Wakayama

  •  Sandanheki Cavern

    Sandanheki Cavern

    Wakayama Nature

    Take an elevator 36m underground from Sandanheki to a rare cavern created by marine erosion. Over 2.7 million years, the rough waves from Kumanonada carved out this shape. It is said that the Kumano navy that led the Minamoto Clan to victory in the Genpei War used to hide their ships here. Japan's largest Muro Benzaiten is enshrined here, said to bring luck and happiness to people.

    Location:

    Shirahama, Nishimuro District, Wakayama Prefecture

  •  Inami Festival (Inami Hachiman Shrine - Yamaguchi Hachiman Shrine Festival) (Inami Hachiman Shrine Festival Wakayama Prefecture Intangible Cultural Asset)

    Inami Festival (Inami Hachiman Shrine - Yamaguchi Hachiman Shrine Festival) (Inami Hachiman Shrine Festival Wakayama Prefecture Intangible Cultural Asset)

    Wakayama History Festivals・Events

    The Inami Hachiman and Yamaguchi Hachiman festivals are held in advance of the other autumn festivals in the Kinan region. At the Yamaguchi Hachiman festival, six festival floats and portable shrines are carried to Inan Beach, where dances such as the Saiga Odori which has ties to the Kishu-Saiga group, Yakko Odori, and Shishimai are performed. Come to see the festival floats fiercely clash together. Alternatively, at Inan Hachiman, four festival floats and portable shrines jump into the Inan river, and the men dressed in festival costumes carry the floats across the river while up to their shoulders in water, which is an incredible sight to see. The river crossing ceremony is very rare, nationally.

    Location:

    Inami, Hidaka District, Wakayama Prefecture

  •  Arida Mandarin Oranges (Orange Picking)

    Arida Mandarin Oranges (Orange Picking)

    Wakayama Nature Industry・Technology Food

    Arida is known nationwide as a producing area for Arida Mandarin Oranges, with 400 years of history and tradition. Sawako Ariyoshi's novel, Aridagawa, states "The whole mountain in its golden splendour made me question my own eyes"The mountain, split down the middle by the Aridagawa River, is orange with mandarins from October to December. Additionally, in May the orange flowers bloom, and Arida City is enveloped in the aroma of orange flowers. Visitors are invited to come and pick mandarin oranges here in the most famous mandarin-producing region.

    Location:

    Arida City, Wakayama Prefecture

  •  Scabbard Fish at Minoshima Fishing Port

    Scabbard Fish at Minoshima Fishing Port

    Wakayama Industry・Technology

    At Minoshima Fishing port, the water of the inland sea from Osaka Bay meets the Kuroshio tide from the south,making it a fishing spot with the best of both, a very rich seafood resource. It is the biggest source of scabbard fish in Japan, and 8.1% of the scabbard fish caught in Japan are fished here. The Minoshima Fishing port, also called Tatsugahama, features approximately 300 yellow and white two-tone colored fishing boats and 1000 pull-cars to carry caught fish, and the sight of them all lined up is a highlight. Also, fishermen often sell their own fish at reasonable prices at the morning market. It's also fun to watch the spirited back-and-forth between fishermen.

    Location:

    Arida City, Wakayama Prefecture

  •  Mt. Koya Oku-no-in  Five-storied Stone Pagoda of Sugen-in

    Mt. Koya Oku-no-in  Five-storied Stone Pagoda of Sugen-in

    Wakayama Nature History

    The Mt. Koya Oku-no-in five-storied pagoda is a stone tower design unique to Japan that began towards the end of the Heian period and continues to the present day. The shape references the five elements that buddhist teachings say all things are made of: earth, water, fire, wind, and air. Said to be the first made, is at Sugen-in (Hidetaka Tokugawa, second generation shogun's wife Ogo) memorial tower was built in 1627, and it is the largest of the five-storied pagodas with 6.6m in height and a base size of 8 tatami mats. Even visitors from foreign countries with a long history of "stone culture" will be impressed by its size.

    Location:

    Koya, Ito District, Wakayama Prefecture

  •  Kishutoshogu

    Kishutoshogu "Waka Festival"

    Wakayama Nature History Festivals・Events

    This is the main festival of Kishutoshogu shrine, which was built to honor Tokugawa Ieyasu, father of the first daimyo lord of Kishul. It was once counted among the three major festivals in Japan, and while it was not held for a time during the war, it has been passed down through 400 years of history. Kishu Toshogu has 108 steep stone steps, and one ton portable shrines are carried down these steps in the "Mikoshi Oroshi" ceremony which starts the festival. This is followed by a procession of approximately 1000 people who perform their many entertaining talents in the Togyo Gyoretsu, which is a soul-stirring and showing event.

    Location:

    Wakayama City, Wakayama Prefecture

  •  Awashima Shrine

    Awashima Shrine "Hina-nagashi"

    Wakayama History Festivals・Events

    Known as the home to a guardian deity of women, visitors to Awashima Shrine pray for easy childbirth and pregnancy. In the Hina-nagashi festival, the main hall is stuffed with doll festival dolls collected from all over the country. Dolls purified in the main hall are loaded into a wooden boat, and pulled into the gentle spring ocean harbor where a thousand paper cranes have been released into the water. The shops lining the road to the shrine sell fresh seafood such as sea snails, whitebait, and sea bream.

    Location:

    Wakayama City, Wakayama Prefecture

  •  Tomogashima

    Tomogashima

    Wakayama Nature History Facilities・Townscapes

    The Kitan Strait is home to four islands: Jinoshima, Torajima, Kamishima, and Okinoshima. They are collectively known as Tomogashima. Regular boats leave from Kada port, and arrive at Okinoshima in approximately 20 minutes, where a hiking course that tours the fort remains is popular. Additionally, the western edge of island that cross through the meridian line of Japanese Standard Time (135 degrees east longitude) is home to the eighth white western-style lighthouse built in Japan, that helps to protect the comings and goings of ships in the strait even today.

    Location:

    Wakayama City, Wakayama Prefecture

  •  Katsuura Fishing Port

    Katsuura Fishing Port

    Wakayama Facilities・Townscapes Industry・Technology Food

    The Nachi Katsuura Fishing Port boasts the largest volume of non-frozen bluefin tuna in Japan. Visitors can view the bluefin auctions, and can enjoy fresh bluefin as sashimi and in other dishes at the restaurants, hotels, and inns in the town.

    Location:

    Nachikatsuura, Higashimuro District, Wakayama Prefecture

  •  Nachi Waterfall

    Nachi Waterfall

    Wakayama Nature History

    The object of worship at Kumano Nachi Shrine is the Nachi Waterfall, with the tallest water head in Japan. The roar of the falls and view of the forest of 800 year-old cedar trees is a spectacle.

    Location:

    Nachikatsuura, Higashimuro District, Wakayama Prefecture

  •  Tama the Station Master

    Tama the Station Master

    Wakayama Facilities・Townscapes Industry・Technology

    Ever since the local train line connecting Wakayama City and Kinokawa City got attention for having a cat for a station master, visitors have come from around Japan and abroad to visit Wakayama Railways' Kishi Station. The station has a cafe and Tama-related items on sale. Catch a ride on the Tama train, and everything will be "Tama World". Recently, "Nitama Station Master" has appeared at Itakiso Station, and its popularity is growing.

    Location:

    Kishigawa, Kinokawa City, Wakayama Prefecture

  •  Mt. Koya

    Mt. Koya

    Wakayama Nature History Facilities・Townscapes

    Surrounded by eight peaks, it is as if Mt. Koya is surrounded by the petals of a lotus. Kobo Daishi (Kukai) opened the mountain as the basic training place for Shingon Buddhist secret teaching. Even today, many monks continue the teachings of Kukai, and continue to do ascetic training here. There are 52 pilgrims lodgings on the mountain, and visitors can experience the history and culture of Mt. Koya through vegetarian Buddhist cuisine or by attending a Buddhist religious service.

    Location:

    Koya, Ito District, Wakayama Prefecture

  •  Hashigui Rocks

    Hashigui Rocks

    Wakayama Nature

    Long ago, in Kushimoto, a demon challenged Kukai to build a bridge in just one night, and Kukai brought giant stones down from the mountain and stood them in the sea, making a line of bridge pillars. The demon was worried that Kukai would win the challenge, and imitated the sound of a rooster, and Kukai thought the time limit had been reached, and he stopped working halfway through making the bridge. The scenery changes depending on the season and time of day, but the Hashigui Rocks captivates the hearts of those who view it.

    Location:

    Kushimoto, Higashimuro District, Wakayama Prefecture

  •  Kumano Kodo (Hyakken-gura)

    Kumano Kodo (Hyakken-gura)

    Wakayama Nature History

    The World Heritage Site, "Kumano Kodo". In ancient times, people came here to renew their spirit on this healing trail. Partway through the trail, there are spots where the peaks of the Kii Peninsula mountains can be seen. Hyakumengura is the most popular spot to view this sight.

    Location:

    Hongu, Tanabe City, Wakayama Prefecture

  •  Engetsu Island

    Engetsu Island

    Wakayama Nature

    Engetsu Island is a small island with a full-moon shaped hole in the middle. The best time to view it is when the sun is setting. In summer, it's 6:30pm, and it's 4:30pm in winter, when many sightseeing visitors and locals alike gather to see the beautiful sight. In spring and autumn, there is a beautiful moment when the setting sun shines through the hole in Engetsu Island, which is particularly beautiful.

    Location:

    Shirahama, Nishimuro District, Wakayama Prefecture

  •  Kumano Kodo (Ogumo Torigoe)

    Kumano Kodo (Ogumo Torigoe)

    Wakayama Nature History

    The World Heritage Site, "Kumano Kodo". In ancient times, people came here to renew their spirit on this healing trail. The Kumano Kodo was also a location for imperial outings of retired emperors, and along the trail are "oji" shrines collectively called the 99 Ojis that are dedicated to the Kumano Mikogami gods. The retired emperors used to visit these ojis while traveling the long road.

    Location:

    Hongu, Tanabe City, Wakayama Prefecture

  •  Sun-dried Pickled Plums

    Sun-dried Pickled Plums

    Wakayama Industry・Technology Food

    Wakayama Prefecture's pickled plums are the top brand among pickled plums.

    Location:

    Minabe, Wakayama Prefecture

  •  Oto Matsuri

    Oto Matsuri

    Wakayama Nature History Festivals・Events

    Every year, the Oto Festival is held at Kamikura Shrine on February 6. It's amazing to see the participants holding burning torches in their hands as they run down the 538 steep stone steps of the road approaching the shrine.

    Location:

    Shingu City, Wakayama Prefecture

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