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Tour of Munakata / Fukutsu ~Okinoshima Island and Related Sites in Munakata Region~

Play time
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Okinoshima Island and Related Sites in Munakata Region was added to UNESCO World Heritage Tentative List in January, 2009.
We will visit the Related Sites in Munakata Region with Okinoshima Island - where gods reside - being at its core. The Sites reflect the history and the nature worship belief people continue to hold throughout the ages. 
The episode also features a recent hit entree of Fukutsu gourmet dish: red sea bream-chazuke.

Intro

Introの画像

Okinoshima Island and Related Sites in Munakata Region was added to the UNESCO World Heritage Tentative List  in January of 2009.

In this episode, we will introduce you to five of the sites in Munakata City and Fukutsu City from Okinoshima Island and Related Sites in Munakata Region.

Okinoshima Island

Okinoshima Islandの画像

Okinoshima Island - located approximately 50km from the shores of

Okinoshima Island, Munakata City - is found in central Genkai-nada Sea.

Between the late 4th century and the late 9th century, the people of Munakata region 

erected this ancient monument on the island, serving as the 

object of their faith for nature worship.

It has been standing here almost completely untouched since then.

Far from there across the vast waters are Oshima Island,  Munakata Taisha - which enshrining three female gods of Munakata - 

and other important, registered sites and relics portraying the past and the continual faith the locals display toward Okinoshima Island.

 

 

Munakata Taisha - Hetsu-Miya

Munakata Taisha - Hetsu-Miyaの画像

Hello,
Hello,
Thank you for having me here today.
Thank you for coming.
So, what is Okinoshima Island and Related Sites in Munakata Region?
Well,
Okinoshima Island as its primary object,
the related sites and relics telling of
the faith toward the Island -
that's Okinoshima Island and Related Sites in Munakata Region.
So, it includes, not only the Okitsu-Miya monument on Okinoshima Island but also,
Nakatsu-Miya in Oshima Island. . .
Hetsu-Miya located right here. . .
Shinbaru-Nuyama Tumulus Cluster. . .
as well as several other historical sites.
So, it's not only Hetsu-Miya.
That's right.
Munakata Taisha usually makes you think of only Hetsu-Miya, but. . .
it's actually Nakatsu-Miya in Oshima Island,
Okitsu-Miya in Okinoshima Island, 
and the Hetsu-Miya: those 3 make up Munakata Taisha.
I didn't know that.
What a magnificent shrine.
It's the main hall of Munakata Taisha - Hetsu-Miya.
I assume it's a very old structure, no?
The honden sanctuary is all the way down there.
This honden is said to have been
said to have been rebuilt by 
Munakata Ujisada in 1578.
Hard to imagine those years.
Standing on this side is the haiden worship hall,
said to have been rebuilt by Kobayakawa Takakage
in 1590 during the Azuchi-Momoyama period.
Needless to say, they are all designated National Treasures of Japan.

Munakata Taisha - Teiniku/Teisanku

Munakata Taisha - Teiniku/Teisankuの画像

These are called Teiniku/Teisanku,
a remote location for Okitsu-Miya and Nakatsu-Miya
within the Hetsu-Miya premises.

Takamiya Saijoh

Takamiya Saijoh の画像

What is this place?
We are at Takamiya Saijoh.
It's strangely silent here.
Right.
It is said to be a sacred ground where gods live.
So, it's where they've found sacrificial items for religious rituals (rotensaishi).
It hasn't changed since. . .
In other words, this entire site is considered
the ruins from the 7th-9th century rotensaishi period.
The relics from the ancient ritual sacrifices which began in Okinoshima in the 1600's -
Over 80,000 of them have been designated as Tangible Cultural Properties of Japan.
They are preserved and displayed within Munakata Taisha Shinpoukan.

 

Uminomichi Munakatakan

Uminomichi Munakatakanの画像

Adjacent to the premises of the Shrine is
Uminomichi Munakatakan, revealing the inside of the 
prohibited island of Okinoshima. 
The virtual tour of the territory at the 3D theater is a must-see.
You can see the ocean from up here. . .
You can also see the rice fields over there, right?
It is said that the shore line came up there
back in the ancient period.
In order to get to the Korean Peninsula,
the shortest route was via Okinoshima Island.
However, it also meant rough seas. . .
hence the strong presence of various shrines here,
reflecting people's prayers for safe voyage.
So, through the ocean and the islands of Okinoshima and Oshima,
the heart and the will of the people have been reflected throughout the ages.

 

Shinbaru-Nuyama Tumulus Cluster

Shinbaru-Nuyama Tumulus Clusterの画像

Here we are now in Fukutsu City,
about 11 minutes by car from Munakata Taisha.
Is that hill over there in front us the Cluster?
Yes, that is Shinbaru-Nuyama Tumulus Cluster.
It is a cluster; so there are many like this, right?
Yes, there are 41 of these tomb mounds.
So, they go far beyond where we can see. . .
The one we can see here is from the 6th century;
There is a "keyhole" shaped tumulus beyond this near the ocean
along with a large-sized circular tumulus.
These are really large when you see it up close.
Astounding. . .
This is that key-hole-shaped tumulus.
It actually does look like a keyhole from above.
It's that thing we've seen in our textbooks. . .
It is believed to be the tumulus of Munakatanokimi, the man in power at that time,
built around the mid 6th century.
 

Gallery Kura

Gallery Kuraの画像

Munakata and Fukutsu are known for great seafood.
So, we are going to a popular, local spot.
What's this dish right here?
It's red sea bream-chazuke: a Tsuyazaki specialty item.
 A red sea bream-chazuke. Appetizing and smells delicious. 
The catch today is off of a local fishing boat named "Sumiyoshi-maru" out of Tsuyazaki Fishery Port.
It was caught today!
That's right.
What do you do with this soup?
Pour it over the bowl.
Let's try.
Wow, smells nice!
Let's eat.
It's rare to be able to have such a fresh fish. . .
It's very good.
Why is it that sea breams out of Tsuyazaki are high in quality?
The ones we catch around here specifically are "okanotai" red sea breams:
they tend to be fattier than other kinds.
That's what gives the juicy taste.
I see.
The region where the people have lived off the ocean for years - 
who knows, maybe in the ancient days too,
people might have eaten red sea bream chazuke.

Michinoeki Munakata: Anzunosato

Michinoeki Munakata: Anzunosatoの画像

It's all about gift shopping at the end of the trip.
For any and all shopping in Munakata and Fukutsu,
Michinoeki Munakata with fresh local sea foods and veggies. . .
as well as  Anzunosato and many others are
highly recommended.

の画像

Okinoshima Island and Related Sites in Munakata Region found in Munakata City and Fukutsu City -
We were able to take a glimpse at the conviction of
our ancient people with the sea leading to Okinoshima Island.
Let us continue our support for Okinoshima Island and Related Sites in Munakata Region
to be promoted into UNESCO World Heritage List in the near future.

Map

Videos on the surrounding area

[Play time 5:20]

Jinoshima Natural Seaweed

[Play time 4:35]

Munakata's Oshima:A Small Journey by Sea

Munakata/Oshima Island[Play time 6:56]

Kyushu OLLE - Munakata/Oshima Island