About Us: The Dewa Sanzan Monzenmachi Project Team

Written by Timothy Bunting

The Monzenmachi Project Team

In 2017, people with an affinity to the Dewa Sanzan gathered in a small community centre on Mt. Haguro. Shrine workers, Shukubo Pilgrim Lodge owners, the Haguro Town Tourism Association, and local tourism companies all gathered for one aim; to spread the splendour of the Dewa Sanzan throughout the world. Before long, this group came to be known as the Monzenmachi (meaning the area in front of the shrine gates) project team.

Haguro Shugendo

Yamabushi training on Mt. Gassan of the Dewa Sanzan
Yamabushi training on Mt. Gassan of the Dewa Sanzan

For over a millennium, the Dewa Sanzan has been training ground for followers of Haguro Shugendo. Haguro Shugendo is an ancient Japanese mountain religion, where Yamabushi, mountain monks, undertake rituals to learn the secrets of nature. Then, the Yamabushi take what they learn in nature to provide guidance to ordinary folk living in towns and villages.

In the past, only those specially selected were able to venture into the mountains. However, the mountains have opened up in recent years to anyone searching for a spiritual rebirth. Our mission is to share the opportunity for spiritual rebirth on the Dewa Sanzan with as many people as possible.

Support the Dewa Sanzan

The Shrine Gates of Mt. Yudono of the Dewa Sanzan in the autumn
The Shrine Gates of Mt. Yudono of the Dewa Sanzan in the autumn

So, if you like what you see, we strongly encourage you to come and visit. By staying at one of the Shukubo or Saikan, you can directly contribute to the local Dewa Sanzan community. In addition, there are a variety of activities, such as the Yamabushido programs, or other Megurun programs. Your participation on these programs not only encourage your spiritual rebirth, but also contribute directly to the local economy.

In essence, all these efforts contribute to the sustainable development of the Dewa Sanzan. Proceeds go towards things such as the maintenance of Mt. Haguro’s cedar forest, or Dewa Sanzan Shrine’s roof. Before your visit, be sure to get in touch at the bottom of the page. We are here to ensure you make the most of your trip to the Dewa Sanzan.


Tim from

Timothy Bunting


Tim Bunting is a Dewa Sanzan Shrine Yamabushi with over 10 years’ experience living beneath the three mystical peaks. He is a self-professed Dewa Sanzan nerd, and is currently working on the Yamabushido project and Dewa Sanzan Monzenmachi Project with Megurun Inc. His roles including assisting in Yamabushi trainings, translating, interpreting, and curating

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Also check these out:

The Shrine Gates of Mt. Yudono of the Dewa Sanzan in Autumn

Why to Add The Dewa Sanzan to Your Bucket List 

Channel Matsuo Basho on the Dewa Sanzan 

Dewa Sanzan Accommodation: Daishinbo Pilgrim Lodge on Mt. Haguro

Shukubo Pilgrim Lodges on Haguro-san 

Mt. Haguro

Mt. Gassan

Mt. Yudono

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