Offering a wide range of splendid sceneries such as blooming glens, cozy river banks, graceful waterfalls and traditional villages, the area known as Oku Yamanaka is the perfect place for hiking. Those who enjoy driving their cars or riding their bikes on narrow curving mountain roads will also be delighted as long as enough caution is observed. Please note that due to heavy snowing expectations, the roads are usually closed in winter.
JR Kaga Onsen Station
※Stroll and Stay at Yamanaka Onsen
Depart from Yamanaka Onsen at morning
An atelier and shop located on the heights of Yamanaka Onsen heading towards the mountains. Besides attending a Maki-e painting workshop, visitors wishing only to take a look are most welcome.
Located on the heights of Yamanaka Onsen, the Sugawa Shrine is famous for its impressively large red cedar trees. One of them is being estimated to be over 2,300 years old and was particularly praised by a former Japanese monarch and is thus famous in the country as “the emperor’s cedar”.
Across the road in front of the Sugawa Shrine, this tiny teahouse proposes delicious “kusa dango” (grass dumplings).
This suspension bridge is in the vicinity of Wagatani Dam and serves as the entrypoint to the hiking path that leads to Mount Fujishagadake, famous for its fields of rhododendron flowers.
Visitors come here in the spring to enjoy the blossoming of the cherry trees that cover the banks halfway between both dams, and in the autumn to see the mountain shed its layer of green for a vivid coat of red, yellow, and orange.
A nice and cozy café in a renovated mountain warehouse surrounded by lush greeneries and tranquility only disturbed by the gentle stream that crosses the village of Suginomizu. Healthy food and sweets are prepared daily from the valley’s best seasonal fruits, rice and mountain ingredients such as burdock and green wasabi leaves. Both on-site consumption and take-out are available.
Located on the very heights of the Higashitani Valley, the picturesque village of Ozuchi gathers together a good number of traditional farmhouses. Generally inhabited from March up to the edge of December, when the harshness of winter’s heavy snowing drive the villagers out to settle downstream, Ozuchi seems to quietly remain frozen in time while giving us some nostalgic glimpses of what used to be the traditional Japanese lifestyle in remote mountainous areas.
*The road leading to Ozuchi is closed in wintertime.
JR Kaga Onsen Station