Located in Koyasan, Okuoin is the home of a great Buddihst leader
Buddist history roots
Okunoin is the home to the final resting place of the founder of Shingon Buddihism, Kobo Daishi. His mausoleum is located at the end of a long walk way with many tombstones lining each side. It is believed that Kobo Daishi is not dead, but rather in a state of meditation until the Miroku Nyorai, Buddah of the future, comes. Being the founder of a popular religion in the country, this place is considered sacred and is a popular place for pilgrimages.
More than one way to enter
There are two ways to enter the park. One way is over the Ichinohashi Bridge, the first bridge, where guests are encouraged to bow at the enterance to show respect for Kobo Daishi. The other way is the more used way now. This way is from the bus stop at Okunoin-mae and reduces the walk to the mausoleum by half. By this route visitors will pass through the newest addition to the cemetery where there are tombstones from people, companies, and associations. Some of these are entertaining to read.
A place to be seen, not photographed
Once visitors cross the Gobyonohashi Bridge, photography, food and drinks are prohibited. This bridge leads to the innermost part of the temple from the rest of the park. At this bridge, visitors are also encouraged to bow to Kobo Daishi. Past this point, there are several other interesting points of which to make note. On the left of the bridge are markers for unborn children. Just past that on the same side is a rock that is thought to have the power to know good from bad people. It is heavier to bad people than to the good.
Access/ How to go to Okunoin
To get to the main enterance, Ichinohashi Bridge, take a bus from Senjuinbashi intersection at the center of town. To get to the more used enterance, and the closer one to the mausoleum, take the bus from the town center or cablecar station to the Okunoin bus stop. <http://www.japan-guide.com/g2/4900_map_01.gif> <http://www.japan-guide.com/g2/4901_11.jpg>■Hours: Varies by building (Torodo 6:00~17:30; Gokusho Offering Hall 8:30~16:30)■Access: 550 Koyasan, Koya-cho, Ito-gun, Wakayama Prefecture■Tell: 073-656-2002■URL: http://www.koyasan.or.jp/tazuneru/sights/okunoin.html