Tazawa lake in Akita prefecture is a popular energy spot among women for its link to beauty and romance. The reason for that is the lake’s attractiveness, as well as the legend of Lady Tatsuko. I will now introduce Tazawa lake for all the women who wish to become more beautiful or to find their dream partner, and are willing to travel a long way.
The legend of Lady Tatsuko is one of the three famous lake legends in Tohoku
Before introducing the magical spot Tazawa lake, I will first briefly tell you about the legend of Lady Tatsuko, which is one of the three lake legends in Tohoku region.
Once upon a time a very beautiful young lady named Tatsuko lived in a place called Kannarizawa. Tatsuko wanted to preserve her beauty eternally, therefore she secretly prayed to the Buddhist goddess Kannon every day and night. On the night when her wish was about to be fulfilled, Tatsuko was told that she has to cross over the northern mountain and drink from the spring source there. She did exactly as the goddess said and found the magical spring. Then she drank a bit of the water but suddenly felt a great thirst that became stronger and stronger the more she drank. Tatsuko continued drinking with all her energy and before she realized, she had turned into a large dragon. The mountain collapsed with a big rumble and a deep lake was formed. That is Tazawa lake, and Tatsuko is said to live there as a dragon.
An earlier legend tells about the hunter Hachirotaro who also turned into a dragon and lost a battle against a man named Nansonobo at Towada lake, subsequently becoming the creator of Hachirogata lagoon in Oga peninsula. This Hachirotaro heard about the beauty of Lady Tatsuko and went to Tazawa lake to meet her. The two became lovers, but then Nansonobo, who also heard about the lady’s beauty, came to the lake as well and began a new battle with Hachirotaro, this time for Tatsuko. The winner was Hachirotaro and every winter he travels from Hachirogata lagoon to Tazawa lake to be with his lady. According to local belief, the reason why the lake doesn’t freeze in the winter is because of their love. Now the lagoon does not exist anymore, which means that the two live together at Tazawa lake all year round…
Note: There is another article about the legend of Towada lake and the battle between Nansonobo and Hachirotaro. Please check the link in the memo below.
Tazawa lake is as beautiful as lady Tatsuko
Tazawa is the deepest lake in Japan: 423.4 meters. The depth cannot even be imagined. Since lady Tatsuko turned into a dragon and started living in the deep waters, the lake became magical and really beautiful. Because of its depth and the sunlight, the lake surface changes colors from blue to green. If you spend some relaxing time at the shores you will feel as if you’re absorbing the energy and beauty of lady Tatsuko.
I will try to explain why Tazawa is a magical spot related to beauty and romance from the perspective of “energy”. Even when one wants to find their dream partner, if one’s spirit is tired or not pure, the dreamy romance will not happen. However, the lake’s water has some powerful energy which purifies one’s spirit and heart. Unclear water sources should be avoided for they contain negative energy, but at beautiful places like Tazawa the purification is especially strong. This is very evident and naturally leads to being blessed with a happy romance. Access to Tazawa lake.
Public transport: Akita shinkansen, JR Tazawako line Tazawako station, Ugo Kotsu bus, get off at “Tazawako” bus stop Car: Tohoku highway, Morioka IC through route 46, route 341 for about 47 kilometers
Gozanoishi shrine of beauty and Ukigi (Kansagu) shrine of love
Gozanoishi shrine is located at the northern part of Tazawa lake and is believed to bring beauty to those who pray there. The enshrined deity is lady Tatsuko. There are items related to the legend, such as the “katagashira water spring” whose water Tatsuko drank before becoming a dragon, or the “kagamiishi” which reflected her beautiful image. The shrine is thought to be built during Muromachi period, and in 1650 the local Akita feudal lord Yoshitaka Satake took a rest there which resulted in changing the shrine’s name to Gozanoishi.
Ukigi shrine is a small shrine next to Tatsuko’s statue (on the photo above). Its name comes from deifying drifting large trees. It is unknown when the shrine was built, but in 1769 the haiku poet and Chinese scholar Soshu Masuda named it Kansagu. Local people however call it “Katajiri Myojin” and worship the creator of Tazawa lake lady Tatsuko as a deity of fishermen’s good catch. Also, this shrine is built at the place where Katajiri river starts flowing from Tazawa lake, and since that is the river which Hachirotaro used to come every year, it was believed that hearing him enter the lake would lead to death. Therefore in the past local people used to gather every year on November 9, when Hachirotaro was supposed to come, and partied all night so that they wouldn’t hear him. Since the shrine symbolizes the love of Tatsuko and Hachirotaro, it is well known as a place to pray for romance. (A bit of a personal story, but the author of this article also met her present husband one month after visiting that shrine)
Gozanoishi shrine JR Tazawako station, Ugo Kotsu bus, Tazawako Isshu line, get off at “Gozanoishi jinja mae” bus stop
Ukigi shrine JR Tazawako station, Ugo Kotsu bus, Tazawako Isshu line, get off at “Katajiri” bus stop
Conclusion about the magical spots in Tazawa lake
Every woman wishes to be beautiful and meet a dreamy romance. There is little doubt that the energy spots at Tazawa lake and its legend combine the two wishes together. Few buses go to Gozanoishi and Ukigi shrines and it is a little inconvenient to go there without a car, but no matter how far the distance is, it’s worth to take a relaxing trip to the magical spots.
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