Sunday, May 27, 2012


On May 6th, Yukiko's brother brought us to Nikko. Here we went to the Tosho-gu, which is a shrine that was completed in 1617. This area was very pretty, with landscape and buildings that just flowed together. From the water areas that are used for symbolic cleansing, and supposedly providing varying effects depending on the water, like longevity, wisdom, wealth, etc.

To the buildings, entrances and stone lanterns, that work well with the natural surroundings.

Anybody who visits the temples and shrines in Japan can tell you that the Japanese love steep sets of steps for some reason. The elevation of this area ranges from 200 meters to 2,000 meters, and I think you could climb steps the entire 1,800 meters. So if you plan on visiting the temples and shrines of Japan, you certainly need to bring your hiking shoes, and practice on the stair master before coming over.

Another thing to note; The Japanese people of this era were small. So,, for most Americans and Europeans, you'll need to watch your head. Luckily enough, I am not tall by USA standards. Even so, as you can see, I barely fit under some of the passageways. We saw an old set of samurai armor from this period. Unfortunately we were not allowed to take pictures of it, but it would fit a modern day 13 year old well. So, I am sure that at the time, these passageways were plenty tall. 

Once you get to the top of Tosho-gu, you have made it to the tomb of a famous shogun, Tokugawa Ieyasu.

We also visited nearby Futarasan shrine and Rinno-ji, which houses the tomb of Ieyasu's grandson, Iemitsu.

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