B1 Intermediate 53 Folder Collection
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Covered with literally thousands of cherry trees, the slopes of Mount Yoshino have been
considered for centuries as the best area in Japan to see cherry blossoms in spring.
However, unknown to many is the rich history that Yoshino
also boasts, being home to a multitude of impressive shrines and temples many of which
have played important roles in the area's centuries-long history.
And it's because of this that the town makes for a worthwhile side trip
from Osaka at any time of the year.
Yoshino played a prominent role in Japan's history during the rule of Emperor Go-Daigo
in the 1300s when an imperial succession dispute led to the establishment of
two rivaling emperors and imperial courts.
The Emperor Go-Daigo fled to Yoshino, south of Kyoto
and his court became known as the Southern Court
as opposed to the newly established Northern Court in Kyoto.
The dispute continued for 56 years until the Southern Court gave in.
In addition, it is the spiritual center and pilgrimage destination for those who practice
the religion of mountain worship known as Shugendo.
Its nature, history, and spirituality make Yoshino a place like no other
and this is exactly where we're going today.
I'm Sam Evans, staff-writer for japan-guide.com.
And today I'm on assignment in Yoshino.
Here's the plan: We'll depart Osaka-Abenobashi station and take the train directly to Yoshino Station
Also note that this route is entirely covered by the KINTETSU RAIL PASS 2day version
which enables savings if also used on a second day to travel to another location covered by the pass
including Kyoto, Nara and Osaka.
From Yoshino Station we'll walk to Kinpusenji
an ancient temple and center of Shugendo.
after this we'll sit down to a lunch of sushi served in a way that is unique to Yoshino.
Next we'll move on to Yoshimizu Shrine.
Before arriving at our accommodation for the night
we'll drop by another important Shugendo temple.
Sakuramotobo, before reaching Chikurinin Gunpoen
a centuries old temple where travelers can stay overnight.
So follow along as we go on a short side trip from Osaka to Yoshino.
Shugendo is a mixture of the religions of Buddhism and Shinto
and concentrates heavily on mountain worship.
After getting the train to Yoshino station, we've made the walk up the mountain
to the main part of town and arrived at Kinpusenji temple
one of the most important sites in Shugendo
and start of the pilgrimage train goes all the way from here up to Mount Ominesan.
So we're at Yakko, a restaurant across the road from Kinpusenji.
And I'm about to indulge in a local specialty, kakinohazushi.
Which is sushi wrapped in persimmon leaves.
Now the reason they do this is because Yoshino is far from the sea.
So, back in the old days they needed a means of transporting this fish up here
without it spoiling.
So what did they do?
They wrapped it in persimmon leaf
because persimmon leaf has a natural antibacterial quality.
That's incredible.
Now that we are properly fed and watered it's time to head ten minutes further up the street
to the historic Yoshimizu Shrine.
Since it was first built over 1200 years ago in the 8th century
Yoshimizu Shrine has been the site of several important historic events.
So we've arrived at Yoshinomizu shrine.
Now in the 14th century Emperor Go-Daigo fled Kyoto and came here to set up his southern
court in opposition to the northern court that remained in Kyoto.
So that means that during that time, this place effectively served as an imperial palace.
Our last stop before finding out accommodation for the night is Sakuramotobo Temple.
Another center of Shugendo mountain worship with a long history
and many facets of the complex to explore
And finally, it's time to check-in at our lodging, Chikurinin Gunpoen
which has been putting up pilgrims for centuries
and is now both a fully functioning ryokan as well as a temple.
So we're here at Chikurinin Gunpoen where we'll be spending the night.
Now, this temple has for centuries been accommodation for the yamabushi
and is known, among other things, for its beautiful landscape garden out back.
For now it's time to tuck-in to this beautiful-looking ryokan meal.
So, itadakimasu.
And that concludes our short side trip from Osaka to Yoshino.
For more information about this itinerary or to watch another video
click the links on the screen now or head over to japan-guide.com
your comprehensive, up to date travel guide,
first hand from Japan.
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Happy travels.
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Osaka Side Trip to Yoshino in Nara | japan-guide.com

53 Folder Collection
Summer published on April 28, 2020
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