Extremely Refreshing! 8 Recommended Waterfalls in Japan from North to South
Japan is a rainy country, and has many waterfalls. Why not enjoy the thrilling sight of some waterfalls and relax using their natural power? Here are 8 great waterfalls throughout Japan to consider.
1. Sakura Falls (Hokkaido)
This is a 3.7m tall waterfall that was created back when this area was actually covered with sea water, and the rock crumbled away.
Other than the beautiful cherry blossoms (sakura) in the spring, between early June and early August you can see masu salmon jumping their way up the waterfall. Masu salmon go down the river to the ocean, grow, and then come back up to their birthplace to lay eggs. It's said that every year around 3,000 fish return to their birthplace, so you can see the strong life force propelling them.
2. Shomyo Falls (Toyama)
This is a famous waterfall in Toyama that is also the waterfall with the biggest drop in Japan. It's roughly 350m, a strong drop that sends up a constant mist! It's an impressive sight to enjoy. Also, in the spring where the snow melts and sends a large rush of water down the fall, when there's more water than usual, smaller waterfalls will appear around the main fall. It's a rare sight and as a result this waterfall has become popular since people try to go see it.
3. Fukuroda Falls (Ibaraki)
Fukuroda Falls in Ibaraki is one of Japan's three most famous waterfalls. It has a height of 120m and a width of 73m, and since the huge rock wall it falls over is split into four steps, it's also called the "Yodo no Taki" ("the four step falls"). The lines of water that fall down the stone look like white threads sometimes, yet sometimes it's so strong it creates mist, so the different ways this waterfall looks is one of its charms.
Waterfall viewing facility (Fukuroda Falls Tunnel): 300 JPY for adults over 15, 150 JPY for children (both incl. tax)
4. Kegon Falls (Tochigi)
Nikko has many waterfalls, but the most famous is Kegon Falls. You can see the impressive sight of the water from Lake Chuzenji fall a straight drop of 97m down. From the observation deck that can be reached by elevator, you can feel the spray from the water and feel the intensity up close! You can enjoy the thrilling experience of the roaring sound and the feel of the water.
Round trip on the elevator: 550 yen for adults, 330 yen for children (incl. tax)
5. Shiraito Falls (Shizuoka)
Shiraito Falls is designated both as a national place of scenic beauty and also a natural monument. It has a width of 150m and a height of 20m, and it falls over the curved precipice as though it were covering it. It's made up of a few hundred falls of differing sizes, so it looks like a bunch of white silk threads, making it a graceful sight. Most of the water is spring water from Mt. Fuji.
6. Nachi Falls (Wakayama)
Nachi Falls is another one of Japan's top 3 waterfalls. It has been the object of worship of Hiro Shrine since ancient times, so it is revered and has a very spiritual atmosphere. It is 133m tall, about 13m wide, and the plunge pool is 10m deep. At the "Otaki Uganju," where you can look at the waterfall nearby, you can physically experience the impressive sight.
Entrance to the Otaki Uganju: 300 JPY for adults, 200 JPY for children (incl. tax)
7. Okono Falls (Kagoshima)
Okono Falls is on Yakushima, an island that is also a World Heritage Site. Yakushima has a few falls, but Okono Falls is considered one of Japan's top 100 waterfalls because it is one of the largest in both water volume and scale. It's Kyushu's tallest waterfall at 88m, and the force with which the water falls and throws up spray is dynamic! You can walk right down to the pool and physically feel the impressive force from up close.
8. Pinaisara Falls (Okinawa)
Pinaisara Falls is Okinawa's tallest waterfall at 55m. "Pinai" means "beard" and "sara" means "something that has fallen down" in the local dialect, and as the name implies, the waterfall looks like an old man's white beard. You can see it distantly from the side of the prefectural road known as Funaura Marine Road, but if you want to see it up close, you'll have to participate in a canoe or trekking tour.
*Time needed and fees depend on the tour company.
Japanese waterfalls run the gamut from being spiritual to stunning. Please experience the refreshing splendor of nature.
*Please note that the information in this article is from the time of writing or publication and may differ from the latest information.
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