Travel to Mount Kurama of Japan
Mount Kurama is a famous mountain located at the northwest part of Kyoto. Within its ranges is a small rural town of the same name, which is located about an hour from the city center of Kyoto. Since it is found at the tops of the mountains, most of the travelers that go to this place are nature lovers. They enjoy hikes and walking trips to the summit or to the temples within the mountains. Also famous in this place is the onsen and ryokan which are both very enjoyable after a long day of hiking.
Reiki Practice of Healing
The Reiki is a form of therapy or healing which is done with the use of the hands. Like a massage, it involves the transfer of energy from the hands to the body through the means of different motions. According to the legends, it is believed that the founder of this form of healing had meditated in the mountains for weeks and has gained the power and energy for healing.
Reiki is a form of palm healing that has existed in both the Japanese and Chinese cultures for centuries. Based on the literature, it is said to have been discovered in the 19th century. It is used to reduce anxiety and pain to the patient. Furthermore, it is used to induce relaxation. According to experts, it is a great way to improve the condition of the muscles and is used to help relieve the symptoms of depression. It is a great treatment for people who are stressed and often tired.
Kurama Japan Mythology
Japan is home to a variety of myths and legends. One of the most famous would be the story of the Tengu or heavenly dog. This is a kind of legendary creature which is believed to be gods or supernatural beings that take the form of dog-like demons. One form that it takes is the nine-tailed fox or the kitsune. Originally, these mythical creatures were believed to be evil but Japanese legends have said that they have become much milder and turned into protectors of the mountains.
These small demons are believed to be found in the different mountains of Japan. One of the greatest daitengu would be the Sojobo of Kurama. Sojobo, according to Japanese mythology is one of the minor deities that live in the mountains of Kurama. It is believed to be the mythical king of the tengu. Sojobo is often portrayed t have very long, white hair. His defining characteristic is his seven-feathered fan which indicates his high position among all tengu of Japan.
This particular deity is believed to have taught a famous warrior named Yoshitsune the art of magic and healing, along with skills in fighting and swordsmanship. Along with this, the mountain has been believed to be the origin of the healing art of Reiki. The founder of the Reiki is believed to have meditated in the mountains for almost a month and has received healing energy from the deities of the mountains.
Travel tips to Kurama
Kurama Japan Weather
Mount Kurama is located in Kyoto which is found on the island of Honshu in Japan. Overall, the weather and climate in Kyoto involves four seasons. The rainy season usually happens between June and July of every year. Then, the weather is quite sunny and humid until about August of every year. In the months of September and October, the typhoon season can be felt all over the region. The winter season can be quite cold but only snows occasionally. Since the elevation of Mount Kurama is quite high, the climate in this region can be often cold making it a great place to enjoy onsen and ryokan.
Kurama Japan Map
It is not too difficult to go to Kurama as there is a train system that can access it from central Kyoto. From the Demachi-Yanagi Station of the Eizan Kurama line, they can get down at the Kurama Station in only 30 minutes. Roughly the price of a train trip is about 420 yen. For those who wish to go to Kurama in a much faster way, they can ride the JR Nara Line. From the Kyoto station, they can take a trip to the Tofukuji Station. At this place, they can transfer to the Keihan Main line and ride to the Demachi-Yanagi Station. The entire trip takes only about 12 minutes and costs about 410 yen.
Hotels in Kurama Japan
Since Kurama is found in the mountains and can be a long way from the city center, a lot of travelers are asking about the hotels and inns where they could stay throughout their vacation. The great thing is that there are a number of hotels and inns within the area. One example would be the Ohara no Sato, which is a Japanese style inn complete with a garden, traditional wooden architecture, spacious Japanese style rooms, and futon mats. This is a great place to experience traditional Japanese living. For those who would prefer a more modernized hotel with very spacious rooms, the Palace Side Hotel, Ishicho, and the Kyoto Brighton Hotel would be an excellent place to stay.
What makes these hotels better is that they have onsens within their facilities. Some examples would be the Ryokan Nenrinbo and the Kurama Onsen. These places are traveler favorites because of the great service and awesome facilities. The downside to this is that a night’s stay is usually quite expensive ranging between 10,000 yen to 20,000 yen per night. But all the expense is worth the price - the staff are friendly, booking is easy, and guests are always welcome.
Local Delicacies to Eat in Kurama
Other than the wonderful experience of nature, Kyoto also has a number of food choices and special dishes to offer. One of this is the Yudofu, which is a tofu which is cooked and boiled in delicious hot broth. This particular dish is a favorite during the cold autumn and winter season. This is usually served with soy sauce and topped with chopped spring onion. It is made up of soft tofu that melts in the mouth.
For those who wish to eat delicious desserts, the Kyo-wagashi is a great food item to try. This is a traditional Japanese sweet which is served simultaneously with tea. Similar to a mochi, it is filled with sweet azuki bean paste. The soft jelly-like exterior is incomparable.
Weight-watchers and vegetarians also enjoy a trip to Kurama because of their special Japanese Buddhist Vegetarian cuisine are known as the Shojin Ryori. These are the types of dishes served to monks which why it is also known as devotion cuisine. It is a wide collection of greens and leafy vegetables. There are even some restaurants that serve this buffet style.
Things to do in Kurama
Kurama Cherry Blossom
Every year, a lot of people enjoy spending Hanami at the mountains of Kurama. The temples and shrines around the area is a favorite place to view the cherry blossoms. People enjoy a walk of leisure viewing the beautiful flowers and end the day bathing at the outdoor onsens of hotels and inns where the views of the flowers make the experience even more relaxing. Usually, Sakura blooms in Kyoto around the last week of March until the first two weeks of April. On average, the peak of the bloom usually happens at the first few days of April making it the best time to travel to this region.
Kurama-dera Mountain Temple
This place is located on the shoulder of Mount Kurama and is the ultimate place for a nature trip. This is believed to be the main attraction for any trip to Mount Kurama. It is a Buddhist temple which is located on the mountainside. It gives an incredible view of century-old trees, the mountains, and nature in general.
There are different ways to reach the Kurama-dera temple. Tourists can take the cable car up to half-way up the mountain. Then, from here people can climb up and enjoy the beauty of the main buildings of the temple – which are hundreds of years old. There are hiking trails to the temple which even continues on to the Kibune located in the neighboring valley.
This particular temple is considered as one of the National Treasures of Japan. Although it is a Buddhist Temple, it is of a different kind entirely. It is believed to be founded by a disciple of a man called Jianzhen, a Chinese, Buddhist monk. According to history books, this man had a dream that he would be building a special temple found in the mountains of Kurama. What is most special about this place is that it is filled with mysteries that most travelers are always too intrigued not to miss.
There is a legend that tells a story about a goddess that traveled from Osaka to the mountains of Kibune. The site where the temple is built is believed to be the end point of the goddess’ journey. It is also believed that the site where the shrine was built is where the boat used by the goddess is buried. This is why the main deity worshiped in this temple is the god of water and rain.
Located in a neighboring valley, the kibune-jinja is an ancient shrine which is over 1,600 years old. What is impressive about this is that the Kifune-Jinja shrine pre-dates the foundation of Kyoto by a few hundred years. It was built as a means to worship the god of water and rain where farmers go to give gifts and pray for a bountiful harvest through an abundance of rain and irrigation. There is a total of three temples in the complex. The upper shrine is believed to be the oldest, the middle shrine is the largest and the most visited, and the other shrine is surrounded by tall, ancient cedar trees.
This is a great destination for a nature trip. The tall trees keep the entire area cool during the summer seasons. There is also a freshwater stream nearby that visitors enjoy. Tourists also enjoy the fortune telling in this temple, fortune is written on paper slips called omikuji which reveal their messages when they are dipped in water.
This is a small Shinto shrine which is located in the quiet mountain of Kurama. It has a very rustic structure which makes it very attractive to tourists. It is located very near to the Kurama-Dera Temple. Going to this temple usually involves mile-long walks which are why it is best to wear walking shoes and sneakers when visiting the area. It could be reached in the same way as the Kurama-dera is reached, only with a few miles of additional hiking.
This particular shrine is the patron shrine of what is known as the Kurama Fire festival which is held annually in October. During this festival, watch fires are lighted up simultaneously in front of houses and parade all night long through the city. This parade will reach the Kurama-dera temple and the Yuki shrine. From this place, they will carry down the Mikoshi until they are completely paraded throughout the town.
Kurama Japan Onsen and Kurama Japan Ryokan
The Mountains of Japan is home to a number of onsens or natural hot springs. The Kurama Onsen is the favorite travel spot of all tourists in the area. Just imagine an outdoor hot tub surrounded by cherry blossoms in the springtime in addition to the majestic views of the mountainside. The ultimate vacation experience anyone would wish to have. After a dip in the hot tub, a short tranquil walk around the village is also great. People enjoy the outdoor tub the most during a light drizzle of snow because it gives a completely magical experience.
Going to a ryokan is also an experience filled with leisure. A Japanese style inn with futons and a warm matted floor – this is a great place to relax and just enjoy.