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An Introduction of Nara

In 2010 Nara celebrated the 1300th anniversary of the establishment of Japan’s first full-fledged capital in Heijo-kyo, the city now known as Nara. Due to its past as the first permanent capital from 710 to 784, Nara remains full of Japan's oldest and largest temples. These historical treasures, such as Hōryū-ji a Buddhist temple known as the world’s largest and oldest wooden buildings existing in the world, are listed in the UNESCO World Heritage Site as Historic Monuments of Ancient Nara. There are eight Historic Monuments including Buddhist temples, Shinto shrines and the excavated remains of the great Imperial Palace from ancient Nara. Numerous tourists from around the world come to visit these historical temples and see the world's largest bronze statue of the Daibutsu, the Great Buddha.

The Kichijo residence and head office is located in the area of Yoshino Nara, close to the sacred sites and pilgrimage routes dating over 1,000 years in the Kii Mountain Range which are listed as a World Heritage Site. The three sacred sites – Yoshino and Omine, Kumano Sanzan, Koyasan – linked by pilgrimage routes deep in the Kii Mountains overlooking the Pacific Ocean is famous not only for the deep religious and cultural history, but for the rich natural scenery. These pilgrimage routes to the ancient capital cities of Nara and Kyoto reflect the fusion of Shinto, rooted in the ancient tradition of nature worship in Japan, and Buddhism, which was introduced from China and the Korean Peninsula.

Yoshino is also famous for being one of the most beautiful locations for viewing cherry blossoms in Japan. The beauty of the Senbon Zakura (named after the meaning “The view of one thousand cherry blossom trees”) is breathtaking and attracts tourist from around the world to come enjoy the panoramic view of 30,000 cherry blossom trees covering the mountain areas of Yoshino.

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