Do you believe in Yokai?
Most of us must hate ghosts and demons because it is so terrifying. I am one of those people who hates those types of beings, especially “yokai”. When I was a child, I couldn’t go to the toilet for at least two hours from watching it.
“Yokai” is a supernatural monster from Japanese folklore.
The Japanese first folklore was written at around 722AD, and became famous in the 794-1185 Heian period. Yokai is designed as creepy monsters because it imprints fear in our mind. The phenomenon that superpasses human knowledge is believed to be a trick of Yokai.
From ancient times, it was believed that every spirit dwells in everything in Japan. To prove this situation, there is a phrase called “there are seven gods in each grain of rice”. It means we should respect everything, even the smallest things.
The meaning of kanji “Yokai(妖怪)”
妖(Yo)：attactive; bewitching; calamity
About Mizuki Shigeru and his work (GeGeGe no Kitaro)
The biggest reason why Yokai became well known to us is because of his work. Mizuki Shigeru was a very famous Japanese manga artist. The most popular manga he wrote is “GeGeGe no Kitaro”. It was published in 1954. The story of itself is the main character “Kitaro” who protects the human world from evil yokai.
FYI, GeGeGe came from the bad pronunciation of Shigeru.
When he was a child, he couldn’t pronounce his name Shigeru perfectly and call himself gegeru. Gegeru pronunciation went more badly and became gegege.
Mizuki Shigeru Road
Mizuki Shigeru Road is the sightseeing spot that motifs his work (mainly GeGeGe no Kitaro). The length is about 800m from Sakaiminato station to the end of the road. There are 177 sculptures which are designed as GeGeGe no Kitaro characters.
Do not worry. There is no real Yokai on this road! (I believe so, may be, probably,,)
Make sure to find Kitaro’s sculpture as it is the main character of the series.
At night, there are also some events that attract a lot of tourists. The picture shows a projection of some characters on the road. You wouldn’t get bored even if you stayed a whole day here.
From the tottori station, you need to get on a train to reach the sakaiminato station.
If you got in trouble to find a train, please find a train like the one below. It will take you there.
Have a good trip to the yokai world:)
Taishomachi, Sakaiminato, Tottori 684-0004
Author: Satoshi Nakano