The island of Shikoku is the smallest of the main four in Japan. Around its perimeter runs the 88 temple pilgrimage started by Kobo Daishi in the 8th century. He’s also credited with bringing script from China and esoteric buddhism. His body now lies in a temple on Mount Koya and legend has it he is just meditating and will awaken when the time is right. I’m planning to walk the northern half of the Shikoku loop and visit Koya-san on the way out of Osaka. The Japanese have a great respect for those who travel on foot possibly because they were often motivated by religion in some form and many were priests. I’m just interested in grokking the culture and a natural part of that will be visiting places of religious importance.
“Do not just walk in the footsteps of the men of old. Seek what they sought” – Kobo Daishi