Mild climate and a
variety of natural features at the sweeping foot of Mt. Fuji,
the highest mountain in Japan
Shizuoka is located in the southeast of Central Japan and faces
the Pacific Ocean. Lying halfway between Tokyo and Osaka, it has
prospered for a long time as the meeting point of east and west, both
cultural and economical. Since the Fuji volcanic belt embracing such
volcanoes as Mt. Fuji, the highest mountain in Japan, Mt. Ashitaka and
Mt. Togasa, extends to the Izu-hanto Peninsula, Shizuoka has affluent
hot springs at Atami, Ito, Shuzen-ji and many other places, which
makes the prefecture one of major sightseeing and relaxation spots in
this country. What is more, Shizuoka boasts a variety of natural
features with the Suruga Bay, Enshu-nada (the Sea of Enshu) and Lake
Hamana-ko, rivers such as the Tenryu-gawa River and Oi-gawa River and
the plain spreading to the mouths of these rivers.
The city of Shizuoka, the center of local administration and economy,
was the capital town of a daimyo's fief where the Sunpu Castle of the
ruler Tokugawa Ieyasu, a warlord of the Sengoku (civil war) age,
stood. Besides the ruins of the castle, there are the Toro remains in
which you can see the reproductions of ancient houses and high-floored
granaries dating back to the 3rd to 4th centuries B.C. and the Kuno-san
Tosho-gu that has a Chinese style gate in the city.
West of the prefecture lies the city of Hamamatsu with the Kanzan-ji
hot spring long known as a celebrated moon-viewing spot. Every May,
the Nakata-jima dune, located in the outskirts of the city, is
thronged with fans and spectators visiting there for giant kite
About 1 hour to Shizuoka Station from Tokyo Station and about 2
hours from Shin-Osaka Station by JR Shinkansen Line.
Amagi-toge Pass and
Seven Waterfalls in Kawazu
An old mountain passage once taken up as the setting for a famous
Seven magnificent waterfalls aligned one after another
An old historical mountain pass crossing Amagi Pass, about 820m
above sea level at its peak, located in the center of Izu-hanto
Peninsula, leads through beautiful cedars and cypresses to the main
setting of the novel Izu no Odoriko (A Dancer in Izu) written by
Kawabata Yasunari, a Nobel prize laureate writer.
Yugashima-onsen Hot Spring, located at the junction where two
rivers, the Kano-gawa River and the Nekko-gawa River merge, is known
as a calm and composed spa which used to be cherished by many
writers, including Mr. Kawabata. The old passage through the
mountain pass of Izu, embraced by rich and deep forests, still
preserves the atmosphere of an older time. This is the site of the
number one waterfall in the Izu district, Joren-no-taki Fall, where
you can enjoy the magnificent view of massive volumes of water
falling from atop the soaring rock mountain.
The Kawazu-gawa River originates around Amagi Pass and flows through
the eastern part of the peninsula. There are seven waterfalls on its
upper course, known as the Kawazu Nanadaru, where you can walk
alongside the stream along a well set out promenade to appreciate
the series of waterfalls. They are named from the uppermost going
downstream, Kama-daru, Ebi-daru, Hebi-daru, Shokei-daru, Kani-daru,
Deai-daru and Oh-daru. The largest of all is Oh-daru, which measures
about 7m wide and 30m high.
About 65 Minutes from Tokyo Station to Mishima Station by JR
Tokaido Shinkansen Line or about 2 Hours 50 Minutes from Shin-Osaka
Station. From Mishima Station to Shuzenji Station by Izu-Hakone
Sunzu Line for about 33 Minutes. By Tokai bus, 25 Minutes from
Shuzenji to Yugashima, about 45 Minutes to Amagi pass, and about 65
Minutes to Kawazu-Nanadaru. Alternatively, you can take a train from
Tokyo to Kawazu Station for about 2 Hours 35 Minutes by JR Tokaido
Line, Ito Line and a Izukyuko Limited Express. From Kawazu Station
to Kawazu-Nanadaru by bus of Tokai Bus Co., about 25 Minutes and to
Amagi pass, about 45 Minutes.
Atami and Ito
An international hot spring resort with many museums
33,000 liters of hot spring water pours into the city every minute
Located at the root of the Izu-hanto Peninsula, Atami and Ito
that face Sagami Bay are areas with modern hotels, Japanese inns
with historical backgrounds and various amusement facilities
standing next to each other, forming one of the leading hot spring
resorts in Japan.
In Atami there is the famous Atami Hot Spring, Izu-yama-onsen Hot
Spring, Izu-Yugawara-onsen Hot Spring and Ajiro-onsen Hot Spring,
and at the heart of the Atami Hot Spring resort is the Oyu Geyser
that spouts up a huge quantity of hot water. Also, atop the hill on
the mountainside of Atami Station is the MOMA Museum that possesses
approximately 3,500 mainly oriental paintings and applied arts.
There is a Noh theater and a golden tearoom annexed on the compound
of the Museum.
In Ito, the Ito Hot Spring on the Matsu-kawa River that runs through
the city boasts of an abundant quantity of hot water that reaches
33,000 liters every minute, one of the largest in the Kanto region.
There are many museums of various sizes in the city: Ikeda 20th
Century Museum that specializes in arts created with the theme
"human" by artists of the 20th century; and a sound museum, the Izu
Music Box Museum, that exhibits antique music boxes from all over
the world as well as about 80 automated musical instruments.
About 40 minutes from Tokyo Station to Atami Station by JR
Tokaido Shinkansen Line. About 1 hour from Atami Station to Ito
Station by JR Ito Line. About 2 hours 15 minutes from Shin Osaka
Station to Atami Station by JR Tokaido Shinkansen Line.
The Atagawa Banana and Crocodile Park that has over 300 crocodiles
The zoo and bio park have over 500 wild animals and 600 birds
Higashi Izu facing the Sagami Sea has a mountain rising straight
out of the sea, and fishing ports such as Inatori, Hokkawa, and
Katase along its intricate coastline. It has abundant hot springs
and the Atagawa, Inatori, Katase and Okawa hot spring resorts have
The abundant and historical Atagawa-onsen Hot Spring is one of the
representative hot springs in Higashi Izu, said to have been found
by Dokan Ota, a warlord in the 15th century, while he was hunting.
It is a quiet hot spring resort that would take you less than an
hour to tour, and attracts visitors all-year-round.
In the area there is the Oyukake Benzaiten, a goddess believed to
bring good fortune if you make a wish while pouring hot water over
her statue, an outside bath, Isono-yu, from which you can enjoy the
view of the sea, and the Atagawa Banana and Crocodile Park that has
300 crocodiles of 27 species and Tropical Botanical Garden.
Inatori-onsen Hot Spring is a resort that covers the whole of
Inatori Point that sticks out in to the Pacific Ocean, and on a
sunny day you can see the distant Oshima Island, one of the seven
Izu Islands. There is a zoo and Izu Bio Park at Inatori Kogen, that
houses 500 wild animals of about 50 species and 600 birds of about
60 species kept loose.
About 2 hour 18 minutes from Tokyo Station to Izu Atagawa
Station by JR Izu Kyuko-sen Tokkyu Limited Express. About 3 hours
from Shin Osaka Station to Atami Station by JR Tokaido Shinkansen
Line, and about 50 minutes from Atami Station to Izu Atagawa Station
by Izu Kyuko Line Limited Express.
A salt lake with an intricate shoreline
A park with around 100,000 plants of 3,000 different species
Lake Hamana-ko is situated in the western part of Shizuoka, on
the border with Aichi. It used to be a fresh water lake, but the
earthquake that took place at the end of the 15th century cut the
sandbank that had closed the lake, connecting the lake to Enshu Nada
Sea. Later, in the 16th century, a tsunami broke and further opened
the mouth of the lake, creating a salt-water lake with an intricate
shoreline that is the current Lake Hamana-ko.
On the eastern shore of Lake Hamana-ko is a relatively new onsen
resort that was opened in the mid-20th century, Kanzanji-onsen Hot
Spring. It is surrounded on three sides by the lake and it can
boasts of the surrounding natural beauty as well as its own hotel
facilities, the largest on the lake.
The Hamamatsu City Flower Park has around 100,000 plants of
approximately 3,000 different species. It has a western garden with
a large fountain and a large, geometrically patterned flowerbed, as
well as a Japanese garden with pine forest and a stream. They are
popular among flower lovers throughout the seasons. There are also
other leisure facilities such as a theme park called Lake Hamana-ko
Pal Pal, complete with adventurous attractions.
The Lake Hamana-ko tour boat is also available allowing you to enjoy
the scenery from the surface of the lake. You can also enjoy the
scenery from mid air aboard the Kanzan-ji ropeway that connects Lake
Hamana-ko Pal Pal with the lookout at the peak of Mt. Okusa at 113
meters above sea level.
About 1 hour 25 minutes from Tokyo Station to Hamamatsu Station
by JR Tokaido Shinkansen Line, and about 1 hour 30 minutes from Shin
Osaka Station. About 40 minutes from Hamamatsu Station to
Kanzanji-onsen by bus.
The highest mountain in Japan with a beautiful conic shape - The
center of mountain worship since ancient days
Mt. Fuji is 3,776m high and is the highest mountain in Japan
situated at the border of southeastern Yamanashi and Shizuoka. With
its unrivaled magnificence and beautiful conic shape, Mt. Fuji has
often been selected as the subject for paintings and literature. It
is the world famous symbol of Japan. At the foot of Mt. Fuji, there
are the Five Lakes of Fuji, the Aoki-ga-hara Sea of Forest that is
dark even during the day, as well as Kitaguchi-Hongu Fuji-Sengen
Shrine that was constructed to calm the eruption of Mt. Fuji. The
Fire Festival of Yoshida, held at the end of the year as a ritual of
closing the climbing season for Mt. Fuji, is one of the three most
peculiar festivals in Japan.
Mt. Fuji has long been the center for the mountain worship of
ancient Japan. Today, it is a popular mountain to climb, and many
people climb Mt. Fuji to watch the sunrise called Goraiko from the
top. The access to the 5th station is well maintained, so you can go
up to this point and thoroughly enjoy the magnificence of Mt. Fuji
by just looking at the beautiful scenery close at hand without
endeavoring to climb all the way to the top.
Take JR Chuo Main Line from Shinjuku Station and transfer at
Otsuki Station. Take Fujikyu to Kawaguchi-ko Station. It takes 1
hour and 50 minutes. Take a bus from Kawaguchi-ko Station to the 5th
station of Mt. Fuji. It takes 50 minutes.
Enjoy the panoramic view of Mt. Fuji from Prefecture Natural Park -
The treasures of Edo period exhibited in the Kuno-zan Toshogu Museum
Nihon-daira is a hilly area located in the central part of
Shizuoka on the northern side of Mt.Udo-san facing the Izu-hanto
Peninsula with the Suruga Bay in between. From the area designated
as a Prefecture Natural Park you can enjoy the panoramic view of Mt.
Fuji and Suruga Bay.
On the southern foot of Mt. Udo-san is Mt. Kuno-zan, a mountain 270
meters above sea level. Kuno-zan Toshogu Shrine was built by the 2nd
Shogun Hidetada Tokugawa, the son of Ieyasu Tokugawa, in accordance
to Ieyasu's will. It is designated as an important cultural asset.
Ieyasu Tokugawa became the first shogun of the Tokugawa shogunate in
the early 17th century, and established the foundation of an
approximately 300-year-long stable Edo period. The treasures of that
period are stored and exhibited in the Kuno-zan Toshogu Museum.
Kuno-zan Toshogu and Nihon-daira are connected by a 1,065 meter
ropeway. You can gaze at Byobu-iwa, a chain of towering cliffs, and
Suruga Bay below you while listening to a guide on board explaining
about the history and geography of the area. In the vicinity are
cultural facilities like the Shizuoka Prefectural Museum with great
works of Monet and Gauguin, and Nihon-daira Museum.
About 1 hour from Tokyo Station to Shizuoka Station by JR
Tokaido Shinkansen Line, and about 2 hours from Shin Osaka Station.
About 40 minutes from Shizuoka Station to Nihon-daira by bus.
An intricate coastline that bears uniquely shaped rocks and small
islands - A cape that shines in sunset gold
Nishi Izu faces Suruga Bay on the west coast of the Izu-hanto
Peninsula, and consists of the plain area through which Nishina-gawa
River flows into Tago Port, and islands such as Sanshiro-jima. Along
the rocky coastline is Dogashima, a hot spring.
Approximately 2 km along Dogashima-kaigan Coast from Sebama is a
scenic place called Ajo Point, which represents Nishi Izu with a
cape of towering cliffs and intricate coastline that bears uniquely
shaped rocks and small islands. The Tonboro phenomenon induced by
the ebb and flow of the tide allows you to walk from Sehama-kaigan
Coast to Sanshiro-jima Island at the time of low tide. From
Dogashima-onsen, a popular marine leisure spot for swimming and
fishing, boat service is also available. You can go on a Dogashima
Island Cave Tour that would take you around islands such as Jya-jima
and Hie-shansho-jima as well as to the Tensodo Cave created from the
erosion by the sea.
On the northern side of the Dogashima-kaigan Coast is the Golden
Cape, named after its color at sunset. It is a cape created by
volcanic lava that slid down into the sea, and is known for its
masculine scenery of white wave breaking into towering cliffs.
About 1 hour 5 minutes from Tokyo Station to Mishima Station by
JR Tokaido Shinkansen Line, and about 2 hours 50 minutes from Shin
Osaka Station. About 33 minutes from Mishima Station to Shuzenji
Station by Izu Hakone Tetsudo Sunzu Line, and about 1 hour 5 minutes
from Shuzenji Station to Dogashima by bus.
The mountain railway winds its way downstream along precipitous
cliffs - The National Park is surrounded by mountains as tall as
Okuoi is located in the northern part of Shizuoka, where part of
the upstream region of the Oi-gawa River, which flows into the
Sagami Bay, is located. Surrounded by mountains as tall as 2,000
meters or so, the region has been appointed as a Prefectural
National Park, which preserves the entire region and keeps the rich
nature intact and safe from modern development.
The Ikawa Dam, which dams up the upper Oi-gawa River, and many other
artificial reservoirs, including Lake Ikawa-ko and Lake Hatanagi-ko,
provide scenic spots that attract many visitors during the high
season for the autumn maple trees. The Sessokyo Valley, which runs
about 13 km along the river and winds its way to the downstream
through the precipitous cliffs, compliments the surrounding virgin
forests. You can catch a glimpse of this beauty through the window
of the mountain railway, the Ikawa Line, which is the only
apt-system in this country. On the private company railway of the
Ikawa Line you can also enjoy the magnificent scenery of the
Sekinosawa rail bridge, which rises 100m above ground level, the
highest of all the private rail systems in Japan. Sessokyo-onsen Hot
Spring is situated between the Ikawa Dam and the downstream
Nagashima Dam, and Sumatakyo-onsen Hot Spring is spread over the
Sumatakyo Valley. A steam locomotive connects JR Kanaya Station and
Senzu; the entrance to Okuoi is about a 70-minute ride. The train
runs once a day. This steam locomotive train ride is particularly
popular among holidaymakers.
About 1 Hour ride from Tokyo Station to Shizuoka Station by JR
Tokaido Shinkansen Line or about 2 Hours from Shin-Osaka Station.
About 30 Minutes from Shizuoka Station to Kanaya Station by JR
Tokaido Line and about 70 Minutes ride from JR Kanaya Station to
Senzu Station by Oigawa Tetsudo Line.
Shimoda and Iro-zaki Point
Shimoda, the port that the American Fleet entered in the 19th
century - The tip of the peninsula is a scenic spot with its
lighthouse and cliffs
Shimoda is situated in the southeastern part of the Izu-hanto
Peninsula and is the core of Minami Izu. It is known as the city of
the port that the American Fleet called Kurofune, the Black Ship,
entered in the 19th century. They demanded trade with Japan, which
at that time was under a national isolation policy that cut off any
and all exchange with foreign countries. In the city is Ryosen-ji
Temple, at which the then US Naval Officer Perry and Daigaku
Hayashi, ambassador plenipotentiary, concluded the Japan-US
Friendship Treaty, and a sketch of the signing ceremony remains at
the Temple. You can enjoy the views of Shimoda from the sea aboard
the Sasukehana cruise boat that copied the design of the Kurofune,
as well as from Mt. Nesugata, which is said to resemble a woman
lying on her back. There is the Nesugta-yama ropeway service
available from Shimoda Station to the peak of Mt. Nesugata. Iro-zaki
Point, the southern most tip of the Izu-hanto Peninsula, is a scenic
spot with its lighthouse and towering cliffs, whose view you can
enjoy aboard a boat that tours around the capes. There is a huge
tropical botanical garden called the Jungle Park that you can visit
About 2 hours 40 minutes from Tokyo Station to Izukyu Shimoda
Station by JR Izu Kyuko Tokkyu (Limited Express). About 3 hours 20
minutes from Shin Osaka Station to Atami Station by JR Tokaido
Shinkansen Line, and about 1 hour 15 minutes from Atami Station to
Izukyu Shimoda Station by JR Ito Line Izukyu Limited Express.
Beloved place of many intellectuals - One of the major hot spring
resorts in the region
Shuzen-ji is located almost in the central part of the Izu-hanto
Peninsula, on the hill surrounded by Amagi, Sugumo and Daruma
mountains. It is one of the major hot spring resorts in Naka-izu
that developed along the Katsura-gawa River. Many scholars, artists
and writers loved the quiet atmosphere of Shuzen-ji-onsen Hot Spring
and spent much time here. There is a legend that Kobo-daishi, the
great monk of the 8th century, pounded a rock with his Buddhist
walking stick, tokko, to bring out hot spring water. Therefore the
spring was named Tokko-no-yu, or the Tokko hot spring, the
birthplace of Shuzen-ji-onsen Hot Spring. It is in the center of the
town and visitors are always welcome. Shuzen-ji Oku-no-in in the
beautiful temple of Shuzen-ji, erected by Kobo-daishi, is said to be
the place where Kobo-daishi had his training as a Buddhist monk in
Shuzen-ji Niji-no-sato is a theme park. Streets of 17th century
England are reproduced in the Igirisu-mura (English Village), and
workshops of Japanese traditional crafts line the town of Takumi-no-mura
(Skilled Artisan's Village). Flowers of the season are always
blooming in the park.
From Tokyo Station, 1 hour 5 minutes to Mishima Station by JR
Tokaido Shinkansen Line. From Shin-Osaka Station, 2 hours 50
minutes. From Mishima Station, 33 minutes by Izu-Hakone Tetsudo
Sunzu-sen Line to Shuzen-ji Station.