From Shikoku

A journal of my 1,400km pilgrimage on foot around the 88 temples associated with the Buddhist monk Kūkai (Kōbō Daishi) on the island of Shikoku, Japan. April 30 to June 20, 2016.

Day 38: Kyōmyōji

Unlike Kochi Prefecture, the temples in Ehime are far closer together and today we visited four in quick succession. Luckily the weather remained dry and there was even a smattering of sun! Read more

Day 37: Windswept Imabari

We woke this morning to the smell of freshly baked bread which Shin-San, at Hōjōsuigun Youth Hostel, had made. Along with homemade blueberry jam and yoghurt it was a welcome change from the usual savoury Japanese breakfast you get at most places. Read more

Day 36: An Unexpected Surprise

I woke extra early this morning at 5am since I wanted to get as much walking done as possible before the forecasted rain due late morning. On the way out I met Tom who’d had a similar idea but was going to take some shortcuts by train since he’s running out of time on his tourist visa. Read more

Day 35: Matsuyama

After an uneventful night camping in Jōnofuchi Park I woke early, packed and headed to a nearby combini for a simple breakfast (bread, milk, and a banana). Read more

Day 34: Downhill Stretch

After all the ups and downs of yesterday, I slept like a stone statue last night. Luckily today was a mostly downhill affair with some of the finest weather to date (21°C with a slight breeze). Read more

Day 33: Iwaya-ji

I had a bit of a scary moment last night. Having fallen asleep in my tent around 10pm I was suddenly awoken by a bright light. I checked my phone and momentarily thought I’d overslept before realising it was still night. Read more

Day 32: Uchiko

After a better night’s sleep than I’ve had in a few days I woke shortly after 6am and was heading out of Ōzu by 7. I passed scores of kids on their way to school and saw a group of them sweeping their playground. Only in Japan. Read more

Day 31: Garyu Sanso

Upon leaving Matsu-ya Business Hotel this morning the sky looked as if it had violent intentions so I donned my wet weather gear and began to trudge along the road. Read more

Day 30: The Present Moment

It started raining early this morning and didn’t let up for the rest of the day. I walked a modest 20km, visiting three temples along the way before retiring to another Business Hotel. Read more