Nikko Travel Blog› entry 1 of 1 › view all entries
This past weekend I finally made the trip down to Nikko. I have been planning this trip for like 3 weeks but everytime I was going to go I ended up not for whatever reason. So i finally went and it was well worth it.
I took the 2 hour train ride from Shimodate to Nikko. I got there and took the first bus to The temple and shrine area. Nikko is a very beauitful city, with a lot of nature to offer. So, I get off and head up to the ticket booth to get my tixs for entry into each of the grounds. The first building I went into was the Sanbutudo. It was just a huge building with 3 huge gold leafed buddhas in it. Not really a prayer temple, I think it was just a place they used during ceremonies and people could come and pray if they wanted.
After here I walked up the Yakusido or the entrance area to Toshugo. It has a huge 5 story pagoda on the left of the entrance that is a remake done in 1818, the orginial was built in 1640. It was very beautiful, one hell of a way to start the tour. I then headed up the first of many sets of stairs i would be climbing that day. It led up to the main area of Toshugo temples. There was a horse stable with the life cycle of monkeys carved on it. It also had the famous depiction of the saying "see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil," it was a cool carving. I walked around here because there were about 5 buildings on this first landing. Another being a buddhist library that contains about 7000 books and scrolls.
Next was a walk up some more steps and into the Yomei-mon area. It is a small area with a lot of statues and carvings of animals, flowers and gold leaf statues. Its funny because when they built this area the Japanese were worried that the beauty of the area would offend the gods so they placed on of the pillars in the entrance way upside down as a deliberate error.
From here I walked towards Nemuri-Neko where the sleeping cat is.
The next area is Futarasan-jinja which is basically a smaller version of Toshugo. It had a lot of little temples and buildings, nothing too exciting. There was some musicians there playing the famous japanese drums. It was a good show, very loud and they were good.
The next was an even smaller version of Toshugo called Taiyuin-byo. It had fewer buildings but again it was very beautiful surrounded by these huge cedars and more stairs that I was so sick of climbing so i sprinted up...i almost passed out at the top. This area has the tomb of leysau's grandson.
So, this has so far been about 2 hours of walking and I didn't have any lunch because their just wasn't any food in the area I was. So, instead of stopping, I kept going.
The next hike was off to the Gamman-Ga-Fuchi Abyss. It is about a 30 minute walk from the area I was so I decided to walk it. I started off and noticed there was a little concrete wall next to the river, so I decided to go down to the river and walk along it.
I started walking back when I came upon the Tamozawa Imperial Villa where the emperor of Japan spent most of his time during WWII. I didn't get to go inside because it was closed but the grounds where very nice, however I later learned that most of it was rebuilt so, the original building has been replaced, it was still really nice area.
Nikko was beautiful, I can't wait to plan my next trip!