AS THE SPIRITS MOVE YOU: One of Japan’s great secrets can be found south of Kyoto in Ise-Shima, a region of unspoiled beauty where the country’s Shinto religious traditions are strongest - photography: Erik Johnson - text: Pico Iyer - Travel + Leisure June 2017
“The Buddhist temple of Seiganto-ji overlooks Japan’s tallest waterfall, Nachi-no-Taki”
Nishi-Shinjuku - Tokyo, Japan by inefekt69 Via Flickr: I headed back to Japan for my fourth trip earlier this month with new camera in hand :) I’ll be slowly posting photos from my trip though they won’t be showing at the top of my photostream for very long as I like to keep that for my astrophotography images. I visited Tokyo, Yokohama, Lake Ashi, Odawara, Matsumoto, Narai, Kanazawa, Shirakawa-go, Kyoto, Osaka, Kii Katsuura & Nachi Waterfall.
Day #2, well rested and fed in our lovely Ryokan, brought us to another sanctuary of Kumano Kodo - Nachi Taisha. 133 meters high and 13 meters wide, Nachi-no-Otaki is the tallest waterfall in Japan and can been seen from far out on the Pacific Ocean. Nachi-no-Otaki’s water source is the surrounding broad-leaf evergreen - and in our case dripping wet, envelopped in clouds - primeval forest.
The approach up to Nachi Taisha is via the Daimon-zaka, possibly the most famous of Kumanos pilgramage routes. Daimon-zaka is an impressive cobblestone staircase slope which runs from the base of the valley to the Nachi Taisha sanctuary, a total lenght of about 600 meters and 267 stairs, lined with centuries old Japanese cedars (cryptomeria), camphor tress and bamboo groves. Daimon-zaka means “large gate slope” referring to a gate that once stood nearby.