A site set up by a local guide to provide information about places of interest in Wakayama City.
Nice Places in Wakayama City
Especially for Long-stay Travelers and Long-term Residents in Kansai
Please be sure to check the latest information including transportation you need for yourself.
"Kii" is a former name for the area of present Wakayama Prefecture and "fudoki" is a name of an official local report compiled under imperial order in the early 7th century, Nara Period. "Oka" means "hill" and "no" connects two words like "of" and so "Kii-fudoki-no-oka" means "Hill of Imperial Local Report in Wakayama Prefecture," inspiring atmosphere of ancient time to many Japanese.
Kii-fudoki-no-oka-no-oka is a prefectural park which has a history museum of burial mounds called "Kofun."
Burial mounds (Kofun) developed between the 3rd century and the 7th century, Kofun Period, in Japan. It is estimated leaders of local clans were buried in places each of them dominated. Some of them have a direct relationship with the present imperial family. More than 160,000 burial mounds have been found all over Japan.
Kii-fudoki-no-oka-no-oka is in an area where about 500 burial mounds of various sizes are located. The cluster is one of the largest in Japan and is designated as National Special Historic Site.
Map at Entrance
There is a big map at the entrance of the park. It is written also in English. It says it is about 3 kilometers long when you go around.
The museum in the concrete main building opened in August 1971. Five curators and one botanical specialist being here now.
Giant Camphor Tree
It is displayed in front of the main building. The 40-ton trunk was found in a nearby river after heavy rain of a typhoon in 2011.
Haniwa is a clay figure buried as one of burial goods. This head of a human-shaped haniwa has another face in the back, too.
I hear bird-shaped haniwas with outstretched wings are very rare. What was the role ancient people gave to the flying bird?
Walking in Woods
The area has two circular routes. One is a hill trail only for walkers and the other is a wider road where trucks can pass.
The 150-meter-high hill is covered with trees and has winding walking path for beginners. Many walkers come here in spring and fall.
You can approach a lot of real Kofun (burial mounds) along the walking route and three of them have stone rooms you can enter.
The three stone rooms you can enter have electrical lighting. Your own flashlight may be more useful for you to observe the structure.
Dainichi No. 35
Dainichi-yama Grave No. 35 is 86 meter long and is one of the largest Kohun in Wakayama Pref. It was built in the early 6th century.
Various kinds of Haniwa (ancient clay figures) were unearthed at this site and replicas are displayed as the original ones were placed.
View from No. 35
An ancient leader (a local king/clan) of the present Wakayama City area was buried at Grave No. 35. You can see the same view as the ruler did.
A pit dwelling in ancient style is reproduced by the main building. You can enter the inside with a earth floor and a cooking stove.
Old Folk House
An old folk house was removed and reconstrucｔed near the main building. It was originally built about 200 years ago in ta mountain area.
Other Folk Houses
A merchant's house built in 1807 and a fisherman's house built in 1749 were also reconstructed near the main building.
Kii-fudoki-no-oka is an excellent place for many people.
Especially for those who are interested in
history or culture in ancient Japan before Buddhism was introduced into Japan.
walking in forests.
How to get to Kii-fudoki-no-oka
You can get on a bus for Kii-fudoki-no-oka at a bus stop named 'JR Wakayama Sta. (East),' which is located 30m away in front of East Entrance (opposite side of the main entrance). Please check bus schedules and others at the website of Wakayama Bus (Bus Company);
Map between JR Wakayama Sta. and Kii-fudoki-no-oka