Days 7 & 8: Temples 21 to 23

Lots more walking up to temples and down into valleys and then back up again. Thank goodness for leg support socks, a knee sock and a big stick – protecting my legs on the inside trying not to tear a ligament and on the outside – fear of  those pesky snakes – unlike Crocodile Dundee with me who just wears shorts.


Some wildlife:

And some images around the temples:

And some lovely views now we are at the coast:

Days 5 and 6: I think

The signposting is not great and we’ve got seriously lost in the past couple of days. Yesterday we decided to take a more obscure route over a mountain instead of through a city/town and ended up hiking up and up and thinking we had definitely got higher than 140m and eventually came out on a road and ended up walking for miles down the hill only to find we had gone completely wrong. Damage: about US$25 for about 10km ride! Today was the same, we were supposed to start at temple 18 but somehow missed it and had to come back on ourselves then we did it again at temple 19 and somehow manage to bypass it without noticing in the pouring rain. This time we were given a ride back to the temple from the service station. Then off again to temple 20 and looking forward to getting some snacks at Lawson (like a 7-11) and it was closed! However, one again a young man on his moped helped us out – asked us to wait 5 minutes and went and got his car and drove us 5km to the next 7-11 type store. For our final challenge up to temple 20 – a mere 550m climb – I decided to take my chances on the 5.5km wiggly road and let Stephen race up the 3.5km walking track (more like ladder). I won! I cheated as a kind old man stopped and offered me a lift straight up to the temple door! Had a lovely hour lying on a bench, drying out my shoes and socks and listening to BBC podcasts! Here are a few photos:


Days 3 & 4: From Temple 11 – 13

I have to say that had I known what was in front of me, I would never have done these two days! To get from 11 to 12 was about 12.8km BUT required a three massive consecutive climbs with no break in between. From temple 11 was a climb up to 600+m then down to 500m then back up to 800m then down again this time to 400m then back up to 700+m to temple 12 then another descent to our ryokan at what seemed like below sea level! It was supposed to be about 16km all up – but my iPhone recorded 22.3km. 


Not feeling amused! This was a killer!


The next day was not as bad but slow – we had to do one small climb then the rest of the day on the flat but my legs were sore! 

A lovey Japanese man gave us these bags of lollies and crackers – it was like Christmas!

Day 2: Temples 6 through 11

The health app on my iPhone tells me we walked 21.7km today and 18.6km yesterday. Today we only took day packs as we are staying at the same place. It’s low season and not as many accomodation options so we organised to get picked up and dropped off so we can walk from temple to temple. No rain today either! Shikoku is famous for odon noodles and we had an excellent bowl  at temple 7. It’s super quiet unlike the Camino which was buzzing with pilgrims; however, we are enjoying the peace and quiet. Most of today’s walk was through small villages on the side of the very quiet and narrow lanes. Here are some photos:

Day 1: Our Shikoku Walk

After a minor hiccup (we got on the wrong bus at the airport) we made it in the rain to Tokashima and stayed in a small business hotel – nothing special. This morning we jumped on another bus to start at temple number 1 and then walked about 18km all the way to temple 6.  There are very few people walking and most travel by bus or car around the temples. It’s also the rainy season so we didn’t encounter many people at all. Here are a few pictures from today.

Off On Another Long Walk

We are getting ready for our walk this summer. This time we are off to explore the  Shikoku Henro Trail which is Japan’s famous 88 temple pilgrimage, a 1200km loop around the island of Shikoku. Just getting this blog ready so I can post as we go.