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5 Picturesque Rainy Season Destinations in Japan

福島

Written by Salvo

2022.06.22

Sparkling rain drops can make many destinations around Japan look spectacular. From gorgeous hydrangeas to lush greenery, the scenery is enhanced and made better during the rainy season. Here are five of the best destinations you must check out!

Witness Nature's Beauty Enhanced by the Rain

5 Picturesque Rainy Season Destinations in Japan

Japan's rainy season may be associated with consecutive days of cloudy weather and rainfall. The truth is that many nature-rich areas look magnificent during this season! The beauty of the vivid green moss is enhanced by the rain, and we shouldn't forget the gorgeous hydrangeas that bloom during this time of the year.

We've selected five places in Japan that are definitely worth visiting during the rainy season.

1. Yakushima Island in Kagoshima Prefecture

5 of the Best Rainy Season Destinations - As Curated by MATCHA!

Photo by Pixta
Covered in lush greenery and moss, Yakushima is a picturesque island accessed by a ferry off the coast of Kagoshima Prefecture. Widely considered the inspiration behind Studio Ghibli's "Princess Mononoke," the ancient forests of hemlock and cedar are thoroughly enhanced by the addition of rain and dew.

Visitors can enjoy scenic hikes through gorgeous valleys and forested areas including the Shiratani Unsui Gorge. The main attraction of this world heritage site is the Jomonsugi, a giant cedar tree estimated to be between 2000 and 7200 years old.

It is part of a collection of trees in the national park that are uniquely shaped and possess exquisite natural and artistic beauty.

2. Hakone Tozan Railway in Kanagawa Prefecture

5 of the Best Rainy Season Destinations - As Curated by MATCHA!

Photo by Pixta

From the end of June to July, the Hakone Tozan Railway is home to mountainside vistas that are covered in vivid hydrangea flowers making it the perfect rainy season destination for visitors going to Hakone.

The train line takes on the nickname "the Hydrangea Train" during this time for the endless numbers of hydrangeas in all colors that bloom at stations, along mountain passes, and past key sections of the track.

We recommend stopping by Hakone Yumoto, Tonosawa, and Miyanoshita stations to get some of the most spectacular images that combine the vivid red of the train cars with the hydrangea scenery.

3. Takachiho Gorge in Miyazaki Prefecture

5 of the Best Rainy Season Destinations - As Curated by MATCHA!

Photo by Pixta
Picture a leisurely kayak through an ancient volcanic gorge and rainbows forming in the mists of the waterfalls that surround you. This is the scenery that awaits at Takachiho Gorge in Miyazaki.

Formed over 100,000 years ago the gorge was carved out by volcanic forces and left in a lush green state. The highlights of any trip to the gorge are the waterfalls that dot the landscape.

Visitors can rent a boat to view the falls up close or walk along the one-kilometer paved path that takes them along the gorge perimeter and up to Takachiho Shrine. Legend has it that this shrine is home to the cave where the sun goddess Amaterasu hid after being upset by her brother.

4. Minamisawa Ajisai Mountain in Western Tokyo

5 of the Best Rainy Season Destinations - As Curated by MATCHA!

Between the lush towering cedar groves, this mountainside in western Tokyo is covered in hydrangeas of all shades and sizes. Visitors can wander through dozens of mountain trails that are marked with quaint little signs in English and Japanese.

Minamisawa is a personal labor of love for Chuichi Minamisawa who began planting hydrangeas along a path from his home to the cemetery that he used to visit. Family and visitors loved the addition of hydrangeas and he has been adding to the mountainside more and more ever since.

The park is only open during the hydrangea season from mid-June to early July. Opening times may vary so please check out the official website for details. A small entrance fee of 500 yen for adults and 300 yen for children helps with the upkeep and maintenance of this beautiful area.

5. Mimurotoji Temple in Kyoto Prefecture

5 of the Best Rainy Season Destinations - As Curated by MATCHA!

Photo by Pixta

Mimurotoji is a nature lover's paradise bursting with color and over 1200 years of history located in the south-eastern city of Uji. The temple boasts over 50 varieties of hydrangeas in a path that stretches from the gates to the stairs of the main hall.

This is one of the best spots to view hydrangeas in western Japan but also happens to be brimming with history. Established in 770, the temple has seen the coming and going of emperors, warlords, and ordinary visitors.

A trip through Uji would not be complete without some stops to enjoy their famous matcha tea. Visitors can also plan a tandem visit to Byodoin, the Phoenix Hall, which is famous for being on the back of the 10 yen coin.

Enjoy Exploring Japan During the Rainy Season!

If you travel around Japan during the rainy season, please take care and watch your step as the ground might get slippery. Otherwise, try to enjoy the seasonal highlights and treats to the fullest!

The information presented in this article is based on the time it was written. Note that there may be changes in the merchandise, services, and prices that have occurred after this article was published. Please contact the facility or facilities in this article directly before visiting.