It was inevitable I guess, with all my late nights and early starts… I slept in for my trip to Kobe, himeji and mount shosha. Not by much, but, given the fact it was a 5 hr round trip just to get to Himeji, the lost time meant I had to drop one of the three locations.
As Id never been to any of them and had no idea what to expect, I dropped Kobe from the plan just because it “sounded” less photogenic. I still saw it, just briefly as the train sped through on its way to Himeji.
Himeji is a lovely town! Far enough away from kyoto and osaka to feel a bit more “traditional” but still tourist friendly, easy to get around and well worth the visit.
I’ll definitely return to Himeji as there was so much I didn’t get to see.
I decided to go to mount shosha first, based on the logic that if I went as far as I needed to, every step back brought me closer to my final destination…
Mount Shosha is a Buddhist temple complex high up on the mountains to the south of Himeji. Access is by bus, a long walk, or “the mount shosha ropeway” which is (according to Wikipedia) an aerial tramway…
It’s another half hour on the bus from Himeji station to the ropeway, but once there the trip to the top is less than 10 minutes. “Top” isn’t quite accurate… The ropeway drops you quite a bit further up the mountain but the walk to the main temple complex of Diakodo, Maniden Temple and the rest of the Engyoji temple complex is another one hour walk away… Edit
All the travelling was worth it as the temple complex, the mountain paths and the views make mount shosha a brilliant day out.
I recognised a few locations from the film “the last samurai” which was shot here and managed to grab quite a lot of photos. 🙂
After a few hours on the mountain, I returned to the ropeway and back down to Himeji
My initial plan was to visit Himeji jo, the world heritage site but as soon as I saw it I realised that a few hours wouldn’t do it justice as it is massive! Another trip to Himeji required for that alone I think…
I decided instead to have a wander around the shops before boarding the train for the long trip back to Osaka.
I have Saturday free for shopping and to chill out so my Friday night was also “free” as I didn’t have to worry about an early start.
A few beers in hommachi ended up being lots more, with jaeger shots, in Shinsaibashi. I impressed myself by walking, slightly the worse for wear, all the way back from americamura to my apartment at 4am! It would appear I really do know osaka well now!
Finally, after my rant yesterday about selfies, I decided to knock the chip off my shoulder, and stop being so judgemental.
So, here’s my first selfie of the trip, taken outside the Niomon Gate, Mount Shosha…