The wide ocean views of the coastal journey to Shingu give way to gorges and mountainsides of a deep mossy green when you pass through the tunnel five minutes north of the city. Up the Kumano River, the walls of the steep-sided Doro-kyo rise above you. Farther up, sheer 150-foot cliffs tower over the Kumano-gawa. Tours of the gorge depart from Shingu Station and can be booked through the Shingu Tourist Association Information Center (¥4,800), which is located at Shingu Station. A bus goes as far as Shiko (40 minutes), and then a flat-bottom, fan-driven boat travels an hour upriver to Doro-hatcho and back again. Outside seats on the boats are the best.


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