Leaving the Wakasa area of Southern Fukui, travel by train and pre-paid taxi to a rewarding hike in Northern Fukui in the Oku-Echizen region. Hike through natural forest and beautiful mountain scenery to arrive on foot at Eiheiji Temple tucked away deep in the mountains, and the birthplace of Soto Zen Buddhism.
Follow in the footsteps of Dogen Zenji 道元禅師 (1200-1253, Zen Master and founder of Soto Zen Buddhism), as he made his way into this remote region long ago in the 13th century. The impressive temple complex stands in a natural mountainous setting with a history of over 750 years. It is the main training temple of the Soto sect of Zen Buddhism, and around 200 young monks in training (known as Unsui 雲水 ) who devote themselves to uninterrupted Zen practice day and night live here. Visitors have the opportunity to glimpse the authentic way of life of a Zen practitioner.
Stay overnight close to Eiheiji Temple with a premium Japanese Shukubo accommodation featuring delicious, authentic Japanese Shojin Ryori dinner and breakfast served by your hosts at your accommodation, and excellent Japanese baths.
Walking distance: 7.5km / 4.6 miles
Elevation gain: 151m / 495 feet of ascent and 580m / 1,903 feet of descent
Time required: About 3-4 hours
Longer hiking option
For confident hikers, we also offer a longer hiking option as follows:
Walking distance: 12km / 7.4 miles
Elevation gain: 907m / 2,978 feet of ascent and 815m / 2,674 feet of descent
Time required: About 5-6 hours
*To skip today’s hike completely, the morning may also be spent enjoying a leisurely cycle around Lake Mikata near the Sea of Japan, on mostly level, well-maintained countryside back roads with excellent views of the surrounding countryside, lake and mountains.
Optional cycling distance: 15-30km / 9-19 miles on mostly flat, gentle lakeside paths
Accommodation: Premium Japanese Ryokan-Temple Stay
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner