Yamabushi Training on Mt. Haguro, Yamagata

Explore Mt. Haguro and experience wearing traditional robes

2 days
Yamagata

Highlights

  • Take part in authentic Yamabushi training on Mt. Haguro
  • Dress in "shirosozoku" robes, the traditional robes of the Yamabushi monks
  • Try shojin ryori, the traditional cuisine of the Yamabushi developed on these mountains

Description

Journey deep into the mountains of Yamagata and experience the ancient traditions of the Yamabushi monks in this immersive two-day program. Stay at a Yamabushi mountain lodge at the base of Mt. Haguro and take part in a variety of rituals on Mt. Haguro. During your training, you will dress into the traditional "shirozoku" robes of the Yamabushi and be instructed directly by the monks.

Details

Day One:
Meet your guides at Tsuruoka Station and visit the Foodever visitors center. Here we will see a short lecture about the Three Holy Mountains of Dewa (the Dewa Sanzan) and learn about the Yamabushi monks who have trained on these mountains for centuries. We will then transfer to Miyatabo, a traditional Yamabushi lodge that has hosted and trained Yamabushi for over 150 years. Here you can explore the surrounding town of Togue and see the many shrines and pilgrim lodges that continue to service the many travelers who come to train on these mountains. We will then return to Miyatabo and enjoy a shojin ryori dinner course. This is the traditional cuisine of the Yamabushi that has been developed here on the Dewa Sanzan mountains by the monks who isolated themselves from outside society for long periods during their training.
Meals: Dinner
Accommodation: Miyatabo, a major yamabushi pilgrim lodge on Mt. Haguro with over 150 years of history.

Day Two:
Wake up early in the morning for a shojin ryori breakfast. We will then dress into the "shirosozoku" robes of the Yamabushi before taking part in a special fire ritual in the shrine of Miyatabo by Yamabushi priests. After receiving the blessings of the Yamabushi, we will head into the ancient cedar forest of Mt. Haguro and ascend up the mountain. Along the way we will see manshrines and sites for Yamabushi training. This includes the stunningly beautiful five- storied pagoda of Mt. Haguro which rests in a forest of towering trees and is registered as a national treasure of Japan. Climbing further up the mountain we will stop and rest at a teahouse with expansive views of the Shonai Plains and learn more about why these mountains became such a major site for mountain worship here in Japan. Reaching the peak of Mt. Haguro, we will visit the sprawling complex of the Dewa Sanzan Shrine and make offerings to the gods of that watch over the Shonai Region. After visiting the shrines at the top of the mountain we will then make our way back down and return to Miyatabo where we will dress back into our clothes and have lunch at one of the family run restaurants near the lodge. We will then make our way back to the station or airport where we will drop you off in time for your departure back to Tokyo.

Important information

Included in price

  • All transportation within Shonai
  • All rituals costs
  • Lodging at a Yamabushi lodge
  • Cost of "shirosozoku" robes
  • All meals except for lunch
  • Yamabushi guides during the ritual

Not included

  • Transportation to/from starting/ending points of the tour
  • Personal travel insurance
  • Personal costs incurred during the tour (souvenirs, etc.)
  • Any unscheduled travel
  • Lunch on the first or second day

The minimum number of guests needed for this tour is 2 persons. 

Know before you book

  • Cancellation: 2 days prior to the day of your trip – 40 %,
    1 day prior – 50 %,
    On the day – 100 %,
    No-show – 100 %
  • Waterfall training is not available from November until late April due to snow.
  • This contents of this tour may changed or cancelled in the case of dangerous weather.
  • The dates of this tour are flexible. Please let us know if you need us to change the dates of our tours for your needs.

What you need to bring

  • Swimwear or clothes that you can wear under the robes during the waterfall training. (The white robes become semi-transparent when soaked)
    ● Shoes suitable for walking on dirt trails.
    ● A change of clothes for after the waterfall training.

Meeting point

Tsuruoks Station or Shonai Airport

View Directions

Organised by The Hidden Japan

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