Soji-in Koyasan
VISIT | Osaka, Koyasan
Among the monks
Experience a pristine and spiritual sense of well-being like never before as you step through the threshold of Mount Koya. A city founded by the monk Kukai, later known as Kobo Daishi who founded Shingon Buddhism, has flourished for over 1200 years as a sacred site and beloved by many who look to find enlightenment. Designated as a UNESCO site in 2004 as part of the three sacred sites of the Kii Mountain Range, this sacred site is also the end point of the Kumano Kodo pilgrimage route.
day 1


Meet your English speaking guide at your hotel in Osaka. Transfer by private car to Gokurakubashi Station. Here, transfer to the cable car and make your way to Koyasan station. Your car will be waiting for you at Koyasan Station.

** Depending on the season, there is a special train running from Hashimoto station which offers observatory decks for unique views

Upon arrival, visit the Kongobuji Temple, established as a place for learning the techniques of the Shingonshu sect of Buddhism. The Kongobuji Head Temple, which refers to the entire mountain of Koya san, was developed by the monk Kobo Daishi upon his return from China in 816. The Konogbuji Temple was built by Toyotomi Hideyoshi and rebuilt in 1861.

Next visit the Danjo Garan, where Kobo Daishi built his central temple complex. Legend has it that Kobo Daishi threw his sankosho (Buddhist ceremonial tool) from China after completing his studies. When looking for a place to start his new religion, he came across his sankosho stuck in a pine tree on Koyasan. This pine tree is still standing on the grounds.

Transfer to Soji-in, a Buddhist Monastery, where you will stay the night.
Enjoy Shojin ryori, the traditional vegan Buddhist cuisine, for dinner. Based on the concepts of five flavors, five cooking methods, and five colors.

day 2


If you like, join the monks for their morning sermon, which will start at 6am. No guide will join you for the sermon and attendance is voluntary.

Enjoy breakfast before meeting your guide for another special experience of shakyo, or sutra copying. It is said that copying the sutras will bring you peace and harmony to mind and body. After your lesson, travel by local bus to Okuno-in Cemetery. Extending approximately 2km from Ichinohashi Bridge to Kobo Daishi’s mausoleum, hundreds of cedar trees line the path. Along the path and among the trees are over 200,000 gravestones and memorial pagodas of individuals ranging from important historical figures to locals. As time permits, also visit sites such as the Reihokan Museum and the Tokugawa Mausoleum.

Return to the monastery for dinner.

day 3


Experience the morning sermon again this morning before breakfast.

After breakfast, meet your English speaking assistant for transfer back to Osaka by private car.


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