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The Beautiful Scenery of Nikko

The road by Kodama-do

There are many famous tourist attractions like Nikko Toshogu Shrine in Nikko, Tochigi Prefecture. Visiting Nikko, you will find wonderful scenery outside of the famous tourist spots.

In the vicinity of the Toshogu Shrine lies a beautiful world surrounded by green moss and is an absolutely beautiful view! The road around here is one used by locals but the pedestrian traffic is quite low and so the atmosphere here really is quite relaxing.

There is a small temple on the way here known as Kodama-do and is enveloped with a decidedly spiritual atmosphere. A long time, the monk Kukai underwent training at Hachiyorengei Pond near Shiraito Falls at Takino Shrine. At this time, two white gems, a small one and a large one, revealed themselves as the temposei, assistant stars to Heaven.

Kukai enshrined the small gem which was the origin of the Kodama-do. The larger gem was enshrined in the Myoken-do temple. However, as a result of a natural disaster that occurred during the Meiji Period, Myoken-do temple was lost. In any case, having a star enshrined at a temple is quite the rare thing in Japan.

Visitors may feel a little strange as there is a torii gate in front of the temple. Torii gates are associated with the Shinto faith while temples with Buddhism. The two came together here as part of an old doctrine, Shinbutsu Shug, that saw a merging of Shinto and Buddhism as a religious idea.

The Kodama Do is registered as a part of the Shrines and Temples of Nikko which itself is listed as a World Heritage Site. There are 103 structures, including the Nikko Toshogu Shrine and Taiyu-in, that are registered here.

Besides this, the scenery in Nikko is quite beautiful. Visitors can come and see beautiful red maples during the autumn season. So while the famous sites are good for sightseeing, I also recommend walking the local paths for another beautiful view of Nikko.

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