So our hike led us to Yamadera. The name in Japanese is 山寺, mountain temple, and so, unsurprisingly, it's a series of temples on a mountain. According to the sign at the bottom, it was founded in 860 by the Tendai Buddhist Sect. A seminary was set up alongside it, and when it reached it's peak in the Kamakura Era (1185-1382), more than 300 monks and 1500 devotees lived on and around the mountain. Since then, it's gone through ups and downs, and now there are 40 buildings over 115 hectares. The area you can walk over is much smaller than that, but there are some lovely corners to explore, and views to admire.
That's all the interesting information the board had, so it's just photos from here!
Happy Buddhas are the best!
Starting up the mountain
There were a lot of toys around this shrine, so I assume it's for children. My guess is the scary demons are to scare away evil spirits.
View from the top
Lovely lovely mountains.
The shot that's on all the advertising for Yamadera!
I'm glad I'm not the postman who has to collect from here, about 800 steps up!
Lots of money left in cracks in the rock