We thought Nara Park was blissfully serene, but ascending 300 metres through dense primeval forest, we arrived at one of the most tranquil places we have ever been. Although there was a car-park at the top, very few people seemed to have ventured up. We wandered round watching the wildlife, as well as constantly spotting more shrines and temples.
On our descent we came across a secluded glade which must rank among the most idyllic places I have ever seen. A small pagoda, a couple of stone lions, a few lanterns and a shrine in the most truly beautiful setting, a sight which I will never forget. This short film doesn't do justice to the almost holy serenity of the area. On our foot-weary descent back to Nara Park we suddenly heard the screeching of what we assume were cicadas, although their cacophonous volume was like something out of a science-fiction film. We never saw one of these noisy creatures, and as it was easy to assume they might be a foot across we were probably glad we didn't!