Kochi

Murotozaki

Journeys through Japanese legends

Murotozaki

Murotozaki is a peninsula in Kochi where rough waves hit strange rock formations. Some 1,200 years ago, 19-year old Kōbō Daishi (Kukai) chose this location for his ascetic practices and is where he attained spiritual enlightenment at the end of a long penance. This areas is dotted with power spots associated with Kukai, including seaside caves such as Mirokurodo Cave and the Shinmeikutsu Cave where the supernatural power of Kukai can be felt, and a location called the "Seven Wonders of Kukai” that remains steeped in mysticism.

The Mikurodo Cave where Kukai achieved enlightenment

This cave, produced by the erosive action of seawater, is said to be where the Grand Master Who Propagated Buddhist Teachings practiced asceticisms in his youth and attained spiritual enlightenment. At that time, as the only scenery visible from inside the cave was the sky (ku) and the sea (kai), he combined the two to form his name, Kukai. The sound of waves resonating inside the case, which Kukai undoubtedly heard too, has been designated as one of the “100 Soundscapes of Japan.”
* Because of the danger of falling rocks, the cave cannot be entered and can only be looked at from the outside.

The large ako trees of Cape Muroto

Muroto city, where the dynamic interactions of geology, topography and landscape are on display, is certified as the Muroto UNESCO World Geopark. The Cape Muroto area with its “Wild Walking Trail” running along the coastline is one particular spot where nature observation is a lot of fun. Further, the subtropical ako trees, which snake countless aerial roots around rocks as if embracing them, are sure to impress. Kukai may well have selected Cape Muroto for his ascetic practices because he felt the energy given off by such nature.

Red breams of Muroto

Muroto boasts the largest catches of red bream in West Japan. One dish not to be missed is the famous Muroto Kinme Don, which consists of teriyaki broiled red bream and seasonal fish sashimi.

Kochi Castle overlooking the castle town

Construction of Kochi Castle in Kochi City was started by Yamanouchi Kazutoyo, the first Lord of the province of Tosa, in 1601, and lasted 10 years. A total of fifteen structures of Kochi Castle, including the donjon, Lord’s Palace, and Ote-mon gate (main gate), have been designated as Important National Cultural Assets.

INFORMATION

Location/Access Murotomisaki-cho, Muroto City, Kochi

About 1 hour 30 minutes by car (rental) from Kochi Airport
Inquiries Muroto City Tourism Association
Tel: 0887-22-0574
http://www.muroto-kankou.com/

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