course guide


Hongu-michi Kawabata-kaido Route

Hongu-michi Kawabata-kaido Route Drive Course

Starting in Hanano Iwaya Shrine in Kumano, you head inland along the road to Hongu, then down along the Kumano River which you finally cross to reach Shingu. This course has many famous spots and historical places to visit on the way. You can also see some of the many faces of Kumano, views of the Sea of Kumano, the mountains, traditional villages and the Kumano river on this drive.

Maruyama Senmaida
Maruyama Senmaida

Built in the heart of the mountains, terraced rice paddies march up the slope, one after
the other to form this splendid view covering 7.2 hectares. There is a viewpoint with parking
looking down on this window to old Japan.

The hall for Yojiyakushi
The hall for Yojiyakushi

A big willow tree was cut down here to use in the construction of the Sanjūsangen-dō
Temple in Kyoto. It is said that a dryad lived in the tree and later a memorial to her was
built for the Dryad of the Willow.

Hisetsu Falls
Hisetsu Falls

For the people here, this waterfall is a place to find peace and solace. There used to
be a tea house here for raftsmen who floated timber from up stream to the market down
in Shingu. There were a lot of people passing by in the old days.

The three-sail riverboat
The three-sail riverboat

A thousand years ago, the imperial family and other royalty would travel between Hongu
and Shingu in riverboats on their pilgrimages to the Three Grand Shrine of Kumano or
Kumano Sanzan. This three-sailed riverboat was a thriving business about 100 years ago.

Distance Approx. 60Km from Hanano Iwaya Shrine to Kiho Town
Driving time from 2hrs. and 30mins. to 3hrs.
Level ★★

download the map