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Nestled in a high valley, secluded amongst lush forest and surrounded by 8 mountain peaks, Koya San was founded as a monastic complex in 816. Since then it has grown into a vibrant settlement with over 100 temples and a religious studies university, the whole area a place of sacred pilgrimage. Whilst not a place that lives in the past, it is a place to catch a glimpse of age-old traditions, beliefs and philosophies, as well as being able to enjoy some outstanding natural beauty. Don’t miss the chance to wander Okunoin, a vast, stupa-filled cemetery, through which you’ll reach the breathtaking Hall of Lanterns, where 10,000 oil lamps are permanently alight.
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