A Hidden Gem for Shrine Enthusiasts
Kashima Forest, a thick forest surrounding the precinct of the Kashima Shrine, is found at the mouth of the Daishoji River which begins at Mt. Dainichi and flows down to the Japan Sea via Kakusenkei Gorge. It looks like a small island sitting in the lake, but is actually connected to the land. It used to be a sacred place for Buddhism and thus is said to have been left untouched for hundreds of years. Passing through the torii (shrine gateway) and climbing the stone steps, you will enter a primeval forest of evergreen broad-leaved trees. A ten-minute walk will take you to the Kashima Shrine standing quietly. There is also a footpath on the south side of the forest.