An outing to Ankoku-ji on my mamachari was always a cultural/adventure-filled/back-to-nature excursion. A 45-minute ride through the backroads in the inaka (countryside) town of Kokufu was an easy ride until the last kilometer when I had to huff it up the hill to the temple. Ankoku-ji was designated a National Treasure because it houses the country’s oldest rotating sutra shelf. I thought the uniqueness of the place would attract lots of visitors, but I hardly came across any. First stop, stare through the slats trying to get a glimpse of the locked up antiquity. (One day I lucked out and got to go in for free. I think the gods were feeling sorry for me. Unfortunately, photos weren’t allowed.) Next, hike up Mt. Taihei behind the temple. Deciding on a route was part of the adventure.
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