Okunoin, Three Times Visited

Japan, Koya Guide (B): Okunoin, Three Times Visited

Okunoin (奥の院) is Japan's largest cemetery, with about 200,000 tombstones along a 2-kilometer stretch. At the end of this stretch is the mausoleum of Kobo Daishi, the father of Shingon Buddhism.

My trips (abroad or anywhere for that matter) usually do not involve a visit to a cemetery (except, maybe, when the trip is to one's hometown during All Souls Day). Sure, I read about Okunoin—it didn't look too interesting—but because it is one of Koyasan's two most sacred sites (the other one is Garan), I added it to my itinerary. To be visited if time permits.

It never crossed my mind to visit a cemetery at night. By myself, at that. But why in the world did I go? Because the guesthouse staff suggested so. And I never questioned why.

In the gloaming, I put on my jacket and started my journey to the unknown cemetery. I entered Okunoin at the newer approach, which is just a few minutes' walk from the guesthouse, near the last bus stop. This approach would cut the distance to the mausoleum in half. ...... (follow the instructions below for accessing the rest of this article).
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Sights Map

Guide Name: Okunoin, Three Times Visited
Guide Location: Japan » Koya
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Article (B))
Sight(s) featured in this guide: Okunoin   Gobyo no Hashi   Torodo   Mausoleum of Kobo Daishi  
Author: Mustachio Ventures
Read it on author's website: http://mustachioventures.blogspot.com/2017/08/okunoin-koyasan-wakayama.html