Wakayama

Restaurant Guide in Wakayama

Wakayama prefecture is located in the Kinki region and is on the west side of the Kii Peninsula, the largest peninsula in Japan. Its capital is Wakayama city. The southern part of the prefecture is a great mountainous region. Wakarayama city flourished as the “castle town” of one of the three Tokugawa clan branches, and therefore, there are many historical s

ites in the prefecture including the Wakayama Castle. It is rightfully called the “domain of hot springs” as there are Shirahama hot springs, which is one of the three oldest hot springs in Japan, Nanki-Katsuura hot springs with as many as 175 original flowing sources, and Ryujin hot springs known as one of the three most famous hot springs with skin beautifying effects. In addition, pilgrims to the temples and shrines of the sacred sites and pilgrimage routes in the Kii Mountain Range, which was registered as a world heritage site in 2004, continue to visit the area. Other world heritages such as Kumano Nachi Taisha shrine in Nachikatsuura and Nachi Falls are also worth visiting. Especially, of all the falls in Mount Nachi, the “Great Waterfall of Nachi” has a drop of 133 meters, is 13 meters wide, and its basin is over 10 meters deep. It is said that over one ton of water per second gushes down this waterfall as though ripping the cliff in half. The power of the water that falls over the cliff is dynamic enough to call it “the greatest waterfall in Japan.” When viewed from a distance together with a red three-story pagoda that stands near the waterfall, even more beautiful scenery can be enjoyed. As for fisheries in Wakayama prefecture, tuna fishing is thriving in Nachikatsuura while bonito, pike conger and hairtail are also caught here. As for agriculture, production of tangerines and plums boasts the highest in Japan while the growing of fruits such as hassaku citrus and persimmons is also thriving. Meharizushi is Wakayama’s traditional dish. This is a local dish of Kumamo area prepared by wrapping a rice ball with a lightly pickled mustard leaf. They say that meharizushi originated in what people ate as lunch during their work in forestry or agriculture. There are many specialty products that are associated with vegetarian diets at Buddhist temples such as Kinzan-ji miso and Koya tofu.

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