Nagano as we see it
Nagano City is Nagano Prefecture's largest city and the prefectural capital. Nagano is an entrance point
to the Japan Alps area for skiing and hot springs in the winter and hiking and walking in the summer.
We will be staying at the Hotel Metropolitan Nagano
for one night and then the ryokan called Yakimmochiya.
Some things to do in Nagano
Here are a few suggested sites to see / things
to do in Nagano. Feel free to suggest additions. When we are in
Nagano, this will be our first source in deciding what we'd like
to do next.
Interesting that a Buddhist image was enshrined in zenko-ji in 642, then the image was
completely hidden from the people in 654, and since then no one has ever been allowed to see it.
Underneath Zenkoji's main hall is a winding, pitch-black tunnel (okaidan) that represents
the road to enlightenment. On the way through the darkness, you should discover a metal
handle, which is the "key" to salvation. Admission to the tunnel is 500 yen and the experiece
is not for the claustrophobic.
The 'Rokujizō' are statues of the six Bodhisattvas, who gave up Buddhist enlightenment, in order
to provide salvation to others. The Bodhisattvas are said to be able to commune with the six
realms of hell, starvation, beasts, carnage, human beings and divine beings. The Rokujizō are
located to the right of the Daikanjin at zenko-ji. (See image in box at left.)
This page has useful information for
getting to zenkoji.
Togakushi actually has several shrines and sites in the vicinty.