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20 Finest Spots for Autumn in Japan (Fall Foliage Viewing)

A visit to Japan has nearly all the time been synonymous with iconic sights of sakura or cherry blossoms; in any case, hanami or cherry blossom viewing is a should for vacationers visiting in April. Nonetheless… there’s one thing to be mentioned about autumn in Japan, particularly with its spectacular fall foliage!

First issues first, pay attention to the interval from mid-September or October till December as a result of it’s famously referred to as koyo season — it’s the time when the climate is cooler and vibrant autumn foliage begins to disclose itself. From the deep pink Japanese maple leaves to the distinctive kusamomiji or pink autumn grass, there are tons of gorgeous spots you could take a look at.

Simply take be aware that the majority of those locations (particularly temples) shall be full of folks, however don’t let that truth cease you from taking the journey. In addition to, come nighttime, a number of the places will usually illuminate the autumn bushes for a wide ranging foliage view.

As of 2023, beneath is the foliage forecast map for Japan:

Supply: Japan Meteorological Company

Autumn in Japan: High Spots

» North of Tokyo

Daisetsuzan Nationwide Park

Photograph by: Shutterstock

Daisetsuzan Nationwide Park, situated in Hokkaido, is an unlimited expanse of pristine wilderness that stands because the nation’s largest nationwide park at 2,267.64 sq. kilometers. Identified for its dramatic landscapes, it options rugged mountain ranges, serene plateaus, and vibrant alpine forests, showcasing Japan’s unspoiled magnificence that’s nice for sightseeing — if not mountaineering!

In autumn, Daisetsuzan transforms right into a mesmerizing tapestry of fiery reds, good oranges, and golden yellows. To not point out, it’s a hotspot for leaf-peepers and nature lovers, because the koyo, or autumn colours, begin to seem earlier right here than wherever else in Japan.

TIP: Don’t overlook to drop by the Mikuni Cross (seen within the picture above).

  • Handle: Sounkyo, Kamikawa, Kamikawa District

Hitachi Facet Park

Photograph by: Shutterstock

This spot is an emblem of autumn in Japan, significantly within the autumn months! Miharashi Hill particularly turns into a surreal dream throughout this season, with its undulating panorama swathed within the deep reds of Kochia crops (often in full bloom in October).

This crimson blanket creates a stark but mesmerizing distinction to the park’s azure skies, inviting images lovers and nature lovers alike. Past this, the park unravels additional magnificence by its myriad gardens teeming with vibrant tulips and calming hues of lavender. Whereas Hitachi Seaside Park is famend for its huge fields of Child Blue Eyes, many guests are pleasantly shocked to find that the park presents an array of different floral spectacles, every including a singular contact to its breathtaking panorama.

  • Handle: 605-4 Mawatari Onuma, Hitachinaka

Irohazaka Route

Photograph by: Shutterstock

This scenic winding path is actually the embodiment of nature’s grandeur, significantly through the autumn months! With every flip and twist, the street reveals panoramic vistas of cascading hills drenched in a spectrum of fiery reds, radiant oranges, and golden yellows.

Acknowledged by many as essentially the most thrilling street to traverse in autumn, it doesn’t simply supply a journey from one level to a different however a voyage by nature’s beautiful autumnal show. It helps to notice that the downslope (1st Irohazaka), which has 28 curves, features a cease to see two waterfalls; whereas the upslope (2nd Irohazaka), which has 20 curves, has the Akechidaira Plateau on the prime that may give you spectacular views of the valley.

TIP: Throughout autumn, the inflow of holiday makers can prolong a typical 20-minute drive by Irohazaka Route to three to 4 hours! For a smoother expertise, think about reserving a tour on a weekday.

  • Handle: Hosoomachi, Nikko, 321-1445

Towada Lake

Photograph by: Shutterstock

Nestled within the serene confines of Aomori prefecture lies Towada Lake, the grandest crater lake in mainland Japan which is a good place to go to for autumn in Japan.

As autumn units in, the lake transforms right into a canvas painted with good hues of crimson, gold, and orange. Right here, you may embark on a scenic cruise, letting the mild waves information you alongside shores adorned with beech and maple bushes. However for many who are adventurous at coronary heart, tread the paths alongside the Oirase Stream, the place the colourful fall colours play backdrop to the stream’s fierce rapids and cascading waterfalls, making a mesmerizing mix of tranquility and uncooked nature.

  • Handle: 034-0301 Aomori-ken, Towada-shi

Naruko Gorge

Photograph by: Shutterstock

Reaching its vibrant peak from mid-October to early November, this iconic gorge comes alive as hues of gold, amber, and crimson drape its slopes.

Nonetheless, because of the influence of the 2011 earthquake, your entire gorge strolling path isn’t accessible. Nonetheless, guests can seize the gorge’s essence from the remainder home, providing iconic views of the bridge and surrounding magnificence — plus, a partial part of the path stays open for exploration. When you’ve soaked within the vistas, unwind in close by areas like Naruko Onsen, Higashi-Naruko, or Onikobe, every boasting distinctive onsen sizzling springs.

  • Handle: Narukoonsen, Ōsaki, Miyagi 989-6100

» In & Round Tokyo

Hamarikyu Gardens

Photograph by: Shutterstock

Hamarikyu Backyard, a tranquil oasis amidst Tokyo’s bustling cityscape, presents a fascinating autumnal retreat for almost anybody!

Because the season progresses, the backyard’s foliage dons a palette of vibrant reds, oranges, and gold, making it a perfect vacation spot for these searching for nature’s resplendent show within the coronary heart of the metropolis. However the magic doesn’t finish at sundown. As night descends, the bushes are bathed in a comfortable, ethereal glow, as illuminations forged their gentle upon the leaves, remodeling the backyard right into a luminous dreamscape. This mix of pure magnificence and clever lighting creates an ambiance of serene magnificence, making Hamarikyu Backyard a must-visit throughout Tokyo’s autumn nights.

  • Nearest Metro: Hama-Rikyū (Hama-rikyu Backyard) Station
  • Handle:  1-1 Hamarikyuteien, Chuo Metropolis, Tokyo

Kajika Bridge

Photograph by: Shutterstock

Kajika Bridge, gracefully arching over the waters of Ikaho Onsen, turns into a magical pathway throughout autumn in Japan. As you stroll throughout, let the colourful canvas of russet and amber leaves envelop you within the season’s embrace.

And naturally, the encircling onsen city, with its wealthy historical past, presents not simply scenic magnificence but in addition participating actions. Enjoyment of fruit-picking, savoring the recent flavors of the season, or embark on a mountaineering path, permitting nature to information your journey. For these searching for a chicken’s-eye view of Gunma’s fall splendor, the Ikaho ropeway awaits, whisking you to vantage factors the place your entire valley is painted in wealthy hues.

  • Handle: 590 Ikahomachi Ikaho, Shibukawa, Gunma

Lake Kawaguchi of Fuji 5 Lakes

Photograph by: Shutterstock

As essentially the most famend of the Fuji 5 Lakes, it presents gorgeous panoramic views the place the snow-capped peak of Mt. Fuji enhances the fiery hues of fall foliage. The annual Autumn Leaf Pageant is a spectacle to not be missed; because the solar units, the bushes are illuminated, enhancing the colourful reds, oranges, and yellows.

A spotlight of the area is the Maple Hall – a picturesque path lined with brilliantly-colored maple bushes that appear to set the place ablaze with their splendor. For these searching for that picture-perfect shot, you may attain this visible deal with by hopping onto the Kawaguchiko Sightseeing Bus (Crimson line) and alight on the Itchiku Kubota Artwork Museum bus cease.

The prime time to expertise this vibrant show is between early to mid-November. To keep away from the crowds, think about an early morning go to and even higher, an in a single day keep, guaranteeing each serene morning views and a glimpse of Mt. Fuji in its full glory.

Meiji Jingu Gaien

Hamarikyu Gardens

Nestled a stone’s throw away from Meiji Shrine, Meiji Jingu Gaien, or the Outer Backyard, stands as a testomony to nature’s grandeur within the coronary heart of Tokyo. The avenue, adorned with towering ginkgo bushes, transforms right into a golden hall throughout autumn, making it a prime contender for the perfect fall foliage spots in Japan.

Now, one of many issues you need to NOT miss out on whereas there’s the annual Jingu Gaien Ginkgo Pageant. Celebrated since 1997, guests not solely get to immerse themselves within the mesmerizing hues of the leaves but in addition revel within the vibrant ambiance dropped at life by avenue performers and an array of meals cubicles. (Often occurs from mid November to early December).

  • Nearest Metro: Sendagaya Station
  • Handle: 1-1 Kasumigaokamachi, Shinjuku Metropolis, Tokyo, Tokyo

Mount Nasu

Photograph by: Shutterstock

Mount Nasu, sometimes called Mount Chausu, stands majestically as one of many area’s outstanding lively volcanoes. To start out off your autumn in Japan expertise on an excellent be aware, embark on a memorable journey on the Nasu Ropeway, main you as much as the mountain’s Ninth Station – a major level on the mountaineering path.

For these contemplating a guided expertise, there’s a tour that not solely presents transportation to Mt. Nasu but in addition treats members to a buffet lunch and an entrancing go to to the famend Ashikaga Flower Park — and this park dazzles guests with its beautiful night time illuminations and vibrant flower displays!

Rikugien Backyard

Photograph by: Shutterstock

To really recognize Rikugien’s magnificence, allocate an unhurried afternoon autumn in Japan to meander by its scenic trails, punctuating your journey with tranquil moments at its conventional teahouses.

Highlights embrace the serene ambiance close to the Tsutsuji no Chaya teahouse stream, the picturesque allure across the Togetsukyo Bridge, and the panoramic vistas from the Fujishirotoge viewpoint. The backyard’s autumnal splendor often reaches its greatest from late November to early December, so take be aware!

  • Nearest Metro: Komagome Station
  • Handle: 6 Chome-16-3 Honkomagome, Bunkyo Metropolis, Tokyo

Shinjuku Gyoen

Hamarikyu Gardens

The park boasts 3 signature gardens, every providing a singular autumn in Japan expertise,

The Japanese Backyard dazzles with its fiery pink maple cover, portray a serene image harking back to conventional landscapes. In distinction, the British Backyard is a sea of golden splendor, due to its ginkgo bushes that shimmer within the gentle. However autumn isn’t nearly fiery hues; the French Backyard surprises with late-blooming roses, including a contact of romance to the autumn palette.

To really seize the essence of Shinjuku Gyoen, traversing by all three gardens is a should. So plan your go to between mid-October and mid-December to bask within the backyard’s full autumnal glory!

  • Nearest Metro: Shinjuku-sanchome Station
  • Handle: 1-1 Kasumigaokamachi, Shinjuku Metropolis, Tokyo, Tokyo

Ueno Park

Hamarikyu Gardens

Autumn in Japan’s Ueno isn’t just a visible deal with; it’s an expertise. In addition to marveling on the fall foliage, guests can discover the a number of museums housed inside the park, together with the Tokyo Nationwide Museum and the Ueno Royal Museum.

The park’s serene Shinobazu Pond additionally presents paddle boating amidst the lotus crops, and the Ueno Zoo supplies a pleasant encounter with various wildlife. Because the solar units, think about having fun with a leisurely boat experience or just sitting by the water, taking within the reflection of the colourful leaves.

  • Nearest Metro: Yushima Station
  • Handle: Uenokoen, Taito Metropolis, Tokyo

» South of Tokyo

Eikando Zenrinji Temple

Photograph by: Shutterstock

This serene temple, with its lovely pond backyard and timeless structure, mirrors the essence of Japan’s conventional magnificence in opposition to the colourful backdrop of autumn leaves. However the magic doesn’t finish with sundown.

As night descends, the temple grounds are illuminated, casting the bushes, pond, and constructions in an ethereal glow, turning the panorama right into a dreamy world straight out of a portray. This nightly illumination is an expertise in itself, because the shimmering reflections and shadows create a mystical ambiance.

  • Handle: 15 Chome-778 Honmachi, Higashiyama Ward, Kyoto

Houkyou-in Temple

Houkyo-In, a hidden gem within the cultural coronary heart of Kyoto, presents a serene escape, particularly through the autumn months.

Because the extra standard spots in Kyoto buzz with vacationers, Houkyo-In stays a tranquil oasis, the place the altering leaves could be admired in relative solitude. The temple grounds come alive with a burst of reds, oranges, and yellows, every leaf narrating its personal story of time.

  • Handle: Saga-shakado-monzen-minamichuin-cho 9 Kyoto Ukyo-ku, Kyoto

Korankei Valley

Photograph by: Shutterstock

With the serene Tomoe River reflecting the colourful cover, maple bushes numbering within the hundreds, flank the riverbanks and mountainsides, making a charming backdrop to this picturesque gorge.

Guests may also take pleasure in a myriad of actions right here! Embark on a tranquil boat experience alongside the Tomoe River, immersing your self within the surrounding magnificence. Wander alongside well-trodden paths, crossing the long-lasting pink Taigetsukyo Bridge, which presents among the best panoramic views of the valley. And as night approaches, the illuminations forged a magical glow on the bushes, creating an ethereal ambiance.

  • Handle: Iimori Asukecho, Toyota, Aichi

Minoo Park & Falls

Photograph by: Shutterstock

Tucked away from the bustling cityscape of Osaka, Minoo Park presents a serene escape and is refreshingly uncrowded.

An autumn go to reveals a canvas of vibrant hues, with crimson and gold leaves making a mesmerizing backdrop. To not point out, the centerpiece of this pure haven is the Minoo Falls, cascading gracefully and complementing the season’s magnificence. As you wander the park’s trails, don’t miss out on the distinctive culinary delight it presents: the momiji tempura. These battered and deep-fried maple leaves present a crunchy style of autumn, making your go to to Minoo Park a deal with for each the eyes and palate!

  • Handle: 1-18 Minookoen, Minoh, Osaka 

Nara Park

Photograph by: Shutterstock

As autumn descends, this well-known park is drenched in a riot of reds, oranges, and yellows, providing a picturesque backdrop to the tons of of docile deer that roam freely. These iconic residents, revered and guarded, are all the time looking forward to a biscuit and may even bow in gratitude!

Amidst this autumnal splendor, the majestic Todai-ji Temple stands tall, offering a serene setting that contrasts with the playful deers. For a postcard-perfect shot, place your self throughout the shimmering Daibutsu-Ike Pond, capturing the temple, fall foliage, and maybe a deer or two in a single body.

Sagano Romantic Practice

Photograph by: Shutterstock

Embark on a picturesque 25-minute journey across the Arashiyama district aboard the Sagano Romantic Practice for the perfect autumn in Japan expertise!

As you traverse landscapes awash in vibrant autumn hues, it’s clear why this route is a favourite, significantly amongst romantics. Expertise the district’s full splendor by reserving a tour now. In addition to, past the prepare experience, you may take pleasure in ample time to wander the long-lasting Togetsu Bridge and the mesmerizing Arashiyama bamboo forest. You’ll be able to even delight within the included Hozugawakudari River Boat Journey, stretching from Kameoka to Arashiyama.

  • Handle: Close to JR Saga-Arashiyama Station

Tofukuji Temple

Photograph by: Shutterstock

Established within the early Heian interval, this temple has lengthy been a revered place of worship and reflection. With sprawling grounds and iconic constructions, it showcases the perfect of Japanese temple structure.

Anyhow, autumn in Japan at Tofukuji Temple is nothing wanting magical. Guests are drawn to the Tsutenkyo Bridge for panoramic views over a valley of maples, whereas the Zen-inspired gardens present tranquil spots for reflection.

  • Handle: 15 Chome-778 Honmachi, Higashiyama Ward, Kyoto

» BONUS: Gown Up in a Kimono throughout Autumn in Japan

Elevate your autumn trip and images by draping your self in a conventional yukata or kimono! Rental outlets throughout Japan additionally cater to males and even the youthful ones — so sure, you may simply maintain a photograph shoot along with your family members.

For the perfect expertise, take a look at the vary of rental outlets everywhere in the nation through Klook: [click]. I guarantee you, your Instagram feed is about to turn into the envy of all!

• • •


As the colourful hues of autumn in Japan paint the panorama, every of those 20 spots certainly presents a singular tapestry of reds, oranges, and gold!

So whether or not you’re a photographer, traveler, or just somebody who appreciates nature’s artistry, these places promise unforgettable reminiscences. Go seize your digicam, a heat drink, and let the serene great thing about Japan’s autumn foliage captivate your coronary heart!

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