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Daisekirinzan in Kunigami District, Okinawa Prefecture

This video, "Oishi Forest Mountain|A walk in the sky" (大石林山 空中散歩), was created by "Okinawaworld."
Daisekirinzan is a mountain in Okinawa's Kunigami District, about a 3-minute drive from Cape Hedo (辺戸岬, hedo-misaki), the northernmost point of the main island of Okinawa.
As seen from 0:15 in the video, the island has a karst landscape created by limestone from 250 million years ago.
The many strange rock formations and beautiful scenery is reminiscent of Guilin in China, known for its depictions in ink paintings.

Nearby is Ashimui (安須杜), which has been a sacred place since ancient times.
From Cape Hedo, the mountains seem steep and forbidding, but once you actually enter the mountains, you'll find a peaceful paradise of subtropical flora and fauna.

Most of Daisekirinzan is designated as a specially protected area of Yanbaru National Park.
You can enjoy the magnificent nature of Yanbaru while making your way through the two main trekking courses.

The History of Daisekirinzan

Image of Daisekirinzan, Okinawa
Photo:Daisekirinzan, Okinawa

Daisekirinzan is a "quasi-national park" in Okinawa, in accordance with the Natural Parks Act.
The park is managed with the aim of protecting the beauty of nature and contributing to the health, recuperation, and knowledge of Japanese citizens.

On September 15, 2016, along with the official designation of Yanbaru National Park, a part of the area previously designated as Okinawa Kaigan Quasi-National Park was transferred to Yanbaru National Park.

Daisekirinzan is a must-visit sightseeing area in Okinawa, even winning the "Tripadvisor Excellence Award 2018" on TripAdvisor for the fifth consecutive year.

The Two Main Trekking Courses of Daisekirinzan

Image of a Banyan Tree in Oishi Forest Mountain, Okinawa
Photo:Banyan Tree in Oishi Forest Mountain, Okinawa

① Strange Rock / Churaumi Panorama Course
As seen from 0:36 in the video, this is a course where you can experience the tropical karst landscape at the northernmost tip of Okinawa.
It takes about 60 minutes to complete the 1,200m course.
You can see the strange rocks and massive boulders from 0:45 in the video.

In addition to strange rocks and boulders, there are also many places of worship, such as the "Stone Forest Wall," which is said to be full of spiritual power.
There is also an observation deck where you can enjoy a panoramic view, and during good weather conditions, you can even see Yoron Island (与論島, yoron-to) and Okinoerabu Island (沖永良部島, okinoerabu-jima) in Kagoshima Prefecture (鹿児島県, kagoshima-ken).
There is also a barrier-free course, which is 600 meters long and takes about 20 minutes to complete
It's designed for the elderly and people in wheelchairs to enjoy.
As seen from 2:00 in the video, there's also Eboshi-iwa Rock (鳥帽子岩) towering into the sky, as well as the mysterious Nabe-ike Pond (鍋池).

② Yanbaru Forest Course
The Yanbaru Forest Course can be seen from 2:09 in the video.
Even in the midst of Daisekirinzan, this is an area where the subtropical trees grow especially densely.
It takes about 30 minutes to traverse the 1,000m-long course, and you can enjoy the magnificent natural scenery, including the huge banyan tree seen from 2:32 in the video.

Summary of Daisekirinzan

Image of the Phantom Flower Mucuna Macrocarpa, Okinawa, Japan
Photo:The Phantom Flower Mucuna Macrocarpa, Okinawa

In addition to the two famous trekking courses, there are many other sightseeing spots in Daisekirinzan.
The Okinawa Stone Culture Museum (沖縄石の文化博物館, okinawa-ishi no bunka hakubutsukan) is a geological and ethnic museum centered around Okinawan stones.
Gajumaru Road (ガジュマルロード), also known as the "Path of the Wind" (風の道, kaze no michi) is a road winding along gorgeous scenery.

If you're lucky, you might even get the chance to see the rare "Mucuna Macrocarpa," which grows naturally in the mountains of Yanbaru.
Even Okinawans rarely come across this "phantom flower."

In recent years, Daisekirinzan has been attracting attention as the largest spiritual area in Okinawa.
Consider adding Daisekirinzan to your itinerary when you visit Okinawa!

【Official Homepage】Yanbaru National Park Daisekirinzan
https://www.sekirinzan.com/en/

【Tripadvisor】Daisekirinzan
https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g1025649-d1373544-Reviews-Daisekirinzan-Kunigami_son_Kunigami_gun_Okinawa_Prefecture.html

Written By
Sep. 4, 2021
Japan
鈴木 正孝(Masataka Suzuki)
Daisekirinzan - A Place Where You Can Enjoy the Magnificent Nature of Okinawa, Unchanging Since Ancient Times! Leave Behind the Hustle and Bustle of the City on the Famous Trekking Courses!
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