Jan 19, 2018
When it comes to sightseeing, one of my favourite places to visit is Mt. Yoshino. A popular cherry blossom viewing spot since ancient times, it has scenic mountain trails that stretch for about 8 kilometers! During the Edo Period (1603-1868), the mountain was famous as a stage for Kabuki plays. It is also a sacred place for Shugendo, a Japanese religion where followers undergo harsh training in the mountains for enlightenment.
Noted for its historical and architectural value, Mt. Yoshino was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2004. If you have time to spare, I would recommend visiting the World Heritage buildings in the area — including Yoshino Mikumari Shrine, Kinpu Shrine, Kinpusenji Temple and Yoshimizu Shrine. Do also drop by the historical site where the renowned haiku poet Matsuo Basho once strolled.
Mt. Yoshino offers spectacular views of nature during all four seasons. You can catch 30,000 cherry trees turning the mountain pink in spring, hydrangea in summer, colorful leaves in autumn, and snowy landscapes in winter. I’m not surprised that the beautiful scenery has appeared in many poems for over 1,000 years! To get here, you can hop aboard Kintetsu Express to Yoshino Station. The mountain trailhead is just in front of the station.
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