Spots in Wakayama Area

  • Okunoin Temple
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    5.0
    1247 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Wakayama Pref. Itogunkouyachou Kouyasan
    "One of the Two Great Holy Sites of Mt. Koyasan, this land is where Kukai (Kobo Daishi) died while meditating. There is also a mausoleum where Kukai is said to still be meditating today. On the two-kilometer approach path that connects to the mausoleum features cedar trees which are 700 years old, as well as over 200,000 gravestones and memorial monuments of royalty to commoners. The toro lantern tower in front of the mausoleum is a must-see. At the front on the inside, the Kishin lanterns devoted by Kishin shonin and the Shirakawa lanterns devoted by the Emperor Shirakawa have remained burning for over 1000 years as an ""unquenched flame."" The area ahead of the Gobyo bridge closest to the mausoleum is holy land, so taking photographs is prohibited."

    Okunoin Cemetery is really impressive, big, with history. We did the night visit and I thought that its not worth paying to have a guide. They explain you things, but nothing you cant know taking a...

  • Kumano Nachi Taisha Shrine
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    4.5
    616 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Wakayama Pref. Higashimurogunnachikatsurachou Nachisan 1
    One of the Three Head Kumano Shrines which serve as the headquarters of all Kumano shrines nationwide. Unlike the other two, however, the origin of this shrine lies in a primeval faith which sees the Nachi Falls deep in the mountains as sacred. At the affiliated Hiro-jinja Shrine, the falls themselves are worshipped, and since ancient times this shrine has been visited by numerous faithful and other visitors asking for a long life. Visitors can drink the water at the falls’ basin from a platform directly in front of the falls; the water is said to give longevity. The shrine’s grounds contain six vermillion lacquered buildings such as the main nave, hall of worship, and treasure house, as well as numerous other points of note such as the Stone of the Yatagarasu (a mythical three-legged crow), and a massive 850-year-old tree planted by the noble Taira no Shigemori.

    It takes 20-30 minutes walk either by stairs or walking up to get to the temple but its all worth it. You can see the temple with nachi falls as the background. There is Kwan Im statue as well.

  • Kumano Hongu Taisha shrine
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    4.5
    534 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Wakayama Pref. Tanabeshi Honguchouhongu
    This Shinto shrine is one of the Three Head Kumano Shrines which serve as the headquarters of all Kumano shrines nationwide. Known as the first stop on the penance-filled Kumano Kodo Pilgrimage, since ancient times this shrine has been visited by countless worshipers of the Kumano faith, which seeks to achieve self-enlightenment through penance. The main building was erected in the Asuka period and was relocated to its current location after being damaged in the Great Flood of 1889. After climbing 158 stone steps through a cedar forest, the shrine’s four hinoki bark-thatched buildings will appear, which enshrine Ketsumiko no okami and the shrine’s three other chief gods.

    This shrine is very nice and even 3 of 5 parts are from origin (saved by the flood) , this worth it to come. You can smell the tree odor in this shrine. Roof are amazing

  • Kongobuji Temple
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    4.5
    499 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Wakayama Pref. Itogunkouyachou Kouyasan 132
    "The main temple of the Koyasan Shingon sect, this temple is the core of Mt. Koyasan, holy land of the Shingon Esoteric Buddhism founded by Kukai (Kobo Daishi). This place is functioned as temple office for the whole of Mt. Koyasan. The best features include the lacquer paintings of the Kano school and the Unkoku school in the main hall which has a characteristic cypress-thatched roof, and the ""Banryutei"" which is one of the largest stone gardens in the country. In this stone garden, the cloud sea is represented by white pebbles, while two dragons, male and female, are depicted protecting the inner shrine."

    Kongōbu-ji temple is quite big, with a nice entrance. It has several halls and alleys. Its free and its one of Koyasans highlights. When we were there, it was a rainy and cloudy day so we couldnt...

  • Seiganto-ji Temple
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    4.5
    269 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Wakayama Pref. Higashimurogunnachikatsurachou Nachisan 8
    A Tendai sect Buddhist temple which is the first station on the Saigoku Kannon Pilgrimage. Once a great Shugendo Shinto-Buddhist temple dedicated to Nachi Falls, it was divided into the Kumano Nachi Taisha Shrine and Seiganto-ji Temple with the official order separating Buddhism and Shintoism in the country. The temple has long been a holy place in the Kumano faith, which seeks self-enlightenment through the Kumano Kodo Pilgrimage. The temple’s main object of worship, a figure of Cintamanicakra, is said to have been found at the basin of Nachi Falls and enshrined here by Ragyo, a priest who came to Japan from India during the reign of Emperor Nintoku (313-399). The vermillion three-tier pagoda behind the main temple nave harmonizes with the falls and creates a beautiful (and popular) photo spot.

    I didnt venture in, but was all around it trying see best vantage point to incorporate it, the pagoda and falls into a good photo.

  • Danjo Garan Temple
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    4.5
    369 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Wakayama Pref. Itogunkouyachou Kouyasan 152
    Together with the Okunoin, one of the two most sacred sites on holy Mt. Koya. It is also the first site where the famed monk Kukai began building in order to erect his main dojo for his esoteric Shingon teachings. The temple is comprised of 19 buildings, including the Konpon Daito tower, the symbol of the temple; the main temple hall, and Goeido hall. The main temple hall, located in the center of the grounds, is the central temple nave of Mt. Koya and almost all of the most important ceremonies on the mountain are conducted here. The temple’s principle object of worship is a figure of Bhaisajyaguru; this statue is a hidden image and is not displayed to the general public.

    The whole temple area is quite impressive, with lots of templs, halls.. and everything within the nature. If youre lucky, it wont be too crowded. In if youre even luckier, youll have a nice day...

  • Adventure World
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    4.0
    25 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Wakayama Pref. Nishimurogunshirahamachou Katata 2399
    This entertainment complex opened in 1978 focusing on the theme of interaction between people, animals, and nature includes a theme park, aquarium, and zoo. The zoo has succeeded in breading a total of 12 pandas, the greatest number outside China itself. In the popular Panda Love exhibit, daily backyard tours are held (advance reservation required). In the Safari World, visitors can view the animals up close in environments close to their natural habitats from vehicles such as a special bus. There are also walkable areas to stroll through. During the summer break period, the park remains open in the evening as well.

    リブロースステーキセット、あらびきハンバーグセット、ライオンポテト、生ビール(大)コーラ、で¥6500ほどでした。ファミレスで言うならロイホっぽい価格帯。味は悪くなくごはんの炊き具合も良かったです。 テーブルクロスが塗り絵になっているのですが、色鉛筆が尖っていないタイプなので色鉛筆を持ち込むとよりお子さんも喜ぶと思います。

  • Kamikura-jinja Shrine
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    4.5
    193 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Wakayama Pref. Shingushi Kamikura 1-13-8
    A Shinto shrine located in 1 Chome Kamikura, Shingu City. Situated on sacred ground where the god Kumano Omikami first descended to Earth. The Kodobiki Boulder, considered a sacred natural object and deity, is also located on the shrine grounds at the top of over 5000 natural stone steps. The Oto Matsuri, held each year on February 6, is an unusual festival in which white robed men carrying torches lit with a sacred flame run down a series of stone steps. The festival is designated an Important Intangible Folk-Cultural Property.

    the shrine is ok. the hike up is more interesting and abit taxing up rock steps which is pretty steep at some areas..

  • Nanki Shirahama Toretore Market
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    3.5
    26 Reviews
    Shopping
    Wakayama Pref. Nishimurogunshirahamachou Katata 2521
    Located in Shirahama Town, Nishimuro County, Wakayama Prefecture, Toretore Market is one of the largest seafood markets in western Japan and is operated by the local Katata Fishery Cooperative. Boasting grounds some 50 thousand square meters in size, the market is filled with fresh seafood not only from Wakayama but around the country. A diverse array of processed goods, meats, vegetables, and even Wakayama souvenirs are sold here, and the market bustles constantly with visitors. Market highlights include the giant tanks filled with fish swimming around while waiting to be sold and the popular tuna butchering shows. Visitors can eat sushi and seafood rice bowls at Toretore Yokocho; the market’s seafood barbecue is also popular.

    We went there after lunch and we realized we should have come here for lunch. There were BBQ facility (you have to pay to use) to cook the very fresh seafood caught locally (you must buy them there...

  • Ueno Park
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Wakayama Pref. Aridashi Miyazakichou 1166-1
    A public municipal park located across the Arida River from Minoshima Station on the Kii Main Line. The park was created in 1950 by Toyomatsu Norioka to honor the souls of all the innocent, non-military persons who died during the battles of the Pacific War. In 1967, it was gifted to the city and turned into a public park. Numerous cherries, azaleas, and other attractive trees and plants grow on the park’s 5,186 square meter grounds. Today, the park is renowned in spring for its beautiful blossoming cherry trees, known locally as the “Muen-san no Sakura” (“Cherry Trees of the Innocent”). The top of the park’s mountain commands a view of the mouth of the Arida River and the beach of Hatsushima, famous Shikoku destinations. Buddhist memorial services are held in the park in spring and summer which attract many visitors.
  • Koyasan Reihokan Museum
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    4.5
    159 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Wakayama Pref. Itogunkouyachou Kouyasan 306
    This facility preserves and displays invaluable Buddhist imagery and paintings from temples on Mt. Koya, such as the Kongobu-ji temple, the head temple of Shingon Buddhism. Opened in 1921, the museum's collection currently includes some 28 thousand important works of art, including 21 National Treasures, 143 Important Cultural Properties, and 16 Wakayama Prefecturally Designated Cultural Properties. During the extremely popular Great Treasure Hall Exhibition in summer, the museum displays the Eight Great Youths, a sculpture designated a National Treasure that was carved by Unkei, the greatest Buddhist imagery maker of the Kamakura period.

    Koyasan recently celebrated it 1200th anniversary, and some of the treasures in this museum are that old, loaned from some of the 100 monasteries on this mountain. The museum is small and so displays...

  • Shirasaki Ocean Park
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    4.0
    73 Reviews
    Transportation
    Wakayama Pref. Hidakagunyurachou Obiki 960-1
    With cobalt blue waters and a shining white coastline, some call the Shirasaki Ocean Park the Aegean Sea of Japan. Visitors enjoy diving, snorkeling and other marine activities, along with camping and barbecuing. At the restaurant you can enjoy the trademark light and fluffy waffles, while sitting on the terrace overlooking the ocean.

    You can enjoy significant view of the combination of blue sea and white rock, which is like the Aegian Sea. You can also enjoy various marine sports like fising or scuba-dybing.

  • Kuroshio Market
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    3.5
    17 Reviews
    Shopping
    Wakayama Pref. Wakayamashi Kemi 1527
    You’ll find this seafood market on the manmade Wakayama Marina City island in Wakayama Bay, Wakayama City, Wakayama Prefecture. The building has a retro Showa-period atmosphere complete with a fresh fish market with catches from the nearby sea and all over the world, a food court where you can enjoy a seafood rice bowl and sushi, and restaurants with tons of seafood options. There’s also a spectacular tuna slicing show held three times a day, not to mention a seafood barbecue area where you can feel the sea breeze and see the ocean while grilling fresh fish you bought at the market.

    駐車場から果物即売所を抜けた先に黒潮市場があります。中はお土産やと食事の購入ができる場所が半分ずつのスペースを割いてます。この日はあまりにも外気温が高く外の浜焼きBBQを利用しようと言う気にはなれませんでした。握りずしのセットと和歌山名物[梅そば]を注文しました。お寿司と蕎麦は別の店で購入、食べる場所は別にもうけてありました。味はなかなか新鮮で美味しかったです。セットで1000円位であれば十分満足...

  • Shirahama Aquarium, Kyoto University
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    4.0
    117 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Wakayama Pref. Nishimurogunshirahamachou 459
    This aquarium is annexed to the Kyoto University marine laboratory, and it’s open to the public for a fee. There are four different exhibits, with sharks, rays, large migratory fish, species from the neighboring waters, freshwater fish, and more on display. It also has one of the country’s best collections of invertebrates, including sea anemones, sea cucumbers, and more. There’s a 250-ton tank as well, making this a popular tourist spot. It’s also great for academic study.

    This is an aquarium located in the marine station of Kyoto University. Its small, but highly educational. Professors take time to curate maybe during weekdays. Entrance fee is only 600¥, free for...

  • Hiro-jinja Shrine
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    4.0
    133 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Wakayama Higashimuro-gun Nachikatsuuracho Nachisan
    A 20-minute drive from JR Kii-Katsuura Station. This Shinto shrine is a subordinate shrine to Kumano Nachi Taisha Shrine, counted among the Three Main Kumano Shrines; Nachi Falls is the shrine's shintai, or object of worship. The shrine has no front shrine and instead visitors worship in an area around 200 meters in front of the waterfall. Accordingly, visitors may participate in a formal prayer service not only in the Kumano Nachi Taisha Shrine's Honden but also here in front of the waterfall; and after the 30-minute service is over, participants can listen to a lecture on the history of the shrine. The shrine sells lucky charms depicting a dragon god based on an ancient legend that a dragon lives in the falls.

    It sure gives you perspective on how high the falls are when you reach it foot; you have an opportunity to try some of the water.

  • Mt. Koya
    Travel / Tourism
    Wakayama Pref. Itogunkouyachou Kouyasan
    Mt. Koya is sacred ground in Japanese Buddhism that was first utilized by the famed monk Kukai in the Heian period. The entirety of Mt. Koya is regarded as a single temple—the Kongobu-ji Temple—and the mountain is dotted with temples in 117 locations. A veritable mountain-top mecca 900 meters above sea level, over 30 percent of the population of people living on the mountain are priests. Of particular note is the Danjogaran, a temple first built when Kukai opened his main dojo for his esoteric Shingon teachings. The temple grounds contain 19 buildings, including the Konpon Daito tower and gorgeous main sanctuary.
  • Michinoeki (Roadside Station) Kaki no Sato Kudoyama
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    4.0
    69 Reviews
    Transportation
    Wakayama Pref. Itogunkudoyamachou Nyugou 5-5
    A rest area located in Kudoyama Town, Ito County, Wakayama Prefecture which is a popular destination from which to explore the area and as a place to buy local souvenirs. The facility hosts the World Heritage Information Center, where you can learn about the World Heritage sites and history of Kudoyama, an area connected to Warring States period samurai Sanada Yukimura. There’s also an outdoor play area with large playground equipment and a market selling local agricultural and specialty products direct from area farmers. The rest area’s bakery and café has an eat-in space where you can enjoy fresh-baked bread, pastas, and other meals.

    Today was the first day of the 2017 Sanada Festival on the grounds of this facility. After opening ceremonies, they had a gun/rifle demonstration by townspeople dressed in the military uniforms of...

  •  Yunomine-oji ato
    Travel / Tourism
    Wakayama Pref. Tanabeshi Honguchouyunomine
    This shrine in Yunomine, Hongu-cho is one of the 99 Oji Shrines. On the nationally historic Kumano Kodo pilgrimage trail, it's about five minutes on foot from Yunomine Onsen's Tsubo-yu hot spring. Located in the center of Yunomine Onsen, it was once next to Tokoji Temple, which honors Yumune Yakushi, a form of the Medicine Buddha. In 1903 the temple's Yakushido and the main shrine building burnt down, and the shrine was rebuilt in its current location on a hill. It's said the legendary Oguri Hangan found favor with the gods on his Kumano pilgrimage, and recovered from serious illness through the healing waters of Yunomine Onsen's hot springs. The shrine also holds a ceremony known as the Chigo Dance.
  • Kokawa-dera Temple
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    4.0
    65 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Wakayama Pref. Kinokawashi Kokawa 2787
    This temple is located in Kokawa, Kinokawa City. It is the third pilgrimage site of the “Saikoku Sanjusansho” pilgrimage that takes visitors to various holy sites associated with Kannon. It was constructed at the end of the Nara period in 770 by Otomo no Kujiko. The main temple building was rebuilt in 1720, and it features a very rare design that combines a single-roof worship hall with a double-roof main hall, making it an Important Cultural Property.

    We drove from Negoro-ji Temple to Kokawa-ji Temple, both of which stand at the southern foot of the Izumi Mountains north of the Kinokawa River. Kokawa-ji Temple is believed to have been established...

  • Niutsuhime Shrine
    rating-image
    4.5
    59 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Wakayama Pref. Itogunkatsuragichou Kamiamano 230
    You’ll find this shrine along Prefectural Route 4 in Kamiamano, Katsuragi Town. Niutsuhime’s child is enshrined here, and it is said that Takanomiko, enshrined in the second hall, transformed into a hunter and led Kobo Daishi to Mt. Koya, who then borrowed Niutsuhime’s holy land to erect a shrine atop the mountain and teach the secrets of Shingon esoteric Buddhism. It is customary to worship here before ascending Mt. Koya.

    This is the obligatory stop for the travels up the Mt Koya. You pray and appease the local mountain deity. There are old cedar trees, and of course the bridge. The temple design is regular shinto.

Wakayama Areas

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Wakayama prefecture unites pilgrims, food lovers, and culture buffs in a tranquil corner of Japan at the base of the Kii Peninsula. The setting for many a Kumano Kodo pilgrimage trail, Wakayama invites those in search of spirituality from one side of the prefecture to the other, from the 100-plus Buddhist temples of the sacred Mount Koya in the west to the inspiring temples of the Kumano Sanzan set among breathtaking nature in the east. Once the grueling hike is complete, make a beeline for Wakayama city to savor some of the country’s most delicious ramen noodles.

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