After I had to cancel my Arctic Circle Trail hike, I looked for a relaxed destination to unwind. After some consideration, I settled on Japan and a familiar destination, the Wakayama prefecture and the Kumano Kodo trail. I had enjoyed both Japan and the area very much in 2019, so I figured it would delight me this time as well. Overall plan is to just enjoy the Wakayama prefecture. If I feel well enough, I can maybe hike parts, if I don’t I can take alternative transport.
Table of Contents
Day 1: Shirahama
- Arrive with an early flight (08h45) from Amsterdam (originally from Brussels)
- Spend the night at the Marriott in Shirahama, a coastal resort 2 hours south of Osaka.
Day 2: Tanabe
- Eat at Kanteki, my first ever real omakase experience.
- Spend the night in Tanabe’s Miyoshiya-Ryokan.
Day 3: First day on the Kumano Kodo
First day of my Kumano Kodo hike, from Takijiri to Tsugizakura (a total of 17 kilometers). Idea is to see every single day how I feel. If I feel like it, I can do some hiking, if I don’t I can get a bus or alternative transportation.
After taking the bus from Tanabe to the trailhead at Takijiri-oji, start on the first stage, from Takijiri-oji to Tsugizakura-oji.
Food bought from the store the night before.
Rest of first stage. The Tanabe Tourism office stressed that I should arrive at the ryokan before 17h00 (because of darkness on the trail).
Dinner in the ryokan Minshuku Nonaka Sanso.
Sleep at ryokan Minshuku Nonaka Sanso (20 minutes hike from the trail downhill).
Day 4: Second day on the Kumano Kodo
The second day of my Kumano Kodo hike, from Tsugizakura to Yunomine via Kumano Hongu Taisha (a total of 24 kilometers).
Breakfast at the ryokan Minshuku Nonaka Sanso
After a 15minute hike uphill back to the trail, start the second stage from Tsugizakura-oji to Kumano Hongu Taisha and on to Yunomine.
Minshuku Nonaka Sanso lunch.
Continuation of the second stage from Tsugizakura-oji to Kumano Hongu Taisha.
Visit the amazing shrine in Hongu and the Oyunohara.
Get my Dual Pilgrim certificate.
After arriving at the Yoshinoya Ryokan, visit the super relaxed onsen.
Dinner at Yoshinoya Ryokan.
Pay a visit to the legend Tsuboyu Bath (World Heritage).
Sleep in Yoshinoya Ryokan.
Day 5: Third day on the Kumano Kodo
- Yunomine to Kumano Hongu to Totsukawa Onsen, visit the onsen.
Day 6: Fourth day on the Kumano Kodo
- Totsukawa Onsen to Miura-guchi.
Day 7: Fifth day on the Kumano Kodo
- Miura-guchi to Omata.
Day 8: Sixth day on the Kumano Kodo
- Omata to Koyasan.
- Night tour on the cemetery.
- Fire ceremony.
- Sleep in Eko-In.
Day 9: Relax some more
- Relax some more, maybe visit Nara.
- Sleep at the Intercontinental Hotel in Osaka.
Day 10: Heading back home
Breakfast bento box in town.
10h25 flight back from Osaka to Amsterdam.