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Tuesday, January 10, 2017

A Unique Hiking Experience on Fudo-Zaka Slope (不動坂) in Koyasan (高野山)

Koyasan (高野山), a popular pilgrimage destination for centuries, has been connected to the outside world by a network of pilgrimage trails. While most visitors enter the mountain by cable car nowadays, many of the pilgrimage trails still remain in use.

Part of the pilgrimage trails, the Fudozaka Trail (不動坂; click the map to enlarge), leads to Koyasan from Gokurakubashi Station, the lower station of the Koyasan Cablecar. The steep, paved trail is 2.5 kilometers long and takes about an hour to ascend and less time to descend. The trail ends at the Nyonindo temple (女人堂).[1]

On 11/27/2016, I have decided to descend from Fudozaka Trail instead of riding the cable car.  I was the only person on the trail at beginning.  However, in the middle of the trail, another young blonde girl passed me by swiftly with a big smile on her face.  I was really surprised to see another soul on that rainy day.  Although I was late for the peak colors, I could still tell the autumn views could be awesome about two weeks earlier on that trail.


Fudo-Zaka Slope (不動坂)


After you pass the Nyonindo Temple (女人堂), keep on walking along the bus route.  After about 100 feet away, you can spot a security booth in the front.  Then, you take the trail to the right and begin the descend.

Nyonindo Temple (女人堂)

Front View from Nyonindo Temple (女人堂)


The Forest View along Fudo-zaka Slope (不動坂)

Koyasan Cable Car

Gokuraku-Bashi


The Train Station View from Bridge

References

  1. Pilgrimage Trails
  2. Temple Lodging in Koyasan—Personal Experience
  3. Japan: Temple Lodging at Mount Koya (or Koyasan 高野山) (Travel for a Purpose)
  4. Offical website of the Koyasan Tourist Association
  5. Koyasan Travel: Garan
  6. Koyasan Travel: Okunoin Temple
  7. Japan Travel: Why and How to Use the ATM? (Travel for a Purpose)
  8. 高野山の情報
  9. 高野山 金剛峯寺 Koyasan Kongobuji
  10. Japan: Best Autumn Color Spots near Kyoto (Travel for a Purpose)
  11. Visiting Arashiyama (嵐山) in Kyoto—Personal Experience
  12. Visiting Ohara in Kyoto—Personal Experience
  13. Visiting Nigatsudo Hall (二月堂) in Nara—Personal Experience
  14. Visiting Yoshiki-en Garden (吉城園 / よしきえん) in Nara—Personal Experience
  15. Visiting Fushimi Inari Taisha (伏見稲荷大社)—Personal Experience
  16. Visting Uji (宇治) near Kyoto and Nara—Personal Experience
  17. Travel: How to Ride a Train in Japan (Travel for a Purpose)
  18. Japan Travel — How to Ride a Bus in Kyoto Area (Travel for a Purpose)

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