I leave Koya after morning walk in Koya?

 

In order to include a visit to Mount Koya in your Japan itinerary by taking the comfort and efficiency of your whole itinerary into consideration, please contact us for our custom travel services.