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Full Nikko Japan Journey Information – 18 Issues to do and Locations to See

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Best of Nikko Japan

Having the probability to spend 4 nights in Nikko, we managed to soak up all it needed to supply and fell in love with not solely the tradition however the magnificence and folks of the land.

In the event you go to Tokyo or anyplace else in Japan make sure to add Nikko to your record.

We had a personal driver throughout our time in Nikko, however the fantastic thing about this vacation spot is that public busses go to all areas we record under.

1. Shinkyo Bridge

Shinkyo Bridge in Nikko Japan

It’s the most recognizable attraction in Nikko and it has the honour of being Japan’s oldest bridge.

Situated within the coronary heart of downtown, vacationers flock to see the Shinkyo Bridge and pay the 300 Yen to stroll throughout the sacred web site. However there’s a option to see it with out individuals.

Nikko Japan Shinkyo Bridge Entrance

Many day excursions solely have the choice of a fast snap of the Shinkyo Bridge, however we had the nice fortune of staying on the Historic Nikko Kanaya Lodge the place we had been a simply quick 5-minute stroll to the bridge.

Dave and I awoke at sundown to arrange our cameras properly earlier than any crowds surfaced from their slumber. Having all of it to ourselves, we imaged the legend of the Shinkyo Bridge and will see why the Shogun selected to make his dwelling right here.

Crossing the Shinkyo Bridge in Nikko Japan

Our information Yoshi instructed us of the primary priest that settled the realm in 766.  He could not cross the Daiya River however was helped by two serpents making a bridge and letting him throughout.

This bridge represents that legend. When crossing the bridge, you might be strolling within the footsteps of legends.

The bridge is easy in design, however the setting is gorgeous with speeding water racing by means of a deep valley.

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2. Nikko Kanaya Lodge

Nikko Kanaya Hotel Japan

The Nikko Kanaya Lodge is the oldest resort lodge in Japan. It’s one in all a handful of Japanese Basic Motels that draws the older extra conventional patrons from Tokyo.

Staying on the Kanaya Lodge is like stepping again in time. It is a spot the place waiters serve five-course French delicacies with white gloves and the workers treats you as if you’re a visiting dignitary.

Nikko Kanaya Hotel Charles Lindburgh

Nightly excursions are provided sharing tales from 100 years in the past when the likes of Eleanor Roosevelt, Albert Einstein and Charles Lindbergh graced their property.

The constructing may use a little bit of an improve however the character is charming with a darkish lounge full with leather-based chairs and a hearth which will or could not have been designed by Frank Lloyd Wright so we would not need it change an excessive amount of.

Nikko Kanaya Hotel Lounge

However our conventional room was fashionable and stylish full with the standard cutting-edge bogs.

Many individuals who do not stay on the lodge, usually cease by for lunch or dinner to get a style of outdated Japan.

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three. Tosho-gu Shrine

Nikko Japan Toshogu Shrine

The primary attraction in Nikko is the Tosho-gu Shrine devoted to Tokugawa Ieyasu.

Tokugawa Ieyasu was probably the most highly effective man in Japan in 1600. He was named Japan’s first Shogun after uniting the nation from fierce civil conflict.

His Mausoleums is situated inside the Tosho-gu Shrine and is among the most necessary shrines in all of Japan.

Tosogu Inner Shrine steps in Nikko Japan

To achieve his mausoleum we first walked by means of the maze of temples earlier than reaching the 207 stone steps resulting in the interior shrine.

It was opened to the general public in 1965 and it’s right here that the primary Shogun of the final and longest samurai authorities is laid to relaxation.

The shrine has gone by means of three completely different variations from the primary picket in 1617 to a stone model in 1683 and its ultimate gold, silver and copper model reaching 5 meters tall that we witnessed at the moment.

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The Grounds of Tosho-gu Shrine

Toshogu Inner Shrine nikko Japan

Whereas the shrine is a very powerful monument within the Tosho-gu, the grounds are fascinating to go to.

When getting into there’s a massive 5 story pagoda simply outdoors the Shinto Gate. At any time when we entered a Shinto Gate in Japan, I knew we had been about to expertise one thing particular.

This huge advanced consists of authentic statues and pillars relationship again to the 160o resulting in the sacred storehouses and sacred stables.

Shinto Gate in Nikko Japan

We additionally admired the “hear no evil, see no evil, communicate no evil” monkey carvings that greet you upon entrance.

Yoshi identified that the elephant carvings on the outer buildings had been significantly fascinating as no one had ever seen an elephant once they had been constructed.

You’re allowed to go contained in the temples (footwear off) however we solely spent a short while because the excursions had been in Japanese and we needed to soak up the remainder of the grounds which require time to actually soak in.

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four. Rinnoji Temple – Zen Expertise

Rinnoji Temple Entrance Nikko Japan

Proper subsequent door to Tosho-gu Shrine is the Buddhist temple of Rinnoji. It was a breath of recent air getting into the temple grounds away from the crowds of Tosho-gu.

One thing we discovered fascinating is how Shinto and Buddist shrines had been constructed beside one another.

We realized that despite the fact that they’re completely different religions, they work in concord. Shinto and Buddist religions blur the strains and you may usually see individuals worship each Buddhism and Shintoism because the Shinto perception is extra fluid and believes in a knowledge of find out how to dwell life in concord with nature.

We may really feel the sense of calm when visiting Rinnoji and understood what the aim of those pagodas and temples was within the first place.

Nikko Japan Monk

Participating in a Zen expertise helped me to really feel a way of calm and peace that I desperately wanted after affected by jetlag and the crowds of Tokyo.

It had been a whirlwind few days flying from Canada after which exploring Tokyo however the Zen Expertise introduced me again to my centre.

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Rinnoji Temple Zen Experience Nikko Japan

That is a rare expertise the place a Buddhist Monk leads a meditation within the Rinnoji Temple. I questioned how it will go together with not understanding the language however then understood that the language of tranquillity is all the identical.

Clear your thoughts, calm down and Simply Be.

He walked clockwise across the temple as I sat in silence. With every breath, I felt extra relaxed and the 20-minute meditation flew by. Earlier than I knew it, he stopped in entrance of me the place I bowed my head and he appeared to virtually give me the blessing of the Queen knighting a soldier.

Zen Experience Nikko Japan

Via my translator he then stated I’ve now realized three issues “To regulate aspiration, to regulate physique and to regulate thoughts.”

I hope that stays with me as a result of I would like some adjusting!

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5. Kanmangafuchi Abyss

Kanmangafuchi Abyss Nikko Japan

The Kanmangafuchi Abyss is just not solely a picturesque glen crammed with winding rivers and waterfalls but additionally a group of Bake Jizo; statues that take care of the lifeless overlooking the river.

The temple monk instructed Joshi that earlier monks made these statues to commemorate those that had died.

Locals have adorned the Jizo statues with pink capes and caps to ward of spirits from their youngsters.

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Kanmangafuchi Abyss Statues

I used to be instructed that the statues have a mystical aspect. That whenever you rely them, the 2 numbers aren’ the identical.

Not one to surrender a problem, I counted them and for the primary set I counted, I got here out with the identical quantity. However then I used to be instructed I’ve to incorporate the second set as properly.

After I counted that one, I had two completely different counts. 82 and 84. Oooh!

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6. Akechiddaira Ropeway

Akechiddaira Ropeway Nikko Japan view

Our subsequent cease in Nikko was the Akechiddaira Ropeway. This gondola takes you up for a panoramic view of the area.

Dave was excited to take of the winding roads he noticed on the Web however rapidly realized that the photographer that claimed this was the view lied and he really took his photograph with a drone.

Observe: Drones should not allowed in Nikko as it’s a Nationwide Park.

Akechiddaira Ropeway Nikko Japan

We aren’t a weblog that ever promotes breaking the principles, so we did not put up a drone to take that shot. Disgrace on that photographer for mendacity and for flying a drone!

However I digress.

When visiting the Ropeway, give your self loads of time. Site visitors may be excessive if you’re visiting throughout the fall colors and simply a short time outdoors of the city of Nikko we hit a site visitors jam going up the mountain.

The mountain has 47 hairpin turns. Sure, being Japan, they’re very organized and so they even have numbers on every flip to maintain rely.

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Akechiddaira Ropeway Cost

The ropeway stops midway and the strains are lengthy. We waited in line for about 30 minutes earlier than getting on the gondola.

Fortunately there are bogs, retailers, and meals stalls so you possibly can tag staff out of the road to have a look round.

Observe: Japanese public bogs are in contrast to anyplace we have ever been. They’re pristine. Many have heated seats and bidets and they’re spotless. In the event you ever wish to go to a public bathroom, Japan is the place to take action.

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7. Mount Hangetsu

View from Mount Hangetsu in Nikko Japan

In the event you like a great hike, Mount Hangetsu a wonderful one. It is a couple of 30-minute hike up from the excessive parking zone of Mount Hangetsu to the summit and it is a good looking stroll that gives panoramic views.

Our occasion set off about an hour earlier than sundown by means of a well-marked path. It could actually get very chilly in Nikko outdoors of summer season so make sure to gown in layers.

Platform at Mount Hangetsu in Nikko Japan

We noticed individuals on our manner down strolling up in t-shirts and a skirt. We warned them that the solar was happening and it was chilly, however they only giggled.

However it may be harmful, so be ready. Whereas on the summit, the snow got here in and we reduce our sundown images session quick.

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Hiking up Mount Hangetsu in Nikko Japan

We did not thoughts although, as a result of we had lovely dramatic views of Lake Chuzenji and the encompassing mountains being engulfed by clouds.

While you attain the highest, there is a small lookout platform that makes for a great base. However it’s small, so if images is in your thoughts, get there early to order your spot!

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eight. Kegon Falls

Kegon Falls in Nikko Japan

Nikko is thought for its waterfalls and Kegon Falls is definitely probably the most spectacular. I like how Japan makes every part straightforward.

If this had been Canada, we would must spend the day mountain climbing up and all the way down to the bottom of the falls. However in Nikko, you wait in line from the parking to board and elevator that takes you down.

Did You Know: Kegon Falls is ranked as one in all Japan’s most lovely waterfalls.

Plunging 100 metres from Lake Chuzenzi, Kegon Falls is highly effective. You possibly can view it from three completely different platforms.

Having some fun at Kegon Falls Nikko Japan

When you exit the elevator, there is a lengthy underground walkway resulting in the platforms which have a café, a memento store and a images store.

The water is so highly effective that our information tells us the cliffs are transferring again a couple of inches every year.

9. Kayaking Lake Chuzenzi

Kayaking Lake Chuzenji in Nikko Japan

For one thing out of the strange a kayaking journey on Lake Chuzenzi is so as.

Our information Kenny has a dream to go kayaking within the Yukon, however at the moment he took us across the lake to soak up the views.

It is a simple paddle and so they provide all of the gear together with wetsuits, pdf’s, booties and gloves.

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Ready to Kayak in Nikko Japan

We kayaked on the final day of the season, so it was a bit nippy outdoors, however we had been toasty heat as soon as we had on all our gear.

For the time of 12 months, it was shocking to see simply how many individuals had been out on the water.

I’m at all times impressed with the Japanese tradition, they get out and benefit from the outside.

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10. Public Baths at Kinugawa Kanaya

Nikko Japan Onsen Public Baths

Nikko is thought for its sizzling springs and the Kinugawa sizzling springs have been used because the 1600s for his or her therapeutic functions.

Staying on the Kanaya Kinugawa Lodge overlooking the water, set the stage for a rare two nights in Kinugawa.

We had by no means skilled a public bathtub in Japan, but when there may be one place to take action, it’s right here at this lodge.

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Deb in Japan Public Bath Nikko

Tokyo’s elite come to this lodge to spend a weekend unwinding from stress doing nothing however having fun with 2-hour meals and numerous hours enjoyable within the rotating baths.

Women and men go to separate baths and the baths are rotated every day to present every intercourse an opportunity to expertise the out of doors sizzling tubs, completely different steam rooms and saunas.

There’s a very strict etiquette to visiting a Japanese bathtub, so keep tuned on our Youtube channel and upcoming weblog posts to learn how to go to a Japanese Public Bathtub.

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11. Ryuokyo Canyon

Nikko Japan Ryuokyo Canyon

I have to admit, we did not’ know what to anticipate from the Ryuokyo Canyon. When asking Yoshi what it was all about, we thought, “okay, we’ll stroll down, have a look at a canyon and stroll again up releasing up a while in our schedule to see another issues.

It seems, that Ryuokyo Canyon is to not be missed!

The stroll down was lengthy and we crossed many individuals huffing and puffing their manner again up the steps. We weren’t thrilled about having to climb again up after the very fact, however as soon as we obtained there, all our inhibitions disappeared.

A river runs by means of the deep canyon wall like a serpent which lends properly to its identify, “Valley of the Dragon King”.

Ryuokyo Canyon Walk Nikko Japan

Guests can stroll throughout rope and suspension bridges, there are platforms to the lookout and forested trails.

The four-km hike rivals lots of the nice canyon hikes of the world and Nikko has made it very straightforward with steps, boardwalks and bridges.

Give your self not less than a half a day to discover.

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12. Katayama Sake Brewery Tour

Nikko Japan Sake

I believe the spotlight of our time in all of Nikko was our Katayama Sake tour.

A household run group since 1880 runs every day brewery excursions the place you possibly can study of the normal strategies that they nonetheless use at the moment.

Our information .. was very gracious and took his time to inform us of the processing that occurs over the winter from October to February.

Nikko Japan Sake Sampling

They nonetheless do so much by hand and solely brew small batches.

We handled ourselves to a bottle of their greatest sake, which received the gold medal on the Japan Sake Awards in 2017. It’s so good! page=40

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13. Make Soba Noodles at Kirifuri

Nikko Japan Making soba Noodles

In the event you ever thought the noodles you eat should not made with love, you will assume once more whenever you take a Soba Noodle making course.

We arrived on the Kirifuri Camp anticipating a fast lesson earlier than consuming an enormous bowl of noodles for lunch.

It was a 90-minute exercise the place we realized that making Soba Noodles isn’t any joke!

Most soba cooks are males and I can perceive why. They want the dough by hand folding it 20 occasions every manner over and over till it’s blended to perfection.

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Nikko Japan soba Noodle Making

… shared his grandmother’s secret recipe with us and Dave labored exhausting kneading dough.

He thought that was exhausting sufficient, however then the rolling and slicing started and he realized that there’s a lot extra to cooking noodles than simply throwing them in a pot.

Making soba noodles is a murals. Dough kneaded with power, rolled to perfection and reduce with precision.

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Soba Noodles Nikko Japan

The tip result’s nothing wanting scrumptious. We have had many a noodle soup in our day, however we have by no means simply loved consuming a mound of noodles.

In the event you love cooking lessons, that is one to strive in Japan. It showcases conventional strategies in a household run institution that clearly places loads of satisfaction and love into its noodle making.

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14. Shave Ice at Shogetsu Himuro

Shave Ice Nikko Japan

I do know what your considering, so what it is shaved ice, I’ve had it in Hawaii, or I can get a snow cone on the honest. However do you know Shave ice originated in Japan and like every part there, they take it to a complete new stage!

The shave ice of Shogetsu Himuro is world famend.

Nikko is thought for its pure water and so they’ve been making shave ice right here since 1894.

The scrumptious deal with we had is made out of a close-by lake that’s meticulously cared for over the winter months.

Shave Ice in Niko Japan Huge

Ice grows at an inch per day over the winter and it’s reduce up in blocks, eliminated and transported to coolers the place it’s used for the subsequent 12 months to make dessert for guests.

Traces may be as much as an hour lengthy at H?getsu Himuro and as soon as we tasted it, we may perceive why. It takes about 5 minutes to make every portion and when it’s served, they suggest consuming it instantly.

The ice was so mild and absolutely that it felt like a cloud in your mouth.

I’ve by no means tasted something prefer it.

15. Tatami Expertise

Tatami Room Nikko Japan

Japan is fashionable and excessive tech and zooming into the 21 century, however it is usually crammed with traditions.

When staying at motels just like the Kanaya Kinugawa Lodge or the Lodge Shikisai on Lake Chuzenji you will need to ebook a tatami room.

Moving into one in all these motels transports you again in time. You’re inspired to put on the Yukata robes supplied to dinner and across the complete lodge.

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Japanese Yukata Nikko

We became our robes, placed on the socks and slippers and donned our vest for dinner and felt like a Samari going to royal court docket. They even provide silk pouches to carry your cell telephones and room keys whereas utilizing the facilities.

Whereas having fun with a really lengthy and indulgent meal, the workers remodeled our sitting space right into a tatami room placing down mats and the biggest most feathery duvets we have ever used.

It was the good factor to see our room remodeled from fashionable stylish to conventional feng shui. I do not assume I’ve ever slept so properly overseas.

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16. Ryuzu Waterfall

Nikko Japan Ryuzu Waterfall

That is one other in style waterfall that features much more attraction throughout the fall colors. You need not hike to them, there’s a restaurant and memento store proper on the viewing platform only a quick stroll from the parking zone.

However it’s price mentioning due to its magnificence.

It is a in style spot for photographers and there are hoards of individuals standing on the platform making an attempt to seize that excellent picture of the dual falls.

17. Senjogahara Marshland

Nikko Japan Senjogahara Marshland

It wasn’t on our schedule however I am glad we made it right here.

Senjogahara Marshland is a good looking spot for mountain climbing that’s virtually completely on a boardwalk.

It’s a couple of 6.5 km stroll that goes previous waterfalls and temples. It takes roughly 2.5 hours as its straightforward terrain.

We did not have time to hike all of it, however what we did see was gorgeous. It is significantly lovely throughout the fall colors and we had the prospect to seize the essence of why this hike is so in style.

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18. Tobu World Sq.

Tobu World Square Nikko Japan

It is a quirky spot in downtown Kinugawa. Tobu World Sq. is a miniature theme park that’s price a go to.

With buildings just like the Petronis Towers, Eiffel Tower and The Vatican, you will take a tour all over the world trying on the most fascinating structure discovered on earth.

Every constructing is a reproduction of well-known landmarks and buildings on a scale of 1:25.

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Tobu World Square Sphynx nikko

There are greater than 100 buildings from the Pyramids of Giza to the Empire State Constructing.

We obtained a kick out of strolling across the completely different sections and had been fascinated with the element that went into the constructions. In the event you take some photographs on the proper angle, you could possibly really fake that you’re in Greece or Japan.

I hope they replace it quickly because the final exhibit to open was Tokyo’s Skytree Tower. There are such a lot of buildings that I would like to be included from the Center East, Hong Kong and Shanghai.

So deliver it on!

Nikko Japan Things to do

Nikko is a particular place to go to in Japan. Despite the fact that the crowds had been massive, we noticed few vacationers.

I bear in mind working into a girl from America who stopped our information to ask why so many locals go to the place. She questioned the place all of the vacationers had been?

That’s one thing that we discovered particular about it.

There’s one thing satisfying about going to a spot the place it appears like a neighborhood secret.

There’s something satisfying understanding that you’re one of many few foreigners among the many native vacationers. Even when these vacationers are typically within the hundreds.

Our journey to Nikko is dropped at you by Tobu

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