Okugakemichi: Hongu to Tamaki

The Okugakemichi is a mountain trail that connects Yoshinoyama in the north of the Kii Peninsula with Hongu in the south. This trail is known as an ascetic training trail for followers of Shugendo, also called Yamabushi.

Nowadays many hikers and trail-runners also traverse the countless peaks that this trail follows over a distance of over 100km. If you are not a crazy trail-runner, then it might take you a whole week to walk from one end to the other.

Depending on where you start your journey, the part between Hongu and Tamaki is then either your last day or your first day on this long distance hike.

Followers of Shugendo do not just walk the trail but they also stop at certain places, called nabiki, where they say some prayers.

Sign-posting has become better over the years but most signs are still in Japanese. It takes a whole day to walk from Hongu to Tamaki and it is overall an uphill walk. There are no facilities along the trail, so hikers should be well prepared.

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