88 Temple Pilgrimage, Takamatsu, Shikoku Island, Japan

After leaving the upper mountain tram station, we walked through the forest to come upon the Torii gate at the entrance to the Yashimaji Temple #84 complex on the 88 Temple Pilgrimage, T

After leaving the upper mountain tram station, we walked through the forest to come upon the Torii gate at the entrance to the Yashimaji Temple #84 complex on the 88 Temple Pilgrimage, Takamatsu, Shikoku Island, Japan

 

The 88 Temple Pilgrimage (八十八ヶ所巡り hachijūhakkasho-meguri) is Japan’s most famous pilgrimage route, a 1,200 kilometer/746 mile loop around the island of Shikoku (where we were docked at Takamatsu).  We had the opportunity to drive to the site of Temple #84 and take the tram up to the top of the mountain to visit the Yashimaji Temple (屋島寺) with its spectacular view over the Takamatsu region.  After an excellent udon soup lunch at a nearby local restaurant Yamadaya Udon – famous for its udon noodles in a seaweed broth — we drove a short distance to visit Temple #85, Yakuriji (八栗寺).

 

A brightly painted pagoda on the path to the main area of Yashimaji Temple #84 on the 88 Temple Pilgrimage, Takamatsu, Shikoku Island, Japan

A brightly painted pagoda on the path to the main area of Yashimaji Temple #84 on the 88 Temple Pilgrimage, Takamatsu, Shikoku Island, Japan

 

“Many of the temples are said to have been founded or restored by the revered monk and scholar Kūkai (空海), better known by his posthumous title Kōbō Daishi (弘法大師).  Among his many achievements, he is said to have created the kana syllabary, brought the tantric teachings of Esoteric Buddhism from China, developed it into the uniquely Japanese Shingon sect, and founded Shingon’s headquarters on Mount Koya near Osaka.  While most modern-day pilgrims (an estimated 100,000 yearly) travel by tour bus, a small minority still set out the old-fashioned way on foot, a journey which takes about six weeks to complete.  Pilgrims, known as o-henro-san (お遍路さん), can be spotted in the temples and roadsides of Shikoku clad in a white jacket emblazoned with the characters Dōgyō Ninin (同行二人), meaning ‘two traveling together’ — the other traveler being the spirit of Kobo Daishi.” – wikitravel.org

 

One of several modern day pilgrims that we met on our walk, known as o-henro-san (お遍路さん), in a white jacket emblazoned with the characters Dōgyō Ninin (同行二人), meani

One of several modern day pilgrims that we met on our walk, known as o-henro-san (お遍路さん), in a white jacket emblazoned with the characters Dōgyō Ninin (同行二人), meaning ‘two traveling together’ — the other traveler being the spirit of Kobo Daishi; at Yashimaji Temple #84 on the 88 Temple Pilgrimage, Takamatsu, Shikoku Island, Japan

 

Pilgrims and other praying visitors ceremonially wash their hands twice and rinse their mouths with water from the dragon-guarded water basin before prayers at Yashimaji Temple #84 on th

Pilgrims and other praying visitors ceremonially wash their hands twice and rinse their mouths with water from the dragon-guarded water basin before prayers at Yashimaji Temple #84 on the 88 Temple Pilgrimage, Takamatsu, Shikoku Island, Japan

 

Part of the temple complex at Yashimaji Temple #84 on the 88 Temple Pilgrimage, Takamatsu, Shikoku Island, Japan

Part of the temple complex at Yashimaji Temple #84 on the 88 Temple Pilgrimage, Takamatsu, Shikoku Island, Japan, set under the peaks of the mountain

 

This Buddha guards the entrance to the vista point overlooking the Takamatsu region beyond Yashimaji Temple #84 on the 88 Temple Pilgrimage, Takamatsu, Shikoku Island, Japan

This Buddha “guards” the entrance to the vista point overlooking the Takamatsu region beyond Yashimaji Temple #84 on the 88 Temple Pilgrimage, Takamatsu, Shikoku Island, Japan

 

The view of Takamatsu and the surrounding region from Yashimaji Temple #84 on the 88 Temple Pilgrimage, Takamatsu, Shikoku Island, Japan

The view of Takamatsu and the surrounding region from Yashimaji Temple #84 on the 88 Temple Pilgrimage, Takamatsu, Shikoku Island, Japan

 

The entry gate ro Yakuriji Temple #85 on the 88 Temple Pilgrimage, Takamatsu, Shikoku Island, Japan

The entry gate to Yakuriji Temple #85 on the 88 Temple Pilgrimage, Takamatsu, Shikoku Island, Japan

 

Multiple Torii gates in front of a small Shinto Shrine at Yakuriji Temple #85 on the 88 Temple Pilgrimage, Takamatsu, Shikoku Island, Japan

Multiple Torii gates in front of a small Shinto Shrine at Yakuriji Temple #85 on the 88 Temple Pilgrimage, Takamatsu, Shikoku Island, Japan

 

Beautiful calligraphy on the Torii gates at Yakuriji Temple #85 on the 88 Temple Pilgrimage, Takamatsu, Shikoku Island, Japan

Beautiful calligraphy on the Torii gates at Yakuriji Temple #85 on the 88 Temple Pilgrimage, Takamatsu, Shikoku Island, Japan

 

The temple complex at Yakuriji Temple #85 on the 88 Temple Pilgrimage, Takamatsu, Shikoku Island, Japan

The temple complex at Yakuriji Temple #85 on the 88 Temple Pilgrimage, Takamatsu, Shikoku Island, Japan

 

Details of the entry gate (as we exited) Yakuriji Temple #85 on the 88 Temple Pilgrimage, Takamatsu, Shikoku Island, Japan

Details of the entry gate (as we exited) Yakuriji Temple #85 on the 88 Temple Pilgrimage, Takamatsu, Shikoku Island, Japan

 

 

One thought on “88 Temple Pilgrimage, Takamatsu, Shikoku Island, Japan

  1. 6 weeks to walk or take the tour bus? hmmmmmm.

    This location is pretty, but not as spectacular as others you have visited (in my humble opinion). Although I may be missing something.

    Like

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