Kansai Walking Trails

Discover the Kumano Kodo Pilgrimage Trail, Mts Yoshino and Koya-san, Kyoto and Nara on this 2-week guided walking itinerary

Kansai Walking Trails

Explore the history of Classical Japan on this mixed walking and sightseeing tour taking in Koyasan, Yoshino, Kyoto, Nara, and the Kumano Pilgrimage Trails.

Outline Itinerary

  1. Day 1: Arrive Osaka

    Arrive Osaka and make your own way to your hotel in the city centre, where you will be met by your guide this evening. The rest of the group will be arriving throughout the day.

  2. Day 2: Train to Mount Koya

    Transfer by train to Mount Koya. On arrival, settle into your temple lodgings and enjoy a lunch of Shojin ryori (vegetarian cuisine).

  3. Day 3: Explore Koyasan

    Spend the morning exploring Koyasan and several of its temple sites in the company of your walking guide. The tour will focus on Okunoin, the mausoleum where Kobo Daishi, the late 8th century Japanese monk and founder of the Shingon Buddhist sect, is enshrined.

  4. Day 4: Kodo Pilgrimage Route; hike to Chikatsuyu (10 miles; 7 hours)

    Today will see us hike a section of the old Nakahechi trail, one of Japan’s National Historic Roads, and part of the famous Kumano Kodo pilgrimage route.

  5. Day 5: Hike to Kumano Hongu and Yunomine Hotspring (6 miles; 5 hours)

    We will pick up the trail again this morning as we continue our journey to Kumano Hongu Grand Shrine, the primary destination point for walkers and pilgrims on the Kumano Kodo.

  6. Day 6: Kumano Nachi (4 miles; 4 hours)

    Today will see us explore the region surrounding Kumano Nachi Taisha, one of the three main shrines of Kumano.

  7. Day 7: Yoshino

    This morning we embark on a tour of the third and final of the Kumano Shrines, Hayatama, located in the coastal city of Shingu, where it overlooks the Kumano River. At the heart of the shrine is the Nagi-no-ki, an 800 year old conifer tree that is considered to be sacred.

  8. Day 8: Yoshino-yama

    Today is free for us to explore Yoshino village and its many temples.

  9. Day 9: Hike to Dorogawa Onsen (11 miles; 5 hours)

    Today we embark on a challenging 11 mile walk to Dorogawa Onsen.

  10. Day 10: Asuka

    After breakfast we depart Dorogawa and drive the short distance to Asuka.

  11. Day 11: Yamanobe-no-Michi Trail (8 miles; 5 hours)

    The Yamanobe-no-Michi is a gentle walking trail that runs from Sakurai to Tenri, in the Nara basin. It forms part of the Shinkaido, sometimes referred to as Japan’s oldest road, and takes us through a region of Japan rich in history.

  12. Day 12: Explore Nara

    In Nara, we continue our tour of classical Japanese history begun in Asuka.

  13. Day 13: Kyoto

    From Nara we travel north by train to Kyoto.

  14. Day 14: Kyoto

    Today we’ll continue our explorations of Kyoto.

  15. Day 15: Departure

    Your tour ends in Kyoto this morning.

Price guide

Please contact the office for more information

Kyoto and Tokyo

Our guide in Kyoto was excellent and we had a great day with her she was very informative and well organised.

Elizabeth and Neil

Sossusvlei, Damaraland and Etosha

Everyone had time for us whether it was in a bank or a restaurant and that is very humbling.

Charles and Wendy