Daioji Temple Zazen Meditation Experience
Daioji Temple has been recognized as a national valuable cultural resource for almost 600 years and has a cathedral with a thatched roof, which is uncommon in Japan. With a thatched roof cathedral, which is rare in Japan, Daioji Temple has a long history of over 600 years and has been designated as a national important cultural property At the temple, you can experience Zazen, a sitting meditation where you can look within and replenish your mind.
Aso Shrine/Monzen Town
Aso Shrine is dedicated to 12 gods, including Aso’s founder, Takeiwa Tatsu no Mikoto. Since ancient times, this area has been blessed with abundant spring water, which the locals have revered as a ”God’s blessing.” This water is currently served to passers-by at the Mizuki water drawing station. Furthermore, Monzenmachi serves dishes and sweets made with spring water, so it is recommended that you sample them all while strolling around.
Chichibu Night Festival
This festival, which was registered as a UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage in 2016 with a history of 300 years, colored the nights of Chichibu with spectacular floats and fireworks. There are numerous legends about the origins of the festival, including that it is an annual meeting between the female deity of the shrine (Myoken Bosatsu = female deity of the Big Dipper and patron god of sericulture) and the male deity of Mount Mukou (Ryujin = male deity of water). Another legend has it that the festival is a way of returning the water that brought about a good harvest to the mountain (Mt Mukou). Fireworks and colourful floats brighten up the night in Chichibu.
ASCETIC BUDDHIST MONKS FILE PAST THE FIVE-STORY PAGODA
The approach to the mountaintop shrine is paved with stone steps that pass through two rows of sugi (cedar) trees which are more than 350 years old. While making your way up to the shrine, make sure to pause at the magnificent five-story pagoda. The natural beauty is striking enough to have earned a three-star rating in the Michelin Green Guide Japan.
Hiyo Moss Garden
Natadera Temple is excellent scenery which was founded 1,300 years ago. The temple grounds contain Kigan Yusenkyo and other unique naturally occurring rock formations.
Usa Jingu Shrine
You can enjoy the “Usa Jingu Shrine,” one of Japan’s best shrines. There is also Tashibunosho, which has retained its appeance for over a 1000 years and used to be the manor of Usa Jingu Shrine. In addition, at Beppu Onsen, one of the world’s leading hot spring areas, you can feel the Earth’s breath from the steams rising from everywhere.
The rock garden at Kokawadera Temple
Make sure to also visit Kokawadera Temple to see its rock garden filled with eye-catching arrangements unlike any other garden in Japanese.
Sakuraunbashi in Takato Castle Ruins Park
A town surrounded by the Central Alps on the west, the Southern Alps on the east, and two Alps. In spring, Takatookohiganzakura in Takato Castle Ruins Park is called the most beautiful cherry blossoms beneath the heavens.