japanese stuff    
Yomeimon gate
Inner shrine

About an hour and a half to two hours by train from Tokyo, Nikko is a must see for visitors to Japan. One of the most impressive historical sites in Japan, Nikko has a large temple and shrine complex. The most well-known of the structures at Nikko is the Yomeimon Gate, a lavishly decorated gate opening into the main temple complex.

There is an old Japanese saying that goes along the lines of, "You can't say you know beautiful until you have seen Nikko". Nestled among giant trees up in the mountains, the combination of the natural serenity with the historical roots and religious mysteriousness of the place can be awe inspiring. One of the most popular times to go is during the autumn. The changing of the leaves adds an extra dimension to the beauty of Nikko.

The shrines at Nikko are primarily dedicated to one of Japan's most famous shoguns, Tokugawa Ieyasu, who is credited with being the first shogun that ruled over the entirety of Japan, and whose line lasted over 250 years through 1868. His burial place is at Nikko.