Japan, Nature, Temples & Shrines, Travelling Japan

To No Hetsuri – Cliff Towers by the river

To No Hetsuri literally means cliffs shaped like towers. The popular sightseeing spot near Shimogo in Fukushima prefecture is a naturally created valley, where the erosion from wind, rain and water have shaped the rocks along the Ōkawa river. The rocks or “towers” have been assigned names like Eagle Tower, Hawk Tower, Lion Tower, House Tower, Turret Tower, Nine-ring Tower, Elephant Tower,…

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Japan, Otawara & Nasu (local area), Temples & Shrines, Tourist attractions

Unshoji Temple

Unshoji – a Shingon Buddhist Temple in Nishinasuno area also known as the Cloud temple. This beautiful temple in wooded grounds north of Nishinasuno station, is a peaceful and lovely walk. The entire woods are dotted with amazing statues including an large and impressive Fudo-myo near the main entrance In all there are 33 buddha statues throughout the grounds, as…

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Cultural, Japan, Temples & Shrines, Tochigi Prefecture, Tourist attractions


Nikko National Park is in Tochigi prefecture and about an hours drive from home..  It a huge area containing many interesting sights, walks, historical buildings and other tourist spots.  Nikko is a town within the National Park which is probably most famous for its World Heritage temples and shrines. The main temples and shrines being Rinno-ji; Temple, Toshogu Shrine and…

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Cultural, Japan, Temples & Shrines, Tokyo

Hie Shrine, Tokyo

This lovely Shinto shrine and grounds is very close to the centre of Tokyo, hidden behind the DIET building. Its open most days from 5 am – 6pm and is a really tranquil place in one of the worlds busiest cities. The original shrine was built in 1478 in the grounds of Edo castle, which is now the site of…

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Otawara & Nasu (local area), Temples & Shrines

Nogi shrine & Lake

April in Tochigi is like most of Japan, Cherry Blossom time and Nogi Shrine is one of the lovely viewing spots in this area. Despite the on and off rain, I went to Nogi shrine to see the Sakura.  Nogi shrine is in the Nishinasuno area and is one of Tochigi prefectures historical sites. At the back of the shrine is a beautiful…

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Otawara & Nasu (local area), Temples & Shrines, Tochigi Prefecture

Daoji Temple, Kurobane, Tochigi

I’ve visited Daoji a number of times,its one of my favorite temples.  The gardens are wonderful regardless of the time of year, they look stunning, but each time it looks so different, depending on the season. It’s a working Soto Zen temple that is more than 600 years old  – established in 1404.  Within the complex are 7 thatched buildings are…

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