Walking Japan's Kumano Kodō: The Ancient UNESCO Pilgrimage Trail with Kana Hattori

Walking Japan's Kumano Kodō: The Ancient UNESCO Pilgrimage Trail with Kana Hattori


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The Kumano Kodō is a more than 1000-year-old ancient pilgrimage trail in Japan, where people from all walks of life – imperial families, aristocrats, shoguns, samurais, and commoners – walked for spiritual cleansing and virtual rebirth. Today, the ancient trails are a registered UNESCO World Cultural Heritage site. In this seminar led by an expert guide who walked the trail more than 40 times, we will virtually walk the trail and discover the beautiful history, culture, and life in Kumano.

Interested in walking the Nakasendo trail? Check out Kana's additional walking seminar Walking Japan's Historic Nakasendo: From Village to Village.

Walking mountain trails in Japan is one of the best ways to see ""real"" Japan, and together we will discover the unique, beautiful history and culture of Kumano doing this virtual walk. There are five routes for the Kumano Kodō, with the route that the Imperial family once walked (Nakahechi) as the most frequented. We will also take this route. We will visit the ""Kumano Sanzan"", the 3 Grand Shrines of Kumano, walking from village to village. ""Yamabushi"" Shugendo, a Buddhist monk will join us for one section of the walk. We will also virtually experience Japanese traditional accommodation, wearing ""yukata"" cotton kimono for dinner, taking an onsen (hot spring bath), and sleeping on a futon.

Led by an expert guide who walked the trail more than 40 times, Kana Hattori, this interactive seminar will take you to a virtual walk of Kumano Kodō. Designed to inform curiosity as well as future travels, participants will come away with an increased understanding and appreciation of Japanese traditions, history, philosophy, culture, and life found on the Kumano Kodō trail, without the blisters or aches.

Kana is a qualified tea master of Urasenke Tea Ceremony School and is an experienced national-licensed guide. She holds a BA in English from Doshisha University, Kyoto, and another BA in Japanese Classical and Traditional Arts from Kyoto University of Arts and Design. She enjoys playing the shamisen, a 3-stringed traditional music instrument that geisha ladies also play, and also performing Noh, 650-year-old Japanese classical theater. The Zen philosophy—to live in the moment—has always been a core tenet of her life.

This conversation is suitable for all ages.

90 minutes, including a 30 minute Q&A.

Customer Reviews

Based on 14 reviews
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(14)
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Tane Akamatsu (Toronto, CA)
Almost as good as being there

Kana-san is very knowledgeable about this trail and the area in general. Her presentation was well-organized with beautiful photos of the area. She also discussed option to walking the entire trail, a piece of information especially useful for seniors or people who might not be able to walk the whole thing. Very helpful.

A
Anne G. (Ottawa, CA)
Engaging talk!

Guest did not leave comment

L
Lydia Lee (Redmond, US)
Virtual tour for visitors of unseen Japan.

Extremely well organized seminar. Wonderful escape to hikes in remote areas of Japan. Very informative of the potential future visit to these areas, as well as cultural standards to observe.

A
Anonymous (Orinda, US)

Guest did not leave comment

A
Anonymous (Jersey City, US)

This seminar was even better than I'd hoped. History, context, trail options, elevations, special sites, resources, good looks at the footpaths and the accommodative services along the routes. And excellent advice on timing, planning, and Japanese norms. Kana Hattori is a delightful, enthusiastic, and thorough guide. Great seminar!

Customer Reviews

Based on 14 reviews
100%
(14)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
0%
(0)
T
Tane Akamatsu (Toronto, CA)
Almost as good as being there

Kana-san is very knowledgeable about this trail and the area in general. Her presentation was well-organized with beautiful photos of the area. She also discussed option to walking the entire trail, a piece of information especially useful for seniors or people who might not be able to walk the whole thing. Very helpful.

A
Anne G. (Ottawa, CA)
Engaging talk!

Guest did not leave comment

L
Lydia Lee (Redmond, US)
Virtual tour for visitors of unseen Japan.

Extremely well organized seminar. Wonderful escape to hikes in remote areas of Japan. Very informative of the potential future visit to these areas, as well as cultural standards to observe.

A
Anonymous (Orinda, US)

Guest did not leave comment

A
Anonymous (Jersey City, US)

This seminar was even better than I'd hoped. History, context, trail options, elevations, special sites, resources, good looks at the footpaths and the accommodative services along the routes. And excellent advice on timing, planning, and Japanese norms. Kana Hattori is a delightful, enthusiastic, and thorough guide. Great seminar!