This time, I would like to introduce Funatsu Tainai Shrine in Yamanashi.
Do you know what a “tree shape” is? When a volcano erupts, lava swallows trees and other objects and flows down the river, eventually the lava hardens as it cools, and the wood inside the swallowed objects rots and weathered away, leaving a hollow in the lava.
This is a tree form.
The Funatsu Tainai Shrine is the place where you can visit the “Tainai Jukata,” a cave formed by a series of tree formations.
Now, let us take a bow at Funatsu Tainai Shrine.
Outline of the Shrine
The shrine is located in Fuji-Goko Town, Yamanashi Prefecture.
This shrine is located in Fuji-Goko Town, a town at the foot of Mt. Fuji, and the shrine can be seen quietly at the west end of the Fuji-Subaru Line entrance, where it is possible to drive up to the fifth station of Mt.
Fuji is famous for the Aokigahara Sea of Trees, but the foot of Mt. Fuji is basically covered with greenery, and this shrine is surrounded by greenery except for the road side facing the shrine.
Deities and Benefits
- Founded: Enpo era (around 1673)
- Deity：Konohana Sakuyahime no Mikoto
- Benefit：Prayer for the fulfillment of love and safe delivery
- Admission：200 yen for adults, 100 yen for children
- Address: 6603 Funatsu, Fujikawaguchiko-machi, Minamitsuru-gun, Yamanashi 401-0301
- Parking: Available
- Hours: 9:00-17:00
The Tainai Arboretum is currently undergoing the Corona Disaster, so visitors are allowed to see the Arboretum one at a time, one group at a time. Therefore, depending on the timing, there may be a wait time, and if you do not visit before the closing time of 5:00 p.m., you may be refused entrance to the shrine.
Walking in the precincts of the temple
First, you must go to the reception desk to see the Tainai Tree Formation.
To visit the shrine, you must first go to the reception desk. You can see the reception desk in this lodge-like building. You can go to the reception desk at this lodge-like building.
Incidentally, this is also where you can get a red seal for this shrine.
As mentioned above, the tree-viewing is done one group at a time. This time, there were two groups in front of us, so we decided to take a walk around the shrine grounds while we waited for about 30 minutes. It seems that the Tainai tour was already a popular spot during the Edo period (1603-1867), and pictures from that time still remain.
There are many different types of tree forms, and the explanation of how they are made and the types of tree forms are also posted on the site.
Into the womb!
After about 30 minutes of waiting, it was time to go inside the womb. First of all, you must wear a helmet, or you will definitely regret it.
The entrance is like this.
The interior of the womb looks like this. Even the entrance is quite narrow, and if you are an adult, you will hit your head hard even if you are crouching down.
The rock surface has a rib-like pattern, which explains why it is called the womb.
The narrowest part of the tree shape, the diameter seems to be smaller than 1 meter, and it is so large that you have to kneel down to proceed.
After advancing through the narrow part, we were able to see the sacred body. It is a moment when all the hard work pays off.
There is another place called “Father’s womb” where another sacred body is enshrined.
When we came to the exit, we could finally see the light from outside.
The narrow cave is so open that if you stretch out your arm you will hit a rock. I can understand why this cave is called the cave of reincarnation.
I forgot to take a picture, so I will upload it later.
That’s all for this visit.
To be honest, I underestimated the path to the temple, but it was a painful experience for me. A small child can go through it easily, but if it is a hole of about 90 cm in diameter, you have to go through a very cramped place because you have to go through a hole that is only about half the size of your own body.
On the other hand, it is not easy to visit such a place. If you are planning to visit the temple, it is highly recommended that you come well prepared with shoes and clothes.