Travel Information

Pilgrimage Maps & Directions

If you would like to visit any of the Saigoku Kannon pilgrimage temples, depending on your own personal requirements, you may choose from the options listed below. What option you select will depend on your familiarity with the Japanese language and the degree of travel independence that best suits you when adventuring to places off the beaten track. Unlike the majority of Japanese resources that I have translated which are often woefully inadequate and incorrect, I have created itineraries and bilingual maps that are practical, detailed, thorough, and easy to use.

Japanese Guidebooks:

All of the temples carry Japanese language guidebooks, which you can purchase on your first visit. However, they are not comprehensively accurate and I have noticed that some of the entries are out of date, especially concerning public transport. Also, their coverage of the temples is limited due to the necessarily small entries of each temple. As for their maps… well, say no more! Japanese schematic road maps are terribly unreliable as I’m sure you will know if you have tried to travel by them without misadventure.

Temple by Temple Guides:

These guides have been created by myself, based on current knowledge (at least valid in the past year). You can purchase a thorough guide for each temple, which includes:
- detailed English map of the temple grounds;
- detailed bilingual map of the area;
- detailed bilingual map of how to get to the temple by car from Osaka or Kyoto;
- details of the public transport options from Osaka or Kyoto;
- printer friendly version of all the information about the temple contained in this website.

Cost of Temple Guide: Donation to the Pilgrimage Fund; guide sent by email (no postage fee) or CD (plus postage fee)

Personalised Travel Itineraries:

Based on my extensive experience of the pilgrimage, I can make up an itinerary to suit your personal needs, whether you want to add on some of the pilgrimage temples to your tour to Japan, or you may want to complete the whole pilgrimage. My itinerary service includes:
- detailed maps as described above in the “Temple by Temple Guides”;
- suggested timetables of itineraries;
- timetables, costs and detailed directions for public transport from any location;
- recommendations for accommodation and restaurants;
- booking service for certain accommodation and restaurants;
- recommendations and notes for other attractions in the area;
- printer friendly version of all the information about the temples and places to visit.

Cost of Travel Itinerary Service: US$50 per day; itinerary sent by email (no postage fee) or CD (plus postage fee)

Personally Guided Tours:

I am an officially authorised pilgrim guide (sendatsu) and if you would like me to accompany you on your pilgrimage, I may be available for small groups (between two and six people). My service as a guide includes:
- acting as your personal driver to the temples;
- acting as your guide to the religious significance, history, art & architecture, spiritual & folk culture, poetry & literature, and all aspects of the temples and pilgrimage;
- acting as your spiritual guide to the prayers, rituals and ceremonies of the pilgrimage as a spiritual journey;
- acting as your language interpreter for the duration of your trip;
- booking all your land transport, accommodation and meals.

Cost of Guided Tours varies according to the number of days and number of people; please contact me directly for a quote.

Pilgrimage by Proxy:

In olden times mendicant monks and nuns would travel throughout Japan collecting alms, temple donations and prayers to be offered at the pilgrimage temples. These itinerant monks and nuns would then undertake the pilgrimage on behalf of the people who were not able to go themselves. As an ordained nun and an authorised sendatsu (pilgrim guide) I am able to offer you the same service; that is, to undertake the pilgrimage on your behalf and to offer your prayers at each of these sacred places. Your "Pilgrimage by Proxy" includes:
- offering your personal prayers and petitions at each of the temples;
- lighting candles and incense for you at each temple;
- undertaking the traditional rituals and ceremonies of the pilgrimage;
- offering the appropriate donations at each of the temples;
- collecting the sacred seals and inscriptions from each of the temples in a beautiful brocade-covered pilgrimage book (nokyocho) that will be a sacred momento for you to keep;
- postage of your pilgrimage book and other momentos collected along the way as required.

Cost of Pilgrimage by Proxy: US$420

Purchase Details

To purchase any of these guides and services, contact Cate detailing where you would like visit. Click here for payment options.