Friday, February 1, 2013

Yabakei Gorge & Aonodomon


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Honyabakei is a small town south of Nakatsu in Oita Prefecture. in 2005 the town was merged with Nakatsu.

The draincover depicts Yabakei Gorge and Aonodomon.

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The gorge was created by the Yamakuni River cutting through the biggest volcanic plateau in Japan.

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The result is some spectacular rock formations and sheer cliffs that are particularly popular in the Fall season.

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Aonodomon, which means "blue tunnel" is an almost 200 meter long tunnel carved into the base of the cliffs. According to legend it was carved by a single monk named Zenkai using a hammer and chisel and took him 30 years to complete.

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Earlier in his life Zenkai had committed a murder and to atone for his sins her carved the tunnel to make the rout to a local shrine safer for pilgrims.

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