APRIL 2022

World Heritage calendar April image: Sacred Sites and Pilgrimage Routes in the Kii Mountain Range (Japan)

Sacred Sites and Pilgrimage Routes in the Kii Mountain Range

Japan

The Kii Mountain Range in Japan is a very special place: home of the gods of Japanese Shinto mythology with forests likened to the Pure Lands of Amida Buddhism. In the unique cultural fusion of two ancient traditions were born three sacred sites: "Kumano Sanzan", "Koyasan", and "Yoshino and Omine", linked by pilgrimage routes to the ancient capital cities of Nara and Kyoto. These sites and routes are inseparable from the breathtaking beauty of the streams, rivers and waterfalls of the Kii Mountain Range. Spanning the three prefectures of Mie, Nara, and Wakayama, the range is enjoyed by millions of nature lovers, hikers and pilgrims annually.