Nikko and Mt. Fuji Photo Tours are not just about taking photos. My team and I know that a photo adventure in Japan also means understanding and learning about the native Japanese culture. Japanese dogma has made “Zen” a familiar concept around the world; Japan’s aesthetics are inspirationally drawn from elements of nature and Zen Buddhist philosophies. The art of traditional Japanese gardens and architecture with their aesthetically pleasing and elegantly simple designs have inspired and fascinated generations of artisans. Our Mt. Fuji Photography workshop journey focuses on the ancient Japanese artisan's psyche while on the ancient Buddhist Shinto pilgrimage routes of sacred Nikko and Mt. Fuji territories, designated by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. Our photo tour-workshop begins in an ancient bamboo forest, to Shinrin-Yoku (森林浴) with camera in hand during the golden hour, then off to Nikko for our grand welcome dinner, and you will enjoy the art of fine Japanese cuisine with a toast! During dinner, we take a moment to discuss our next day's photography and options so that you will be well prepared and have a good nights sleep.
Before Nikko awakes, we will capture hidden spots and the sacred Shinkyo bridge, the gateway to the Futarasan Jinja best viewed at first light. Nikko's Toshogu is Japan's most lavishly decorated shrine complex. The buildings are lacquered and decorated with vibrant colors, and the pillars and other structures are covered in a multitude of carvings. The carvings are not simply design elements; they are expressions of spirituality (Reiju Holy Spiritual animals) as well as scholarly and philosophical-mystical beings. The Rinno-Ji Buddhist Temple founded in the 8th-century is both serene and mesmerizing.
UNESCO World Heritage Site YOMEI GATE Nikko, Japan.
The UNESCO World Heritage Site Shrines and Temples of Nikko encompass over 100 buildings and structures and for centuries together with their natural surrounding, have been a sacred site. They are closely associated with the history of ‘The Shogun Tokugawa Ieyasu Samurai,’ and the Tokugawa Shoguns that followed. The shrines and temples contain both Shinto and Buddhist elements which are common throughout Japan; Blain our senior photographer and your photography workshop leader on this workshop is well versed with most of the religious iconography and is most happy to share his knowledge in what he loves to photograph.
Nikko Toshogu Shrine a museum hanging print!
Kegon Waterfalls is one of the top 3 most picturesque waterfalls in Japan. And we know the best time and spots to photograph the towering 97 meters (318 feet) of Kegon Falls along with the breathtaking view of Lake Chuzenji. During our photo tour workshop, we will visit various waterfalls, lakes, and places of natural beauty as we explore the Lake Chuzenji region.
Two of many hidden spots of Nikko.
Mt. Fuji has been worshipped as a sacred mountain for as long as humans have lived nearby and is designated a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. Originally, Fujisan was a sacred mountain for the Ainu, recognized by the government of Japan in 2018 as the First Nations people. The Fuji Five Lakes at the base of Mount Fuji are comprised of Yamanaka, Kawaguchi, Saiko, Shoji, and Motsosu lakes. Over 95% of Japanese have never visited all the Fuji five lakes; you will be among the few that have photographed and ambled the shores of all the fuji five lakes, you will also, visit many places only locals know. And enjoy Shinrin-Yoku (森林浴) with camera in hand at the base of Mt. Fuji's forests and lakes in solitude, that Dan Gibson a fellow Canadian relished, sought and shared with the world.