Mount Shosha (書写山, Shoshazan) is the site of Engyoji (円教寺, Engyōji), an atmospheric temple complex with a history of over 1000 years. Located at the edge of Himeji City, the mountain can be accessed in only 30 minutes from the city center by bus and ropeway.
Engyoji's temple buildings are spread over a spacious, densely forested area on the mountain top. From the ropeway station it takes a 10-15 minute walk uphill to reach the Niomon Gate and another 10-15 minutes to reach the Maniden, a beautiful wooden temple hall, constructed on pillars on a steep slope. Alternatively, a minibus operates between the upper ropeway station and the Maniden every 20 minutes (500 yen for a round trip).
Another five minute walk along forest trails brings you to the three massive wooden temple halls, known as Mitsunodo: the Daikodo (main hall), Jikido (lodging and dining hall, now exhibiting temple treasures) and Jogyodo (gymnasium). More buildings and an observation point with views over Himeji are located even further along the trails in the Okunoin area.
Due to the beautiful scenery and absence of modern infrastructure on its temple grounds, Mount Shosha is frequently used as a filming location for historical movies and TV dramas. Besides mostly domestic productions, the Hollywood movie "The Last Samurai" was partially shot on the mountain, incorporating scenes taken around and inside the halls of Mitsunodo.
Getting there and around
Take bus number 8 from Himeji Station (North Exit) or Himeji Castle to the terminal stop "Mount Shosha Ropeway" (書写山ロープウェイ, 30 minutes, 280 yen one way, every 20 minutes). Then, take the ropeway up the mountain (600 yen one way, 1000 yen round trip, every 15 minutes). Alternatively, it is possible to hike up the mountain in about 45-60 minutes.
There exists a convenient combination ticket that includes a round trip by bus from Himeji Station to the ropeway station and the ropeway round trip for 1420 yen. It is available at the ticket counter of the Shinki Bus Terminal in front of Himeji Station.
Hours and Fees
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Links and Resources
Hotels around Himeji
Shironoshita GuesthouseShironoshita Guesthouse offers accommodation in Himeji. Each room is equipped with a shared bathroom. Shironoshita Guesthouse features free WiFi throughout the property. A flat-screen TV is offered. You will find a shared lounge at the property. Himeji Castle is 900 metres from Shironoshita Guesthouse, while Mt. Shosha Ropeway is 6 km from the property. The nearest airport is Kansai International Airport, 66 km from Shironoshita Guesthouse.View on Booking.com
Himeji 588 Guest HouseLocated on a lively traditional shopping arcade, Himeji 588 Guest House features affordable Japanese-style accommodations. Free WiFi is available and guests can watch DVDs on the flat-screen TV in the shared lounge. JR Himeji Train Station is a 10-minute walk away. Guest House Himeji 588 is a 5-minute walk from Himeji Castle and Koko-en Garden. Shoshazan Engyo-ji Temple is a 15-minute drive away. Guests can choose to stay in dormitory-style rooms or private rooms. Private rooms feature tatami (woven-straw) flooring and Japanese futon bedding. Dormitory rooms are fitted with bunk beds. Bathrooms and toilets are shared for all rooms. Toiletries are offered for free and towels are available at an extra charge. Free coffee and tea are offered at 588 Himeji's shared lounge. A coin-launderette and luggage storage are available.View on Booking.com
ホテル カーシュ Cache 男塾ホテルグループSituated in Himeji, ホテル カーシュ Cache 男塾ホテルグループ features 2-star accommodation with private terraces. This 2-star love hotel offers room service, a 24-hour front desk and free WiFi. All rooms include a balcony. The rooms at the love hotel have air conditioning, a flat-screen TV with cable channels, Game console ? Nintendo Wii, and a private bathroom with a bidet, free toiletries and a hairdryer. At ホテル カーシュ Cache 男塾ホテルグループ rooms include bed linen and towels. An American breakfast is available each morning at the accommodation. Himeji Castle is 4.5 km from ホテル カーシュ Cache 男塾ホテルグループ, while Omiya Hachiman Shrine is 34 km from the property. The nearest airport is Kobe Airport, 66 km from the love hotel.View on Booking.com
Daiwa Roynet Hotel HimejiLocated in Himeji, 1.7 km from Himeji Castle, Daiwa Roynet Hotel Himeji provides accommodation with a fitness centre, private parking and a restaurant. Located around 33 km from Omiya Hachiman Shrine, the hotel with free WiFi is also 33 km away from Miki History Museum. Guests can enjoy city views. The hotel will provide guests with air-conditioned rooms with a desk, a kettle, a safety deposit box, a flat-screen TV and a private bathroom with a bidet. At Daiwa Roynet Hotel Himeji every room is equipped with bed linen and towels. A buffet, continental or Asian breakfast is available daily at the property. Speaking English, Japanese and Korean at the 24-hour front desk, staff are always at hand to help. Miki City Horimitsu Art Museum is 33 km from the accommodation, while Miki Municipal Hardware Museum is 33 km away. The nearest airport is Kobe Airport, 67 km from Daiwa Roynet Hotel Himeji.View on Booking.com
Richmond Hotel HimejiFeaturing 3-star accommodation, Richmond Hotel Himeji is situated in Himeji, 3.1 km from Himeji Castle and 33 km from Omiya Hachiman Shrine. Among the facilities of this property are a restaurant, a 24-hour front desk and luggage storage space, along with free WiFi throughout the property. Miki Municipal Hardware Museum is 34 km away and The Ruins of Miki Castle is 34 km from the hotel. All rooms are fitted with air conditioning, a flat-screen TV with satellite channels, a fridge, a kettle, a bidet, free toiletries and a desk. With a private bathroom fitted with a shower and a hairdryer, rooms at the hotel also feature a city view. At Richmond Hotel Himeji the rooms are fitted with bed linen and towels. The accommodation offers a buffet or ? la carte breakfast. Miki History Museum is 33 km from Richmond Hotel Himeji, while Miki City Horimitsu Art Museum is 34 km from the property. The nearest airport is Kobe Airport, 67 km from the hotel.View on Booking.com
Hotel Monterey HimejiFeaturing free WiFi, Hotel Monterey Himeji offers accommodation in Himeji. Guests can enjoy the on-site restaurant. Each room at this hotel is air conditioned and has a flat-screen TV. You will find a kettle in the room. The rooms come with a private bathroom fitted with a bath. Extras include slippers, free toiletries and a hairdryer. You will find a 24-hour front desk at the property. Himeji Castle is 1.2 km from Hotel Monterey Himeji, while Shikama-k? is 6 km from the property. The nearest airport is Kansai International Airport, 67 km from the property.View on Booking.com
Tabist CapsuleHotel APODS Himeji StationSet within 1.8 km of Himeji Castle and 33 km of Omiya Hachiman Shrine, Tabist CapsuleHotel APODS Himeji Station features rooms in Himeji. The property is around 33 km from Miki History Museum, 33 km from Miki City Horimitsu Art Museum and 33 km from Miki Municipal Hardware Museum. The accommodation offers a 24-hour front desk and free WiFi. The rooms at the capsule hotel come with a TV and a safety deposit box. The units feature a shared bathroom, free toiletries and bed linen. The Ruins of Miki Castle is 33 km from Tabist CapsuleHotel APODS Himeji Station, while Shonyu-ji Temple is 33 km away. The nearest airport is Kobe Airport, 66 km from the accommodation.View on Booking.com
Dormy Inn Himeji Natural Hot SpringOnly a 3-minute walk from JR Himeji Station, Dormy Inn Himeji Natural Hot Spring offers modern rooms with free WiFi is provided throughout the property. Guests can relax in the public hot-spring baths or request massages for an extra cost. The air-conditioned rooms feature a flat-screen satellite TV, fridge and an electric kettle with green tea bags. The en suite bathrooms come with a shower, toilet, hairdryer and free toiletries. There is a sauna at this hotel where guests can relax from their travels. A coin-launderette is available at the hotel. Copy services and luggage storage are available at the front desk. Taxi arrangements can also be made at the reception. A semi-buffet breakfast is served at the on-site restaurant. Local menu items are also available upon request. Dormy Inn Himeji Natural Hot Spring is a 20-minute walk from the world heritage site of Himeji Castle. Both Shoshazan Engyo-ji Temple and Himeji Central Park are a 30-minute drive away from Dormy Inn Himeji Natural Hot Spring. Guests can also take JR Tokaido-Sanyo Line to Kobe Station in 40 minutes or Super Hakuto 13 Limited ExpressTottori for 60 minutes to reach Osaka Station.View on Booking.com
Himeji Castle Grandvrio HotelRe-opened in December 2014 after a thorough renovation, Castle Grandvrio Hotel is a 5-minute ride from JR Himeji Train Station on the free shuttle. It boasts public hot spring baths, hot tubs and relaxing massage services. Free WiFi is available in all areas. The simply furnished rooms at Himeji Castle Grandvrio Hotel offer a satellite TV and tea maker. All rooms are air-conditioned, and the en suite bathroom comes with a bathtub and shower. Himeji Castle is 2.5 km from the hotel, and Koko-en Garden is 1 km away. Himeji Art Museum is about a 15-minute drive. Free on-site parking is provided. A coin launderette and free-use internet stations are available. A buffet breakfast is served daily. Harima offers Japanese cuisine in a traditional setting. A Japanese-style pub and cafe are also available.View on Booking.com
Comfort Hotel HimejiAn 8-minute walk from JR Himeji Train Station, Comfort Hotel Himeji features free WiFi and guests can enjoy complimentary coffee and breakfast. Massages can be requested for additional charge. Air-conditioned rooms are equipped with an LCD TV, a small fridge and an attached bathroom with toiletries. The Himeji Comfort Hotel provides a launderette, while the reception is staffed around the clock. Parking is available at a charge. A daily buffet with warm and cold dishes is available free of charge at the lounge space, between 06:30 and 09:30. Guests can enjoy a variety of fresh breads and other Western and Japanese breakfast foods. Hotel Comfort Himeji is a 15-minute walk from both Himeji Castle and Koko-en Garden.View on Booking.com