A temple where you can pray for business success. A scenic view of Osaka on the way to Mt. Ikoma-san.
Mt. Ikoma-san is located in the northwest part of Nara, dividing Nara and Osaka prefectures, and belongs to Kongo-Ikoma-Kisen Quasi-National Park. Extending from north to south, the mountain has been crossed by many roads connecting Osaka and the ancient Yamato Province since olden times, where materials and culture flowed back and forth. On the Kuragari-toge Pass, 455 meters above sea level, along the Kuragari-toge Nara-kaido Highway which was built in the 8th century, there are old post stations and stone pavements, which tell us what a highway in the olden times was like. The highway has been selected as one of the best 100 roads in Japan.
Halfway up the mountain is Hozan-ji Temple, commonly known as "Shoten-san of Ikoma." The temple was founded in the 17th century as a place for ordinary people to pray for success in business. From the precincts of the temple, where the Hon-do (main temple), Taho-do and other structures stand, an oddly-shaped large rock called "Han'nya-kutsu" can be seen on the mountain in the background. Nearby there is also a western-style building, the Shishi-kaku (lion pavilion), decorated with stained glass.
The Shigi-Ikoma Skyline road running along the ridge in the Ikoma Mountains is a pleasant motorway that provides you with an enjoyable drive. Every time your car turns the corner along the winding road, you can enjoy superb views of the Osaka Plain and the Nara Basin in the distance.
The view from the Narukawa-toge Pass, just about midway along the road, is particularly magnificent, especially at night. The lovely cherry blossoms and azaleas in the spring and the colored leaves in the fall are extremely popular among the many visitors. Also, a hiking route is well set out alongside the road.
[Rail] 2h 15 min to Kyoto Station by JR Tokaido Shinkansen Line (Nozomi), and 50 min from Kyoto to Ikoma Station by Kintetsu Line.
*It takes 2h 45 min from Tokyo to Kyoto Station by Hikari Shinkansen.
[Rail] 20 min from Kintetsu Namba to Ikoma Station by Kintetsu Line.