Day 6: No.21 Tairyu-ji (太龍寺)

Henro route around No.20 Kakurin-ji

From NO.2o Kakurin-ji to No.21 Tairyu-ji, first I go down from the mountain, then climb up again to another mountain where Tairyu-ji is located. During this downhill, I felt something is wrong with my knees.

Old sign post showing shortcut

The Awa Odori doll ? made from bamboo

After finishing going down from No.20 Kakurin-ji in the mountain trail, the Henro route is now easy slope in good condition up to No.21 Tairyu-ji, however the last 1.5 Km is steep again… I now fully understand why “Henro Korogashi – A steep trail letting the pilgrims rolling down” has additional statement such as “一に焼山、二にお鶴、三に太龍” – The first is Shozan (No.12 Shozan-ji), the second is Otsuru (No.20 Kakurin-ji), and the last is Tairyu (No.21 Tairyu-ji).

Finally I’ve reached the main gate of Tairyu-ji

The main gate of No.21 Tairyu-ji

Small straw sandals are offered in the main gate

When I saw this main gate of No.21 Tairyu-ji after struggling with the pain of my knees, all the fatigues went away 🙂 It seems that people offered their small straw sandals in this main gate, to pray for their health.

The precinct of No.21 Tairyu-ji

The main temple of No.21 Tairyu-ji

This reminds me Gobyo-no-hashi (御廟の橋) , the entrance to Kobo-Daishi’s shrine in Mt.Koya

The atmosphere of No.21 is solemn and it has such a stately main temple and Daishi-do that it is called “the western Mt.Koya”. I especially like the atmosphere of the main temple with some lanterns.

Incense burner, resembling lotus flower

Each incense seems to have different purposes 🙂

A beautiful signboard -“Shikoku sacred temple No.21 Tairyu-ji”

At the bottom of the downstairs from the main temple, there’s a ropeway station. Even though I enjoyed so much this quiet and solemn atmosphere of No.21 Tairyu-ji, it’s also bit sad that there’s very few people visiting such a nice place…

There’s almost no one using ropeway…

Inside the ropeway station

At the Nokyo-jyo, the person in charge was putting stamps on many (probably tourists’) stamp books in displeasure…Then he found me and kindly said that individual person should be prioritized. While he’s writing on my Nokyo-cho (stamp book), he asked me if I’m walking. He seems to be impressed when I answered yes, then he proposed me to follow one of the oldest Henro route called Iwaya-michi (いわや道) whose entrance can be found over the ropeway station. He also suggested me to have lunch at the ropeway station, because they offer hot tea as “Osettai”.

They offered me mashroom tea as Osettai, which was really tasty

I knew that the Henro route to the next No.22 Byodo-ji is split, and one of them is Iwaya-michi which was recommended. I originally planned to go for other way (which seems to be longer but easier), but I decided to follow Iwaya-michi… (this was wrong choice for my knees if I looked back now :))

The temple stamp of No.21 Tairyu-ji

Dedicated toKokuzo-Bosatsu (虚空蔵菩薩)
Founded byKobo-Daishi (弘法大師)
DenominationShingon-sect Koya-group (真言宗高野派)
Mantraのうぼう あきゃしゃ きゃらばや おん ありきゃ まりぼり そわか
Noubou Akyasha Kyarabaya On Arikya Maribori Sowaka
Next templeNo.22 Byodo-ji (10.9 Km away)
Previous templeNo.20 Kakurin-ji (6.7 Km away)
No.21 Tairyu-ji