Mukatsuku peninsula is located in the Yuya district of Nagato city. Its name, “mukatsuku”, resembles the Japanese way of saying “I’m irritated”, which is one thing that makes the place interesting. Another is the somewhat surprising legend that this is the place where Yang Kuei Fei (the Japanese name for Yang Gui Fei, also known as Yang Kwei Fei), one of the world’s famed beauties, arrived ashore alive and then consequently died.
Yang Kuei Fei’s grave is located at Nison-in Temple, and in 1993, a Chinese style park called Yang Kuei Fei no Sato was established next to it.
As Yang Kuei Fei is said to have died at the age of 38, a 3.8-meter statue of her was erected in the park!
Seeing her face, she truly is a beauty, and she has an air of intelligence and elegance. Yang Kuei Fei was the object of Emperor Xuanzong of Tang’s full affection, and a beauty that was the cause of China’s An Lushan Rebellion.
I wonder what she actually looked like…
As a result of the An Lushan Rebellion, Yang Kuei Fei was supposed to have been executed in 756 in China. However, according to the legend, because emperor Xuanzong was so saddened, the commanding officer of the imperial guards just pretended to strangle Yang Kuei Fei. He is said to have let her escape by putting her in a boat.
And the place where Yang Kuei Fei came ashore was a place called Todoguchi on the Mukatsuku peninsula. The legend is written in more detail in “Nison-in History” and the “Legend of Yang Kuei Fei”, documents that have been passed onto Nison-in Temple.
“There’s no proof that the legend is true, but I can’t say that it’s a lie, either. Whether or not to believe in it depends on the individual,” says Chigyo Tadate, the chief priest of Nison‑in Temple.
That may be exactly what the spirit of a romantic adventure is…
In the center of the picture, under Nison-in’s 5-storey pagoda (a tangible cultural property designated by the prefecture), Yang Kuei Fei is said to be resting.
It is said that if you pay a visit to the grave, you will have beautiful children, and there are even rumors that the blessings also include safe birth, fertility, luck in marriage as well as beauty.
Let’s say a couple of prayers just in case!
As the white beads change color when hit by UV-rays, these bracelets, popular at the temple shop, are useful.
With one of these, you too can become a beauty like Yang Kuei Fei… maybe.
Address: 3539 Yuyamukatsukushimo, Nagato city
Closed: Open all year
Access: 90 minutes by car from JR Shinyamaguchi station or JR Shinshimonoseki station, 60 minutes from the Chuugoku Expressway Mine interchange or Ozuki interchange
HP: http://www.k5.dion.ne.jp/~nisonin/ (Japanese)
The Setouchi Finder Editors
> A guided tour, including teatime, where you can see the former “Koshien Hotel” – “Frank Lloyd Wright type” architecture by Arata Endo. / Koshien Hall at Mukogawa Women’s University (Nishinomiya-shi, Hyogo)
> Experience the ancient way of salt making on Kamikamagari-jima Island on the Tobishima Kaido in Aki-nada! / Kamagari Ancient Salt Making Remains Restoration Pavilion & “Amabito-no-Moshio” (Kure-shi, Hiroshima)
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