Koyasan (Mount Koya) is the heart and soul of Wakayama Prefecture. Koyasan is the birthplace of Shingon Buddhism, founded by Kobo Daishi (Kukai) in the year 885. The mountain is a spiritual place with over 100 temples that line the streets and surrounding areas. You can stay overnight in a temple here and experience the serenity of this profound site. In addition to its Zen history Wakayama Prefecture, just south of Osaka, is the home of the Shirahama area. Shirahama boasts a huge beach and hot spring resort, amusement parks, hiking, and a rugged coastline with interesting rock formations and small islands dotting the horizon.