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There is an old Japanese proverb that says "Think nothing splendid until you have seen Nikko". You will find the meaning in this saying in the mountains of Tochigi Prefecture, some 150 km (93 miles) north of Tokyo by train.
Leyasu, who had made himself the absolute monarch of Japan and died in 1616, and was the founder of the Tokugawa shogunate, has his final resting place is here in Nikko.
When he died he was deified by the Japanese imperial court and then subsequently known as then Tosho Daigongen translated as "The Great Incarnation Who Illuminates the East".
His remains were taken in a grand procession and were brought here to a site of a religious center founded some eight centuries before.
His personal fief alone was worth enough to feed and support some 2.5 million people. Toshogu the mausoleum complex that he commanded for himself in his apotheosis, is extraordinary.
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Nikko's famous Toshogu shrine is a place of time-honored traditions: you will see local devotees write wooden prayers and the "hear none, speak none, see none-monkeys" demonstrating their aversion to evil.
Here you will find truly national treasures: the numerous buildings of the Toshogu Shrine feature a lavish opulence that is found nowhere else in Japan.
Exchange rate fluctuations can have a considerable impact on your trip budget. If your home currency has appreciated in value in the recent term over the currency of your destination you are likely to find the place inexpensive.
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When is the best time of year to go to Nikko ? Check our average weather graph and table. If know about Nikko then why not join our community and tell us about the climate, or use the drop box at the bottom of the page to tell us about it?
Graphic showing average weather in Nikko in Celcius and Centimeters (Change to Farenheit and Inches)
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