If you’ve seen the Studio Ghibli anime, you are certainly familiar with Totoro. Did you know there are several trees in Japan that resemble the iconic character?
Located in the village of Sakegawa in Yamagata Prefecture, the above tree is nicknamed “The Totoro Tree” (トトロの木 or Totoro no Ki). It’s a cedar tree that is apparently over 1000 years old.
The legend goes that if couples visit the tree, which is officially known as “kosugi no ohsugi” (giant cedar tree of Magarigawa), and hold hands underneath it, they will have a child.
Here’s a look inside the foliage, so you can see how amazing the Totoro tree is.
There’s another Totoro tree in Yamagata Prefecture, but it’s located in Yonezawa City. Called “Totoro’s Woods” (トトロの森 or Totoro no Mori), this isn’t a single tree, but a few Japanese cedars and a broadleaf tree. The result is another leafy green Totoro.
At the base of this Totoro, there’s even a Shinto shrine.