【Traveling Nikko 2/2】Travel Nikko's Beautiful Nature 🌻
Excellent and popular Nikko spots; Irohazaka Slope, Akechidaira Plateau, British Embassy Villa, Italian Embassy Villa, Okunikko Yumoto-onsen Hot Springs, Senjogahara, Lake Chuzenji
Many people go to Nikko for two reasons, either to visit the World Heritage Sites, or to explore Nikko's beautiful nature! We did both! For the second half of the trip, we went all around to see some of the most beautiful spots in Nikko during the fall🍁
We were on our way to Akechidaira Plateau
and drove through Irohazaka Slope.
This loopy road connects the lower part of Nikko
to its mountain areas.
A little fun fact!
The first three syllables of the Japanese alphabet used to be "i,ro,ha" (now is "a,i,u,e,o").
There are 48 syllables total in the Japanese alphabet,
and 48 hairpin turns on the slope,
so Irohazaka ("zaka" means "slope") was named to match!
⓶ Akechidaira Plateau (明智平)
Near the top of Irohazaka Slope is this beauty, Akechidaira Plateau!
This is one place many tourists know about, and it's particularly popular during the fall with all the multicolored autumn leaves. Google Maps
- The best way to get to the observation platform is by the Akechidaira Ropeway.
- There you get the most beautiful panoramic view of great scenes like Chuzenji Lake, Kegon Falls, and Mt. Nantaisan.
The Kegon Falls is a stunning waterfall at a height of 97m (326ft)
and is ranked in the three great falls of Japan.
The other two waterfalls are:
・Nachi Falls (那智大滝) in Wakayama prefecture, 133m (436ft) high.
・Fukuroda Falls (袋田の滝) in Ibaraki prefecture, 120m (400ft) high.
The water is from Lake Chuzenji,
and you can see it from both a free or paid observation deck
(the paid platform is more at the base of the waterfall).
There is an elevator to take you to the observation deck,
however it's not free.
Or you can look at it from the Akechidaira Observatory
at the top of Akechidaira Plateau~
⓸ British Embassy Villa Memorial Park (英国大使館別荘記念公園)
Opened to the public in 2014, the British Embassy Villa in Nikko was built by British diplomat at the time in the Meiji era (year 1872). Google Maps
- Super stylish villa surrounded by autumn leaves
- The two story structure mainly consists of exhibit rooms, but what's the highlight of the villa is its view of Lake Chuzenji.
- View of Lake Chuzenji
- You can get a great view and picture of the lake from a different angle!
- Just look at that view!
- It wasn't uncommon for foreign embassies to build lovely villas along the lake, and we can totally understand why they'd want to!
⓹ Italian Embassy Villa Memorial Park (イタリア使館別荘記念公園) Google Maps
- The designer Antonin Raymon, is the same man who designed the Imperial Hotel in Tokyo.
- Similar to the British villa, except the designer was a man from the Czech Republic.
- Love how cute the set up is!
- The structures inside of the villa were constructed in 1928 and were used by successive ambassadors until 1997.
- You can buy a ticket that allows you to go to both villas for 300yen!
- You can expect beauty and a cosy feeling💓
- Here is a 988 acre (400hectare) field/hiking spot that is said to be one of Nikko's best place to see the leaves change in the fall.
- It's a part of Nikko Park, so you are sure to see lots of wild animals and nature. Senjogahara is so beautiful! There are plenty of hiking trails or you can make your own!
- Okunikko is a little area of about 15 spa facilities (hotel, ryokan, etc) located on the lakeside of Lake Yuno (湯ノ湖). The moment you get here you can smell the sulfur in the air!
- A lot of the area have become drylands unfortunately, so the source of the hot springs is protected by little huts.
- Despite its somewhat harsh smell, the water is super a milky white and is said to make your skin lovely and smooth~
The Shinkyo Bride (神橋) is a part of the Futarasan Shrine
and is ranked as one of Japan's most beautiful bridges!
💗We'd have to agree💗
- Nikko's 3 wise monkey-yaki (三猿焼き; sanzaru yaki)
- Nikko's specialty tofu skin (yuba; 湯葉)
If you'd like to check out the first half of our Nikko travel,
you can check it by clicking on the link below.
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