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Yogawa Road and Tokakuji Temple


Yogawa Road

Nakasendo Road was often blocked by a flooding of the Kiso River nearby. Yogawa Road was built as an alternative pass connecting Midono and Nojiri.
This trail takes you along mountain villages and hillsides, connecting historical monuments such as Enku Buddha in Tokakuji Temple, stone Buddha statues in Amidado, and giant cedar trees (8.2 m and 6.7m in height) at the Hakusan Shrine. It is a wonderful hiking course where you can enjoy the tranquility of stone beside the road covered in moss and leaves in the silence surrounding the rise and fall of the road.
* Caution: This hiking route starting from Nagiso Station and ending at Nojiri Station takes 5 hours. Please plan your trip with the sunset time in mind. (There are very few eateries along this mountain road, so please plan your trip accordingly.)

[Click here for the guide map (PDF)]
Please refer to the History Road and Shinanoji Nature Trail Guide Map (Nagiso Station - Midono - Nojiri Station).

Yogawa Road Attractions

Nijusan’yato Tower (about 45 min on foot from Nagiso Station)

It is a folk religion in Japan. People pray to the moon on the 23rd night from the new moon for good harvest.
It is also called "Otachimachi (Stand and Wait)" as people wait standing for the late moonrise.
This tower was built in 1854.

Nijusan’yato Tower

Autumn moon at Koten’an and Yogawa River, one of the 8 Scenic Spots of Kiso (about 1 hr 30 min on foot from Nijusan’yato)

Autumn moon at Koten’an and Yogawa River, one of the 8 Scenic Spots of Kiso

The view of the harvest moon from here is large and splendid, coupled with the topography of the area.
There used to be a Koten’an (monk’s house) in the early Edo period.
Renowned Haiku Poet Ryokan's monument is built here.

Giant cedar trees in Hakusan Shrine (10 min on foot from Koten’an)

There are two large Japanese cedar trees at 8.2 m and 6.7 m.
Hakusan Shrine Festivals (Spring Festival: May 5 and Fall Festival: October 18) host a drive away-the-evil dance performance by people in female lion costumes. This dance was passed down from the people of Hakusan, Ishikawa about 190 years ago. The lion heads are made from hinoki cypress and are over two feet in size.

Giant cedar trees in Hakusan Shrine

Amidado (40 min on foot by the town road from Hakusan Shrine)


It holds many stone memorial monuments including Koshin monument, Junrei Sanpai monument (pilgrimage memorial monument), and Nago monument. The oldest monument is “Namu-amida-butsu Buddha,” built in 1692.

Stone Signpost (30 min on foot from Amida Hall)

It is a stone Buddha statue built in 1761 and is inscribed with “Right: the road to mountains, Left: the road to Nojiri).”

Stone Signpost

Tokakuji Temple

The old Soto Zen Buddhism temple has a splendid bell tower gate.
You can view three pairs of Enku Buddha statues including Idaten statue at Enkudo.

 Tokakuji Temple in spring
Statues of Tenjin, Idaten, and Benzaiten Jugo Doshi