NIPPON Kichi - 日本吉

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天狗の庭 Tengu-no-niwa Tengu Garden

Jp En

Tengu Garden features scenery in which the legend of the long-nosed Tengu goblin might well come true. It is a plain that small Tengu might have flown around to mountainous areas. One can imagine a Tengu playing in this area.

In autumn, the red foliage becomes very beautiful. One can enjoy the scenery by driving along the Bandai Azuma Skyline road. There are yellow leaves of Betula ermanii and red leaves of maple and azalea beside the former road. The leaves are not only beautiful in autumn, but also in summer, when they are an extreme green.

The mysterious feeling of Tengu flying in the skies around here can be felt in one's bones in this 'special' area.
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竹生島 Chikubu-shima Chikubu Island

Jp En

Chikubu Island is in the northern part of Lake Biwa, in Nagahama City, Shiga Prefecture. The total area of the island is 0.14m2 and its highest part is 197m. It is designated a Great Scenic and Historical Place of the Nation.

Chikubu Island is located 2km south of Tsuzurao Cape. The whole island is covered with conifers and is said to be one of the 8 great views of Lake Biwa. The island also appears in Japanese Noh dance-drama, and is referred to in Japanese lute music, storytelling, and modern Japanese music.

Since olden times, the island has been worshipped and a god is said to live there. At the south end of the island, there are Chikubu Island Shrine, enshrining one of the three major Benten gods, and Hogoji Temple, the 30th spot of Saigoku 33. The lake around the island is deep, while the western side is the deepest part of Lake Biwa. Between the island and Tsuzurao Cape in the north, remains have been found on the lake bottom. Much earthenware is being pulled up from 70 meters down.

Chikubu Island is a traditional island with a long history and a myth.
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機具岩 Hatago-iwa Hatago Rocks

Jp En

Noutou-Kongou is the coastal region near Togi, in Hakui district, Ishikawa prefecture. There are many places to see along this extraordinary coast. Hatago rocks is one of them.

Also known as 'Noutou's Two Rocks', the two rocks are connected by a rope and are worshiped. A long time ago, legend has it that the goddess Nunaki-iri-Himeno-Mikoto was trying to develop the cloth industry in Noutou. One day, she was attacked by a bandit. She threw the cloth she was carrying into the sea, whereupon it changed into the two rocks. This legend is the origin of the story of these rocks.

When the setting sun sinks, the silhouette of the two rocks floats in the dark red of the sea. The view is almost surreal: it is as if a goddess appears.
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西表島・浦内川 Iriomotejima Urautikawa Iriomote Island・Urauchi River

Jp En

The Urauchikawa (Urauchi River) flows for 39 kilometers through the island of Iriomotejima and is the largest and longest river in Okinawa.

Iriomotejima is called the 'Galapagos islands of the east' because of its diverse subtropical flora and fauna, especially around the Urauchi River. The wide variety of plant life includes mangrove trees, an array of tree ferns such as the 'hikagehego' (Cyathea spinulosa) and 'shida' (Pteridophyta), as well as flowers such as the 'sagari bana' (Sagari flower) and the rare 'seishika'.

The island is ideal for birdwatching, and also features the Maridhu waterfall and the Kanbire waterfall, both of which are included among Japan's top 100 waterfalls.

Other places of interest include the Unan Rock, symbol of a popular belief that a cow was traded long ago for possession of the island and its rich fishing grounds. Another famous spot is the Inunoko-sanbiki (Three Puppies), which is named for a myth about three little puppies that were devoured by a monster.

Iriomote Island’s landscape makes it hard to believe that it is in Japan, due to the rich, exuberant lushness and the range of animal life here.
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鬼の舌震 Oninoshitaburui Oni-No-Shitaburi

Jp En

Oni-no-shitaburi is a national monument of scenic beauty located in the Okuizomo prefectural nature park in  Shimane Prefecture.

The name Oni-no-shitaburi derives from the story, Izumo Fudoki. Wani (a shark) loved the goddess of the land Ai, and started to come out of the sea of Japan to see her night after night, so the goddess banked up the river. Despite her spurns, Wani’s feelings  grew stronger, and became known as ‘Wani-no-shitaburu’. The name Oni-no-shitaburi is said to be have evolved from a corruption  in pronunciation.

In the middle reaches of the Omaki River, a tributary of the HiiRiver, there is a 2km-wide valley associated with  the Yamatano-orochi legend. Did the goddess create the rocks? In the valley are  gigantic and bizarre rocks eroded and formed by the rapid stream; you feel the grandeur of nature here.

Alng the limpid river, you can see rare birds, such as the Crested Kingfisher and the Brown Dipper, and fishes, such as the Haya and Ugui, that are only found in these parts.

The giant salamander, a Japanese special national treasure, can be found here, too. You can also see various plants found only in this valley.
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"Nippon-kichi" leads you to places, people and things that reveal a certain Japanese aesthetic.

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