Yoshino River flows east to west across Shikoku.
In the middle basin of the river, there is an area called Oboke. This name is absolutely not an insult ('Boke' = 'idiot, fool')!!
There are various theories on the name's origins, but apparently an ancient Japanese work 'hoki' meaning a cliff or such steep place was altered and so the place got the name "Oboke" (大歩危 in kanji).
According to another theory, the name is taken from the expression, "It's dangerous (危 one meaning = 'dangerous') when you walk (歩 one meaning = 'walk' ) in big steps (大 is the character for 'big')."
And what is dangerous? The terrain!
Both sides of Oboke Gorge, through which Yoshino River flows, are a continuation of intricately complex marble-like cliffs.
The terrain is extremely steep, so it does indeed seem dangerous to take big steps… Even normal walking would seem dangerous.
Though created as the flow of Yoshino River has scraped off the crystalline schist a little bit at a time over millennia, these cliffs look like the work of a giant sculptor!
They have been designated as one of Japan's natural monuments.
Next, we will show you the best way to enjoy the scenery of Oboke Gorge.
This is the Oboke Gorge Sightseeing Boat.
Touring the magnificent gorge, this boat truly holds the best seats available to nature's art museum.
We continue sailing downstream while listening to the boatman's explanation. The combination of the emerald green of the river, the intensity of the cliffs that seem to surround you, and the beautiful mountains, is simply overwhelming.
Midway through the course, we come to the lion shaped "Shishi Iwa" (Lion Rock).
Can you see the lion shaped rock?
If you look carefully, there may be other rocks that seem to be shaped like something.
Hop on the boat and try and find them for yourself!
The boarding place is Oboke Gorge Mannaka, which is situated next to Yoshino River in Miyoshi city, Tokushima prefecture. If you visit the western part of Tokushima prefecture, please come by. The breathtaking views of Oboke Gorge are waiting for you!
Oboke Kai Mannaka ( Oboke Gorge Mannaka)
Place: 1520 Nishiu, Yamashirocho, Miyoshi city, Tokushima Prefecture
Business hours: 9:00〜17:00
Holidays: Open all year (Canceled when bad weather)
Fee: Adults JPY1,080, Children JPY540 (from 3-year-olds until elementary school age)
HP: http://www.mannaka.co.jp/ (Japanese)
Setouchi Finder Photo-writer: Daisuke Chiba
Daisuke Chiba / Photo-writer I was born in 1985 in Miyoshi City, Tokushima Prefecture, and now live in Tokushima City. After graduating university, I worked at a publishing company as an editor for various mooks, and in April 2014 I went freelance. I work as a photographer, copy-writer and editor, but also do product development and other stuff as well. If anyone needs me, I can do anything! Except, in spite of my being from Tokushima, dancing - I’m really bad at dancing Awa Odori!
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