Hello, this is _hiroyuki.ta. This time, I went on a motorcycle tour from central Tokyo to Nikko Toshogu Shrine. Nikko Toshogu Shrine is a shrine located in Nikko City, Tochigi Prefecture, and its main deity is Tosho Daigongen, the deification of Tokugawa Ieyasu, the first shogun of the Edo Shogunate. It is the headquarters of Toshogu shrines throughout Japan, and is an important historical and cultural spot that is registered as a World Cultural Heritage Site.
Route and time required
This time’s route is to take the Metropolitan Expressway No. 6 Mukojima Line, the Metropolitan Expressway Chuo Loop Line, the Metropolitan Expressway Kawaguchi Line, enter the Tohoku Expressway, take the Nikko Utsunomiya Road, and exit at the Nikko IC. The distance was about 160km and it took about 2 and a half hours including breaks. There were some traffic jams and construction along the way, but it was a relatively smooth ride.
Highlights of Nikko Toshogu Shrine
When you arrive at Nikko Toshogu Shrine, first park your motorcycle at the parking lot. Nikko Toshogu Shrine has a large parking lot, but I was able to park my motorcycle in a corner of it.
After walking for about 10 minutes from the parking lot, you will see the “Omotemon” gate, which is the entrance to Nikko Toshogu Shrine. Next, go through the front gate and the approach continues.
As you walk along the approach, you will see the “Five-storied Pagoda”. The five-storied pagoda has been designated as an important cultural property and is a magnificent structure approximately 36 meters high.
The five-storied pagoda of Nikko Toshogu Shrine was founded by Tadakatsu Sakai in 1818 (Bunka 15th year/late Edo period).
However, the current appearance is not the same as when it was first built, but it was once destroyed by lightning and was rebuilt by Tadayuki Sakai in 1818 (first year of the Bunsei era).
After passing the five-storied pagoda, you will see Yomeimon. Yomeimon has been designated as a national treasure and is decorated with such gorgeous decoration that it is also called the “Sculpture of Nikko”.
Nikko Toshogu Shrine is a wonderful spot where you can feel the history and culture of Japan. When touring by motorcycle, be careful of parking lots and road conditions. There are many other attractions around Nikko Toshogu Shrine, so be sure to check them out.