Hiking the Kumano Kodo – Chikatsuyu to Yunomine Onsen

5/15 – A beautiful, sunny day for a hike.  We stopped in at the Cultural Center at the beginning of today’s walk, and discovered an old, familiar friend – the Camino shell!  Turns out that Tanabe and Santiago de Compostela are sister cities; each hosting a pilgrimage.

Today we saw some beautiful mountains:image

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Serene wooded paths:

And little shrines along the paths:

Beautiful trees and flowers:image

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We saw the cultivation of tea:

We walked through an area known for folk wood carvings, which were displayed in front of many houses.

We knew we were near Yunomine Onsen when we could smell the sulphur in the air. A natural hot spring runs through the town, and we are staying three nights at small guesthouses right on the spring, with deep hot-water baths. A new experience! image

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