Tourist spot in Fukui Prefecture

Tojinbo [東尋坊]

Photo by Fukui Prefectual Tourism Federation

Pleasure boat and Tojinbo Tower
Pleasure boat and Tojinbo Tower
Photo by Fukui Prefectual Tourism Federation

Tojinbo is the very steep rocky coast facing the Sea of Japan.
Both "o"s in the word are pronounced long, so it is read as "Tôjinbô".

It is about 6 km west of Awara hot spring resort.

The length of the coast is about 2 km, and the whole coastline has the cliffs over 25 meters high.

The type of rocks are called pyroxene-andesite, and were formed by activity of a volcano about 12 to 13 million years ago.

A lot of columnar joints were formed, and the scale of Tojinbo is one of the largest three places in the world. (Other places are Mount Kumgang in Korea and western coast in Norway.)

So it is very precious from an geological viewpoint, so it is designeted as a national natural treasure.

Rocks of Tojinbo
Rocks of Tojinbo
Photo by Fukui Prefectual Tourism Federation

From the edge of the cliff in Tojinbo
From the edge of the cliff in Tojinbo

The name of "Tôjinbô" is from the following legend.

In the late 12th century, a priest Tôjinbô was in Heisenji temple.

Heisenji was a great Buddhist temple located about 45 km southeast of this coast and many priest were the soldier to protect the temple.
(Please see the page of Heisenji Hakusan Shrine)

Tôjinbô was also one of the the soldier priests.
He was very strong but tremendously monstrous.
Because no one could control him, the village people around the temple had been really having trouble with his bad actions.

There was a beautiful girl in the temple, and a priest Magara Gakunen and Tôjinbô were the rivals in love.

So, a group of priests including Gakunen worked out a plan.

One day in 1182, they had a drinking party on this scenic cliff and invited Tôjinbô.

It is very fine, so they offered Tôjinbô one Sake after another.
Tôjinbô had been drunk, then he fell asleep.

At that moment, Gakunen pushed Tôjinbô from the top of the cliff into the sea.

As soon as Tôjinbô sank into the sea, a terrible storm came up.
It is said that the storm continued for 49 days.
(In Buddhism, dead soul travels to the Heaven for 49 days.)

Since that, this cliff has been called as Tôjinbô.

Observatory of Tojinbo
Observatory of Tojinbo

At the foot of Tojinbo cliffs
At the foot of Tojinbo cliffs

There are several unique rocks along the coast, and we can view from the pleasure boat.
It takes about 30 minutes to cruise.
We can board the boat near Tojinbo bus stop.

Around Tojinbo bus stop, there are some souvenir shops.

Also there is Tojinbo Tower which is an observatory with a restaurant near the shops.
(Unfortunately, we can't see the scenery of Tojinbo from the observatory.)

From there, a walking trail along the coast is set up.
It leads toward northwest, and the length is about 4 km.

By the way, Tojinbo is known for suicide place.
So the people around Tojinbo set several signs saying to help prevent from committing suicide.

How to get here

By Hokuriku Shinkansen, get off at Awara-onsen station.
About 8 minutes from Fukui, about 30 minutes from Kanazawa.
Then by route bus for Mikuni-kanko-hotel, about 43 minutes.

Or, by Echizen Railway Line, from Fukui to Mikuniko station, about 50 minutes.
Then by route bus, about 5 minutes.

Other Tourist Attractions in Fukui Prefecture

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