Tourist spot in Kochi Prefecture

Cape Muroto [室戸岬]

Cape Muroto
Cape Muroto
Photo by Kochi Visitors & Convention Association

Coast of Cape Muroto
Coast of Cape Muroto

Cape Muroto is a cape extending to the south in the east part of Kochi Prefecture.

It is located about 90 km southeast of Kochi city and about 120 km south-southwest of Tokushima city.

On the map, the tip of the cape is sharp like a beak of bird.
A ridge of the mountains sloping into the Pacific Ocean.

Therefore, there is no flatland around the cape.
But, there are little rocky cliffs facing the sea, so a smooth national road runs along the coast.

Statue of Nakaoka Shintaro near Cape Muroto
Statue of Nakaoka Shintaro

Lighthouse of Cape Muroto
Lighthouse of Cape Muroto

Around the tip of the cape, there is a statue of Nakaoka Shintaro (中岡慎太郎).

Nakaoka Shintaro (1838-1867) was a samurai born in a village near Muroto.
He collaborated with Sakamoto Ryoma and led to overthrew the feudal government and found a new modern state.

And there is an observatory on the side of the hill, and the climbing path starts from around the statue of Nakaoka Shintaro.

There is a lighthouse on a hill about 155 meters high.
It was built in 1899, and is still at work.
The light reaches 26 nautical miles (about 48 km) far.

Main gate of Hotsumisakiji
Main gate of Hotsumisakiji

Main temple of Hotsumisakiji
Main temple of Hotsumisakiji
Photo by Kochi Visitors & Convention Association

Near the lighthouse, there is Hotsumisakiji temple (最御崎寺).

This temple is at the level of about 165 meters.
To visit this temple, you we must climb a sloping trail from the cape.
And to the lighthouse, there is a trail from this temple.

Hotsumisakiji is a Buddhist temple of Shingon Buddhism, and was founded in 807.

High priest Kuukai (空海, 774-835) started to do ascetic training in the deep mountains at the age of 19.

He stayed around Cape Muroto in his training travel.

He was living in a small cave near the sea.

One day, in the midst of hard training, a bright star flew into his mouth.
It is said that he reached enlightenment at that time.

Additionally, his name "Kuukai" is the combination of "kuu" meaning "sky" and "kai" meaning "sea".

He was seeing only sky and sea during the training here, so he used the words for his priest name.


Cave of Mikurodo
Cave of Mikurodo

The cave is called Mikurodo (御厨人窟).
It is located about 800 meters north-northeast of the tip of the cape.
It is at the eastern foot of the hill, and is near the national road.

Kuukai created a Buddha statue and built Hotsumisakiji for enshrining the statue.

Hotsumisakiji is designated as the 24th temple of "88 temples of Shikoku Pilgrimage" based on Kuukai's training.

This place looks like the end of the land.
You have to travel a long distance from the main cities.

And, around this cape, there are only a few shops.
So you can feel great "sky" and "sea" here quietly.

How to get here

From Kochi city, by route bus for Aki, 1 hour and 24 minutes from Harimaya-bashi to Aki bus terminal.
Change to the bus for Muroto-misaki, about 1 hour and 30 minutes.

Or, from Kochi, the train of by JR Dosan Line and Gomen-Nahari Line, from Kochi to Nahari, about 1 hour and 30 to 40 minutes.
Change to the bus for Muroto-misaki, about 55 minutes.

From Tokushima city, by JR Mugi Line and Asa-Kaigan Line, from Kochi to Kannoura, about 1 hour and 50 minutes by limited express, about 3 hours by local train.
(We must change the train at Mugi or Kaifu stations.)
Change to the bus for Muroto-misaki, about 50 minutes.

Other Tourist Attractions in Kochi Prefecture

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