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Kinpu Shrine

Nara

A quiet place with a variety of seasonal flowers
A shrine for mountain asceticism registered as a UNESCO World Heritage site

Photo credit: Nara Visitors Bureau, Photo: Tatehiko YanoKinpu shrine is dedicated to Mount Yoshino, which is famous for cherry blossoms and is considered to be a local god who is said to guard gold mines. The old shrine deep in a quiet part of Mount Yoshino used to be a place for ascetic training up to the Edo Period (1603-1868) and was also a bustling place with inns and teahouses. Many practitioners visit the place for ascetic training in the mountain even today. In July 2004, the entire area was registered as a UNESCO World Heritage site as part of "Sacred Sites and Pilgrimage Routes in the Kii Mountain Range."

Abundant nature is preserved here. Trees grow luxuriantly in all seasons adorned with seasonal flowers, such as hydrangea in early summer, in addition to cherry blossoms. Along a part of the approach where trees are cut down, new cherry trees are planted and will grow into a row of cherry blossom trees with Japanese atmosphere.

According to legend, Minamoto Yoshitsune, one of the most popular warrior heroes in Japan, hid himself from his pursuers in the shrine. The hall where Yoshitsune hid himself is called "Yoshitsune Kakure-to," but the building is said to be a latter-day reconstruction. Anyway, the low-keyed and austerely elegant style shows us the Japanese culture at the time.

Information

Address: 1651 Yoshinoyama, Yoshino-gun Yoshino-cho, Nara
Phone: 0746-32-3081 (Yoshino-cho Commerce, Industry and Tourist Department)
Admission Fee: Free admission to the grounds
Directions: Take a short walk from Yoshino Station on the Kintetsu Yoshino Line (one hour and 50 minutes from Shin-Osaka) to Yoshino Ropeway Yoshinoyama Station, and then ride Yoshino-Omine Cable Car for 25 minutes to Okusenbonguchi and walk for 5 minutes. (Car) one hour and 30 minutes from Katsuragi Interchange on the Minami-Hanna Expressway.

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