|Photo: Tonya Colvin Thomas|
Since my husband had a free weekend, we decided to visit a hidden gem that we've heard about from friends. Shomyo-ji Temple was built in 1258 and is very easily accessed by the Kanazawa-Bunko exit on the Keikyu line. Take the EAST exit and follow the green path on the street (see pictures below). At the first intersection, it seems as though the green path has disappeared. However, just look across the street to the big orange building and it picks up again there. Follow it directly to the temple. It's maybe a 15 minute walk - and that's with slow children! You can visit the temple, but there are also some great hiking trails directly behind it up the hill.
|This street leading to the temple is gorgeous during cherry blossom season. See this blog: http://ourcrazynavylife.blogspot.jp/2009/04/shomyoji-temple-hanami.html|
|The girls were really excited to go over the bridge.|
|We made friends with the pigeons who obviously are used to being fed by people.|
|Just to the right of the temple, we saw this opening in the trees and decided to follow it.|
|If you have kids, be warned that there are lots of stairs!|
|There were nice views as we got higher up the hill.|
|Look how high we are! That's the temple down there in the center!|
|This would be a great spot to bring a lunch.|
|I LOVE this picture of her.|
|Daddy got a good workout....|
|Where we came out. Follow the street down to the end, take a left and follow that all the way down the hill. You'll end up across from the train station.|
There were multiple trails to take and our oldest was disappointed that we didn't end up back at the temple. You could easily spend your afternoon hiking these trails with kids, and we had some GREAT views at the very top.
This train station also had a few options for anyone who didn't come prepared with food, including a 7-11, Baskin-Robbins and a KFC. Yes, that's right. A KFC. We hadn't tried Japanese KFC, so decided to give it a whirl. And it was great! We were so ready to sit down and rest for a while.
We loved the temple and it was such a quick, easily accessible trip, that we'll probably be going back a few more times - especially during sakura (cherry blossom) season. Our girls gave the trip their seal of approval, so this is a great option for families.