Nikkō National Park

Mount Nantai 400
Mount Nantai near Nikkō National Park
Photo by: scion cho, Creative Commons

Japan is a country known for its high technology and fashion. It also known for its well-preserved historical and religious structures built hundreds of years ago. Not only that but this country also has some great natural sights to visit. One town in particular, Nikkō, Japan, is the gateway of the famous Nikkō National Park and awe-inspiring shrines and temples. If you want to see waterfalls, mausoleums, temples, shrines, the old Imperial house, mountains, a lake, and a marshland, a botanical garden, and many more, you should visit the town of Nikkō.

In the central town, you will see the world famous Toshogu Shrine, an elaborately decorated complex that houses several buildings for Shinto and Buddhist followers. This shrine is actually a mausoleum where Tokugawa Ieyasu’s tomb is kept. Ieyasu was the founder of the famous Tokugawa shogunate. Aside from its historical buildings, you will also see a vast expanse of trees because this shrine is situated in an amazing forest.

If you walk farther for about half an hour or if you ride a bus for 10 minutes, you will see another mausoleum. It looks very similar to the Toshogu shrine, though this one is more modest. This is the mausoleum of Ieyasu’s grandson, Iemitsu. The name of the shrine is Taiyunbyo and you can also enjoy looking at a lavishly decorated structure.

There is another structure in the central town of Nikke which is called Rinnoji Temple. This temple is an important part of the history of Nikkō because it was built by the Buddhist monk named Shodo Shonin who first brought Buddhism to the town of Nikkō thousands of years ago. It is very near the Toshogu Shrine, which makes it easy for tourists to visit both.

If you like to see nature, you should visit Okunikko, the National Park in Nikkō, where you can see one of the most famous and amazing waterfalls in Japan. Mount Nantai is also located in this area. At the foot of this mountain, you will see a very large and clear lake. The view is breathtaking, as if you are in paradise.

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