Kumano Kodo Pilgrimage Routes, Japan

In July 2004, the Kumano Kodo pilgrimage routes were registered as UNESCO World Heritage as part of the 'Sacred Sites and Pilgrimage Routes in the Kii Mountain Range' property. This website of the Tanabe City Kumano Tourism Bureau, provides a comprehensive account of the history of the pilgrimage routes, along with maps, guides and suggested walks. Kumano has been considered a sacred site associated with nature worship since prehistoric times, but as Shinto and Buddhism mixed, the belief of Kumano as a Buddhist Pure Land became prevalent. The 9th and 10th century was the formative period of the sacred sites that we know today.

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52