Introduction to the Shikoku Pilgrimage
The Shikoku pilgrimage is a clockwise circuit in Shikoku. It is 1,140 kilometers long when it’s completed on foot. The majority of the route is paved for automobiles, but there are still some ancient pilgrimage routes in the mountains that have been designated as historic sites. In general, it takes about 40 days for a walking pilgrim to complete the 1,100 km from the T1, Ryozen-ji in Tokushima Prefecture, to the T88, Okubo-ji in Kagawa Prefecture. If you return to the starting point and want to complete the circle around Shikoku, it is 1,140 kilometers. However, walking for more than 40 days in a row is quite a challenge for travelers in terms of schedule, cost, and physical strength. That is why we recommend you this route.
In this 3-day route, you will notice the rich variety of road and views , which is the charm of the Shikoku pilgrimage.
From the T1, Ryozenji, to t10, Kirihataji, we will pass through the bright countryside on the north bank of the Yoshino River. Local people will greet you warmly as you pass by. Try saying “Hello” to children on their way to school, and you are sure to get a cheerful reply. As you look out over the rich fields, you will be thrilled and soothed by small discoveries such as the seasonal activities of farming, flowers and plants, and the activities of insects along the roadside. Each of the temples along the route has its own history and attractions.
In the mountainous area beyond Fujii-dera, the image of the pilgrims who have walked this path for 1200 years may come to mind as you walk along. For example, the moss-covered Jizo statues and the “Ganbatte(Cheer up!)” pilgrim cards hanging from tree branches. It’s a mountain road with many ups and downs, but you will feel as if someone is encouraging you, and it will warm your heart. This section of the trail is in good condition, and we often meet local trail runners. At the highest point of the trail, you will be greeted by a large cedar tree and a statue of Kobo Daishi.
Even if you are a tourist, you won’t feel like you are away from home when you walk the pilgrimage route. The locals have warm feelings toward pilgrims and are genuinely kind tand welcoming.
Total distance: 60.6km（37.7mi） Level: beginner (The 3rd day is for intermediate)
Overnight in Anrakji or surrounding areas
The Naruto German House
Archaeological Properties Center
Overnight in Kawashima , Kamojima
Shozanji Bus Stop
Kamiyama Onsen-mae Bus Stop
Farm Village Park
Local Information Center
The largest temple accomodation among the Shikoku Sacred Sites, located at the 6th temple, Anraku-ji.
A 130-year-old pilgrimage clothing store near the 10th temple, Kirihata-ji.
A rest stop for pilgrims near the 11th temple, Fujii-dera .
For more detailed directions, we recommend that you check the English version of the map “Shikoku Japan 88 Route Guide (2020)”.
The map will be provided free of charge to the monitor participants.