Mt Koya’s Okunoin is the site of the mausoleum of Kobo Daishi (also known as Kukai), the founder of Shingon Buddhism and one of the most revered people in the religious history of Japan. Okunoin is one of the most sacred places in Japan and a popular pilgrimage spot.

Since Kukai’s death in the 9th Century, tens of thousands of others have been interred in Okunoin’s cemetery and the path through the cedar forest to his mausoleum is full of fascinating tombstones and statues.

Okunoin is a mystical, spiritual place to visit at any time, even at night, although the paths are not very well lit and as the sun goes down at dusk, it assumes a particularly magical atmosphere.