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Hiking Kibune to Kurama

Kurama Travel Blog

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Distance                         4.5 Kilometres

Duration                          2-3 hours  

Standard                        Easy

Start                               Eizan Kibune Guchi station

Finish                             Kurama station

Nearest Town                Kyoto 30 minutes by train.

kibune shrine
Osaka one hour 15 mins by train

Tips                                Buy a one day ticket from any Keihan station. Ticket price starts at 1,140 yen to 1,660 yen.

                                       Take an outdoor hotspring at Kurama  Adults 1100 yen, Children 700 yen.

 

The hike starts at Eizan Kibune Guchi station , exit the station and follow the road up the mountain following a beautiful mountain stream for two kilometres to the beautiful village of Kibune.

bridge along the hike
Kibune is well known for its ryokans (Japanese style hotel).  In the Summer you can have meals on the platforms built over the rushing water of the Kibune river. This would be a great finishing point , so the hike could be done in reverse starting at Kurama.

Before crossing a beautiful red bridge which leads to the hiking track up over the mountain to Kurama. It is best to walk about five minutes through the village of Kibune to see the Kibune shrine, which is easily recognised by its huge red shrine gate. The stair case up to the shrine is also very beautiful with lines of red lanterns and a couple of cedar trees that are 600 and 700 years old.

The shrine itself only needs about 5-10 minutes to explore and admission is free. People come to the shrine to pray in times of draught to pray for the rain to come or for it too stop raining if the area has had too much rainfall.

stairs so many stairs
The statue of the white horse represents it to  stop raining, the statue of the black horse represents it to  rain. To get back on the hiking trail you have to walk back through Kibune and cross the red bridge which leads up to the mountain towards Kurama passing through a cedar forest.

The stairs leading up the mountain are quite steep, until you come to Kimone Sando, a clearing covered with the tangled, exposed roots of old cedar trees. A very interesting place with a great opportunity for a few photos. From here the hiking becomes a lot easier and you'll come to the Okuno -in Mao-Den, where the warrior Minamoto Yoshitsune completed his training with a Tengu Goblin before joining the powerful Minamoto clan. From here its a 20 minute walk to the main hall of Kurama dera temple.

The Kurama Dera temple belonged to the the Tendai Sect of Buddhism until 1949 when it became an independant brand of Buddhism known as Kurama -Kyo.

ceder tree with lots of moss
The temple was founded in 770 by the monk Gantei. The temple is located just below the peak of Mount Kurama. From the square out of the front of the main hall offers magnificent views over Mount Kita and the Hira mountain ranges.

 From Kurama dera temple it is a 15 minute walk  down stairs to the village of Kurama. On the way down they are currently doing some repair work to the hiking course. The stairs give way to a gravel road, walk down this and you will come across the inochi (life statue). The three tiered statue represents the three aspects of the god Sonten, the deity worshipped in Kurama-kyo buddhism. Soon past this you will come to the Yuki shrine which has two gigantic cedar trees behind the gates to the shrine. The yuki shrine holds a unique fire festival on October 22

Less than five minutes from Yuki shrine you will reach the village of Kurama from here you can turn right at the road and walk five minutes to the Kurama train station to take you back to Kyoto or you could turn left like we did and walk to Kurama hotsprings  or if you are lucky enough like we were to be picked up by the free shuttle bus that runs about every 30 minutes between the station and the hotsprings.

roots of the ceder trees
The hotsprings were a great way to relax and soothe the muscles after a great day in the mountains. 

 

 

 

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kibune shrine
kibune shrine
bridge along the hike
bridge along the hike
stairs so many stairs
stairs so many stairs
ceder tree with lots of moss
ceder tree with lots of moss
roots of the ceder trees
roots of the ceder trees
Okuno- in-maodo where the warrior …
Okuno- in-maodo where the warrior…
600 year old ceder tree
600 year old ceder tree
700 year old ceder tree
700 year old ceder tree
ceder forest
ceder forest
roots of the ceder tree
roots of the ceder tree
roots of the ceder trees
roots of the ceder trees
rest time
rest time
kurama dera
kurama dera
a mountain view from the temple
a mountain view from the temple
repairs to the track
repairs to the track
yuki shrine
yuki shrine
the gate to yuki shrine
the gate to yuki shrine
kurama village
kurama village
steps to Kurama hot springs
steps to Kurama hot springs
Tengu goblin who trained the warri…
Tengu goblin who trained the warr…
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photo by: JPLfr13