trip
Plan your active adventure.View relaxed booking conditions.
4
Introductory to Moderate

Traveller Rating

 

Activities
  • 7 day self-guided hike
Accommodation
  • 9 nights in minshuku
Meals
  • 8 Dinners
  • 6 Lunches
  • 9 Breakfasts

10 Days$2220USD

Hit the trails with confidence

Flexible Cancellations
Stress free booking, learn more about our flexible terms

COVID-19 safety measures
Read our Covid-19 travel policy and what we're doing to keep you safe

Remote adventures
means social distancing comes naturally

Small groups only
Guided group sizes are strictly limited to maximum 16 people, average of 8-10


 
 
Trip Code: JKP

Trip highlights


  • Walk from coast to coast on Japan's World Heritage Kumano Kodo pilgrimage
  • Stay at traditional ryokan inns & enjoy home-cooked meals
  • Become a Dual Pilgrim by walking both the Kumano Kodo and the Camino de Santiago
  • Tailor hiking distances to suit you and your group
  • Hike in the UNESCO listed Kii Mountains to Hongu shrine

This self-guided hike takes you coast to coast through the scenic vistas of the sacred, UNESCO World Heritage listed Kumano Mountains of the Kii Peninsula. Despite being easily accessible from both Osaka and Kyoto, the region is one of Japan’s most remote, forested mountain landscapes and home to the centuries old pilgrimage trails leading to the three Grand Shrines of Kumano. Hike the peaceful cobble lined paths weaving through forested valleys, along mountain ridges and rural villages. We take care of all the arrangements for you, including charming traditional inns, all meals, luggage transfers, detailed route maps with daily itinerary and local English speaking helpline so you can simply relax and enjoy the spectacular hike in the footsteps of Emperors.


The trip begins in Kii-Tanabe, the gateway to the Kumano Kodo pilgrimage trails. For over 1000 years all levels of society, including retired emperors and aristocrats, have made the difficult pilgrimage to Kumano. Drop off your luggage at the Kumano Travel Support Center next to the Kii-Tanabe Station and enjoy some time at leisure to explore this quaint country town. At 14:30 you will have an orientation at the Information Center. This meet and greet orientation session covers the details of the trip and any last minute questions can be answered. At 15:00 a local guide will escort you to Tokei-Jinja where you'll participate in a special purification ceremony performed before pilgrimage treks on the ancient trail of Kumano. This is an excellent introduction to the pilgrimage experience. Dinner this evening is on your own account at a local restaurant. There are many traditional Japanese style izakaya pubs near the station area. Overnight at a guest house, such as Hanaiori Guest House, or similar.

Meals:  Nil

Breakfast this morning is most likely at your accommodation (please note this may change depending on your accommodation as some guesthouses do not offer breakfasts.) Your luggage will be shuttled from Tanabe to Takijiri. At 08:00am you have time to pick up a lunch box near the station and from here your hike begins. The walk from Tanabe Station to Takijiri-Oji is around 22km (7-9hrs). This route begins in the city center, passes through the orchard filled agricultural hills and then over the Shiomi-toge pass. As you walk you will experience the transition from the urban centre to the rugged mountains. Overnight this evening is at Kodo-no-Mori, a lodging next to Takijiri-oji, the spiritual entrance to the sacred Kumano mountains and popular trailhead for multi-day treks on the Kumano Kodo. The confluence of the Tonda (Iwata) and Ishiburi Rivers play an important role in the historical and spiritual aspects of the Takijiri-oji shrine. “Takijiri” means “base of the waterfall”. "Oji" are the additional shrines of the Kumano Grand Shrines that line the Kumano Kodo - to protect and guide pilgrims. Dinner will be at your accommodation. Hiking distance: ~22km, 7-9hrs

Meals:  B,L,D

Breakfast this morning is at your accommodation and please remember to pick up at lunch box at your accommodation. Please leave your luggage at your accommodation as it will be shuttled from Takijiri to Nonaka. From here you will join the Nakahechi trail of the Kumano Kodo and walk the Kumano Kodo Takijiri-oji to Takijiri trail. The Kumano Kodo Kan Pilgrimage Centre is located at Takijiri-oji, and this is where the passage into the sacred mountains begins. The hike begins at the Takijiri-oji shrine beside the Tonda River and follows a mountain trail passing through Takahara and Chikatsuyu villages to Tsugizakura-oji. The route has some steep inclines and downhill slopes on uneven surfaces. Your overnight accommodation will be in the Chikatsuyu village (Nonaka area). Dinner tonight is at your accommodation. Hiking distance: ~17km, 7-8hrs

Meals:  B,L,D

Breakfast this morning is served at your accommodation. Your luggage will be shuttled from Nonaka area to your accommodation in Yunomine Onsen therefore please leave your luggage at the front desk. You'll need to pick up a lunch box at your accommodation before beginning your Kumano Kodo Nonaka to Kumano Hongu Taisha walk. Lunch is a bento box which you can stop and enjoy along the way. It is a memorable stop and visit at the Kumano Hongu Taisha. A stone staircase leads to the sacred grounds of the Kumano Hongu Taisha, which is situated on a ridge surrounded by giant cedar and cypress trees. From here you will take the public bus from Hongu to Yunomine Onsen (the cost is 300yen per person). The bus departs at Hongu Taisha-mae at 4:45pm and arrives at Yunomine Onsen at 5:09pm. The bus leaves from in front of Kumano Hongu Heritage Center. Overnight is in the picturesque little onsen village of Yunomine Onsen. Minshuku Yunosato is a good option, dinner is at your accommodation. Hiking distance: ~21km, 7-9hrs

Meals:  B,L,D

The morning begins with breakfast at your accommodation. Today's walk is a short but relatively steep trail over Mt. Dainichi that links Kumano Hongu Taisha with Yunomine Onsen. The Hanakake Jizo is on the ridge, and on the eastern slope is Tsukimigaoka-jinja. This shrine is located in a grove of old-growth trees and was historically associated with the Shugendo sect in the area. Someone who has walked both UNESCO World Heritage pilgrimage routes, the Kumano Kodo and the Way of St.James (Camino de Santiago) can register to be a "dual prilgim". You will have an opportunity for Dual Pilgrim registration today at the Kumano Hongu Heritage Center. Next it's time to visit Oyunohara. The entrance to the sacred site of Oyunohara is formally marked by the largest Torii shrine gate in the world (33.9m tall and 42m wide). It signifies the division of the secular and the spiritual worlds. Oyunohara, an island in the Kumano River, is where the Hongu Shrine originally stood. Lunch is at a restaurant in Hongu. From here you walk Dainichi-Goe back to Yunomine Onsen or you can take a bus from Hongu to Yunomine Onsen, where you will find overnight accommodation. Yunomine hot spring has over 1000 years of history, as traditionally pilgrims performed hot water purification rituals in these hot waters. Yunomine is a charming group of inns tucked into a little valley in the heart of these sacred mountains. Dinner is at your accommodation. Hiking distance: ~2km, 1-2hrs

Meals:  B,D

Today begins with breakfast at your accommodation, and please be sure to pick up a box lunch at your accommodation before you leave. Your luggage will be shuttled from Yunomine to Kawayu Onsen. Today's walk is on Kohechi: Hatenashi-Toge Pass. There is a bus from Yunomine to the Yakio Bus Stop (550 yen per person). The bus departs at 8:54am from Shimoyukawa and arrives at Yakio at 9:17am. From here you begin the Kumano Kodo, Hatenashi-Toge Pass walk (approx. 10km, 5-7hrs). This is a steep climb up and over the Hatenashi-toge pass. There are many scenic lookout spots and it is lined with small Buddhist statues. Lunch today is a picnic lunch along the way and you will finish at Hotel Subaru. There is a small restaurant here and day use hot spring facilities, perfect for the end of the walk. The Bus from Hotel Subaru to Kawayu Onsen departs at 4:20pm (950 yen per person) and arrives at Kawayu Onsen at 5:19pm. Kawayu Onsen is a thermal wonder where hot spring water bubbles to the surface of the river. Overnight is in Kawayu Onsen and dinner is at your accommodation. Minshuku Tateishi may be a good option as they offer a shuttle service to Koguchi. Hiking distance: ~10km, 5-7hrs

Meals:  B,L,D

Breakfast this morning is at your accommodation and please pick up lunch at your accommodation. Your luggage will be shuttled from Kawayu to Koguchi. Today you walk the Kumano Kodo - Kowaze to Kawayu Onsen (Kogumotori-Goe). There are no restaurants along the trail so you will need to remember to bring a lunch. The trail has some ups and downs, in addition to some nice ridge-walking sections. Dinner this evening is at your accommodation. Hiking distance: ~15km, 6 hrs

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning breakfast is at your accommodation. Your luggage will be shuttled from Koguchi to Nachisan, therefore please leave your luggage at the front desk. Please pick up lunch at reception. Today is one of the toughest sections of the Nakahechi section of the Kumano Kodo. It involves a climb and descent over a pass, and is mainly in the forested mountains. Directly translated, Dogiri-zaka can be translated as "Body Breaking Slope", and this is an appropriate name for the first section which climbs nearly 800 meters in elevation (over approx. 5 kms). On a clear day you will want to stop to enjoy the magnificent coastal views at the Funami-toge pass. Along the way delight in the views of the Nachi-no Otaki falls, the tallest waterfall in Japan (133m high and 13m wide). As you pass the ancient wooden Buddhist Seiganto-ji temple and go through a small gate you will come upon the the brightly colored Kumaon Nachi Taisha, one of the three grand shrines of Kumano. You have time to visit Kumano Nachi Taisha and spend the night in Nachi. Dinner tonight is at your accommodation. Hiking distance: ~14.5km, 7-9 hrs

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning breakfast is at your accommodation. Your luggage will be shuttled from your accommodation in Nachi to your accommodation in Katsuura. Please leave your luggage at reception. Today's walk is from Nachisan to Katsurra, via Daimonzaka. This completes the walk to the coast. Lunch today is at a restaurant in Katsuura. Enjoy the hot springs! Overnight accommodation is in Katsuura (there are about a dozen places to choose from). Dinner is at your accommodation. Hiking distance: ~9km, 3-4 hrs

Meals:  B,D

After breakfast at your accommodation you bid farewell to this great area and your hosts. You may choose to visit Katsuura, and the fish market near the tourist pier (note: the market is not open everyday). In Katsuura the trip concludes.

Meals:  B


Inclusions

  • 9 breakfasts, 5 lunches and 8 dinners
  • Traditional local inns on a twin share basis
  • Luggage transfer between accommodation
  • Official Kumano Kodo guidebook
  • Local English language support number
  • Orientation session with Q&A on arrival
  • Detailed route maps & daily itinerary

  • International airfare, Visa and Travel insurance (compulsory)
  • Meals and beverages not indicated in the program
  • Items of a personal nature such as laundry, phone calls, alcohol etc
  • Train and bus fares

Departure dates

Departs daily year round

Notes

Note:
Surcharges apply during the late April into May Golden Week

Dates or itinerary don't fit?

Create a custom made itinerary for the perfect adventure. Choose when you travel, what you see and where you go.

Total Priceper person from

$2220USD

Options & Supplements*
  • Kumano Kodo Coast to Coast Single SupplementUSD$630
  • Kumano Kodo Coast to Coast Single Traveller SurchargeUSD$630
*Prices listed are per person

Essential Information

Ready to book? Make sure you download and read the detailed Kumano Kodo Coast to Coast Self-Guided Hike trip notes which contains all the essential information you need to know before booking. Once you’ve booked, we will supply you with a Pre-Departure document which contains a detailed gear list and other important information to help you prepare for your adventure ahead.


Trip reviews


Why travel with us

Award Winning Adventures

Enhancing your journey with authentic experiences, genuine cultural exchange and real exploration are the focal points on all of our adventures. In 2019, we were crowned by our peers as the best in adventure travel at The Travel Awards in Sydney.

Thoughtful Travel

Responsible travel is at the heart of every program we offer as a fundamental and long held philosophy. When you book one of our 100% carbon offset adventures you’re supporting true sustainability in the protection of local communities, natural environments and wildlife.

Ultimate Value

 When you book one of our adventures, you will receive quality services at the best prices with plenty of inclusions. There are no hidden costs, single travellers don’t pay more and you’ll enjoy many ‘extra touches’ that ensure your holiday is excellent value for money.

Positive Impact Travel

By joining this trip you are directly supporting positive impact projects in line with the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

We’ve offset the carbon emitted by this trip by purchasing credits that support important projects that address the UN’s seventeen SDGs, like reducing poverty, affordable and clean energy, reducing hunger, clean water and climate action.

Proceeds from this adventure purchase carbon credits through the world’s largest and most awarded carbon project developer, South Pole, which are invested into projects accelerating the transition to renewable energy sources in developing countries.

Supported projects are based on internationally recognised standards and are third-party audited. They entail a series of positive impacts on the ground, which benefit local communities and ecosystems, that are aligned with the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

Similar trips

Join Newsletter
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/ADS.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Adventures South"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Adventure South</div>
Adventure South NZ is unrivalled in their geographic coverage, originality and overall quality of adventures holidays in New Zealand. Choose from walking, cycling, winter or multi-activity holidays, on either the North or South Island.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/AWH.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Australian Walking Holidays"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Australian Walking Holidays</div>
Australian Walking Holidays specialises in small group guided walking adventures. Since 1982 we have been guiding small groups of travellers on Australia's finest walks across our tropical, coastal or red centre landscapes.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/GCT.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Great Canadian Trails"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Great Canadian Trails</div>
Great Canadian Trails specialises in active holidays in Canada. With both guided and supported self-guided options available, our unique itineraries draw upon some of Canada's most inspiring parks, trails and landscapes from coast to coast.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/HUM.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Humac Challenge"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Huma Charity Challenge</div>
Huma enables those with adventurous spirits to challenge themselves and make a difference for a cause close to their heart. Travel, fundraise and meet life-long friends on one of Huma's meaningful and unique challenges around the world.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/WB.jpg?v2' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Walkers’ Britain"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Walkers' Britain</div>
Walkers' Britain (formerly Sherpa Expeditions) have specialised in walking and cycling trips in the United Kingdom and Europe since 1973. Explore iconic trails and destinations on a self guided or small group active holiday with Walkers' Britain.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/WB.jpg?v2' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Walkers’ Britain"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Walkers' Britain</div>
Walkers' Britain (formerly Sherpa Expeditions) have specialised in walking and cycling trips in the United Kingdom and Europe since 1973. Explore iconic trails and destinations on a self guided or small group active holiday with Walkers' Britain.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/TAS.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Tasmania Expeditions"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Tasmanian Expeditions</div>
Tasmanian Expeditions is the most experienced operator of treks and adventure travel holidays in Tasmania. We own and operate the most comprehensive range of adventure holidays available across Tasmania's varied landscapes.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/UTX-new.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Utracks"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>UTracks</div>
UTracks are the active European holiday specialists. Whether you prefer cycling or walking, 2-star or 4-star, small groups or self guided, land, river or sea – UTracks can help you to explore Europe exactly the way you want.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/WYA.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="World Youth Adventures"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>World Youth Adventures</div>
World Youth Adventures is our specialist division dedicated to organising tailor made overseas school group adventures. Specialists in Service Learning projects, choose from more destinations than any other school group provider.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/YOM.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Yomads"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Yomads</div>
Yomads offers adventures for the 20s and 30s on six continents. Designed as a way to bring young and likeminded travellers together, Yomads caters to those interested in lightly structured and active trips that allow freedom to roam and explore.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/ACT.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Australian Cycle Tours"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Australian Cycle Tours</div>
Australian Cycle Tours specialises in high quality self guided and guided cycling experiences in a selection of the most beautiful regions in Australia.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/WEX.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="World Expeditions"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>World Expeditions</div>
The pioneers of original, worldwide adventure travel holidays since 1975
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/TJX.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Trail Journeys"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Trail Journeys</div>
Self-guided cycling experts on New Zealand's Otago Rail Trail and more
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/BMAC.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Blue Mountains Adventure Company"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Blue Mountains Adventure Company</div>
The original Blue Mountains canyoning, hiking, climbing and abseiling experts
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/GWNZ.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Great Walks of New Zealand"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Great Walks of New Zealand</div>
Explore New Zealand's most spectacular wilderness regions with the self-guided hiking experts
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/NAA.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="North America Active"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>North America Active</div>
USA Canada hiking & cycling tour specialists, choose from self-guided or guided trips