Kii Mountains

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Kii Mountains
Highest point
Peak Mount Hakken (Nara Prefecture)
Elevation 1,914.6 m (6,281 ft)
Coordinates 34°10′25″N 135°54′27″E / 34.17361°N 135.90750°E / 34.17361; 135.90750Coordinates: 34°10′25″N 135°54′27″E / 34.17361°N 135.90750°E / 34.17361; 135.90750
Native name 紀伊山地 Kii Sanchi
Country Japan
States Mie Prefecture, Nara Prefecture and Wakayama Prefecture
Region Kansai region
Orogeny island arc

Kii Mountains (紀伊山地 Kii Sanchi?) is a mountainous region covering most of the Kii Peninsula. They lie south of the Japan Median Tectonic Line (MTL) in Wakayama, Nara, and Mie prefectures. The mountains are arranged roughly northeast to southwest.


During the Heian period, Shugendō flourished in these mountains. In 2004 it became part of a UNESCO World Cultural and Natural Heritage site, under the name "Sacred Sites and Pilgrimage Routes in the Kii Mountain Range"[1][2]


The highest peak is Hakkenzan 1,914.6 metres (6,281 ft) in the Ōmine Mountains. Other peaks in the central group are Mount Shakka(1800m) and Mount Sanjō (1719m). To the East in the Daikō Mountains is Mount Ōdaigahara (1695m). In the South is Mount Daitō 大塔山(1122m). The Obako Mountains separate Nara Prefecture from Wakayama Prefecture.[3]

Yoshino-Kumano National Park is located in the Kii Mountains.


Along with the Shikoku Mountains, the Kii Mountains form the outer arc of the Southwestern Japan Arc. The mountains are mostly domed upthrusts of sedimentary rock from the Cretaceous and Lower Miocene.[4]