Sandanbeki Cave is a
scenic spot located inside of Yoshino-Kumano National Park. It is a cave
that stretches under the bottom of rock wall named Sandanbeki cliff.
We made our way from the parking
lot past stores and gift shops -- stopping only to buy umbrellas since
we were getting soaked from the cold wind and rain. We followed a path
along the ocean front, past signs and statues to the cave reception area
where we purchased entrance tickets.
An elevater took us 36 metres
down to the underground cave which featured a labyrinth of tunnels and
slippery paths. We made it to an open observation area where we were treated
to the sight of Wakayama's section of the Pacific Ocean lashing against
the steep cliffs around us.
We then moved to a large cavern
decorated with over 100 hanging lanterns. Most prominent here was a large
statue of water god Benzaiten, one of Japan's seven lucky gods. She is
the goddess of everything that flows, and is almost always found near water.
She was accompanied by a bevy of statues of her servants. There were also
costumes and armour from pirates and soldiers of the past in front of painted
backdrops that we posed in for some unusual photos.
Further on we saw parts of the
cave that were used as hideouts for pirates and even armies. It was amazing
to see the power of the surf surging through the cave. Many attractions
here were identified on bi-lingual signs. Many of these signs are featured
in photos below.
There was a rock called "Shiofuki-iwa"
(Spouting Rock), under which is a cavity which fills up with water until
it eventually spouts out of a hole in the rock.