On March 25th and 26th, WAKAYAMA KISHUKAN, the
Tokyo branch office of the Wakayama Tourism Division, invited 12 Japanese media companies (16 people) from for a press tour. The Tanabe City Kumano Tourism Bureau supported them in Tokyo . Tanabe City
The theme of tour was “Relaxing Wakayama Story～My Secret Travel in Sacred Kumano～.
The first day, they visited the Minakata Kumagusu Archives and his residence before heading to Takijiri-oji, “the gateway to the sacred Kumano mountains” where the World Heritage portion of the Kumano Kodo pilgrimages route Nakahechi section begins.
The tour then toured the “Kodo-Aruki-no-Sato Chikatsuyu”, a new facility with convenient bus shuttle service for short walks on the pilgrimage route in the Chikatsuyu area which recently opened. The tour stayed at “Organic Hotel Kiri-no-Sato Takahara”. The next morning, they were surprised to see a wonderful sea of clouds in the valley below. Kiri-no-Sato means “village in the fog”, because of this often seen phenomenon.
On the second day, we visited the Kumano Hongu Heritage Center and we heard an explanation of the Kumano pilgrimage Mandalas. The participants then walked on the Kumano Kodo with a local guide and health therapist from Hosshinmon-oji to Fushiogami-oji, and onto Sangenjaya. A priest at the Kumano Hongu Taisha guided the tour throughout the shrine grounds.
Finally, we reached to Kameya Ryokan, a long-established Japanese-style inn at Kawayu Onsen and ate “Kumano’s medicine Yakuzen cuisine”, which features fresh local ingredients.
The tour was a great success thanks to all of the support of everyone involved.