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Hiking Saitama’s Ancient Road,

“Mitsumine Shrine Omotesando,”

at the End of Summer


Hello. My name is Rafuma and I will be teaching you about the sightseeing areas in Saitama. Today,

I will be introducing the path leading up to Chichibu’s Mitsumine Shrine, that has a long history.




Established by Yamato Takeru (legendary prince said to exist circa 72-114), the Mitsumine Shrine

  has been standing 1,100 m above sea level for over 1,900 years.


The Mitsumine Shrine Omotesando is a sacred road build over 150 years ago during the Edo period.

Since then it has been the path used by the Mitsumine Shrine worshipers.

The entrance to Omotesando is near the Owa Bus Stop for the Seibu Tourist Bus.

It takes about 35 minutes from the Seibu-Chichibu Station Bus Stop to the Owa Bus Stop. (560 yen)

It takes about 78 minutes from the Seibu-Ikebukuro Station in Tokyo to the Seibu-Chichibu Station on the Limited Express Red Arrow Train .


In front of the station, there is the bus timetable and electric signboard that indicates the upcoming buses,

which make it easy to confirm the departure times.

There are also pamphlets in English with the bus information.




 Once you arrive at Owa, you can already see the torii (Shinto shrine archway).




 When you pass under the torii, the guardian wolf statues greet you.

Wolves are known to be the familiars of gods at the Mitsumine Shrine.

The owners of a nearby souvenir shop told me how the guardian wolves at the Mitsumine Shrine used to be much more beautiful. 




 The path to the shine is right across the Toryumon bridge. From here it is about 3.7 km to the shrine and takes about two and a half hours.

Cross over the bridge with various places being serviced, and continue walking.

It is important to be careful when passing through places such as marshes and deep ravines




 After about an hour of walking you will see the Seijyo no Taki (waterfalls of purity) and a rest stop where you can take a break.

In the old days this place seems to have been used to cleanse the body before visiting the Mitsumine Shrine. 




While you take in the best of Chichibu’s natural beauty, you can walk next to an avenue of cedars.






  If you continue walking another 30 minutes after the waterfall, you will come across the remains

of Yakushido that is now being used as a rest stop.




Continue walking and you will start to see people’s houses.




After climbing for two and a half hours, I arrived at Mitsumine Shrine.

You can see all of Chichibu from the Yohaiden (worshiping alter) at the entrance of the shrine.




Mitsumine Shrine’s Haiden (front shrine) was built 200 years ago and each design is breathtakingly beautiful.




After visiting the shrine, I went to eat lunch. Inside the Mitsumine Shrine is an inn and onsen establishment called Kounkaku ,

where I ate a delicious bento. You can also stay over at the inn.




  After warming up in the onsen, ride the Seibu Sightseeing Bus back to the Seibu-Chichibu Station.

It takes about 75 minutes from the Mitsumine Shrine Bus Stop to the Seibu-Chichibu Station Bus Stop. (930 yen)

If you use the Seibu Railroad Red Arrow Train, you can enjoy a day trip out of Tokyo so please come and visit Mitsumine Shrine.




You can also see other hiking courses in Chichibu near the bus stop. (Japanese only)


*Depending on the weather (such as snow), Omotesando might be closed.

* This information is valid from October 2017.



 298-1, Mitsumine, Chichibu-shi, Saitama, 369-1902, Japan



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