Home of Japanese scops owls, famous for their distinctive hoot. Mountains overlook the East Mikawa Plain and the Mikawa Bay.
Mt. Horaiji-san is a volcanic mountain in the Oku-Mikawa region in eastern Aichi. The mountain has been designated as a scenic spot and a precious natural monument of Japan, and is located within Tenryu-Oku-Mikawa Quasi-National Park. This mountain is noted as the home of Japanese scops owls, famous for their hooting, which sounds like "Bu (Buddha), Po (sutra), and So (priest)" .
At the gate way to the mountains, there is Mt. Horai-ji Natural Science Museum where you can learn about the ecology of the specific animals and plants in the mountain. Stuffed Japanese serows and Hodgson's hawk eagles are put on display. There are also exhibits of peculiar things to Mt. Horai-ji-san, such as ferns, lilies, and other plants and rocks and minerals. You can enjoy a panoramic view of the East Mikawa Plain and Mikawa Bay from the top of the mountain.
Horai-ji Temple is located halfway up Mt. Horai-ji-san in the middle of the dense forest of old cedars and Japanese cypresses that spread from the approach path of 1,425 stone steps to the precincts Tosho-gu Shrine, built by the third Tokugawa Shogun Iemitsu in the 17th century, is to the east of the main temple. The interior walls of Tosho-gu are decorated with elaborate carvings that resemble those in Tosho-gu Shrine in Nikko, Tochigi.
[Rail] 2h 15 min to Toyohashi Station by JR Tokaido Shinkansen Line. 35 min from Toyohashi to Hon-Nagashino-jo Station by JR Iida Line (limited express), and 10 min from the station to Ho-rai-ji by bus.
[Rail] 1h 20 min from Shin-Osaka to Toyohashi Station by Shinkansen.