Nikko provided a perfect day out from Tokyo, but this was more of a sightseeing trip than a serious hike. Even though the weather was dull, there were plenty of magnificent attractions connected by a relatively short walk. It would make a good base for a wider range of walks in the surrounding hills of Nikko National Park; 15 hiking trails are listed in the tourist leaflet, ranging from 70 mins to 6 hours. Somewhere to return to for a walking tour.
- I will remember most the strikingly powerful gateways and figures guarding each temple.
- The best bits for me were seeing the wonderfully detailed carvings.
- I can’t think of any “worst bits”.
- It was funny to be on a bumpy local train after the smooth fast shinkansen.
- I didn’t expect to find a “sacred horse” in a stable overlooked by 3 carved monkeys.
- I was also surprised to arrive at a railway station designed by a character from a Simon and Garfunkel song, Frank Lloyd Wright.
- There are no “words of warning” or scary bits.
Contributed by Andrew Llanwarne< Back to Japan page for links to other stories
|Location||Nikko, north of Tokyo|
|Date walked||July 2003|
|Walk type||Town and City walks|
|Difficulty||Suitable for anyone who enjoys an easy walk|
|Distance||8 km / 5 miles|
|Height climbed||100 m / 330 ft|
|Time taken||6 hrs 0 mins|
|Map used||Map in tourist leaflet in English|
|Walk source info||Tourist leaflet, Lonely Planet guide, and Catriona had been before|
|Getting there||Shinkansen from Tokyo then change at Utsonomiya to local train (90 mins total|
|Places to stay||A wide choice of hotels and guest houses|
|Other features||Lake Chuzenji is a scenic location with a sightseeing boat tour|