Famous sightseeing spots around Tokyo include Kamakura and Hakone in Kanagawa Prefecture, and Nikko in Tochigi Prefecture.
Among them, Nikko has shrines and temples that represent Japan as World Heritage Sites. Also, from the middle of the Meiji era to the beginning of the Showa era, many villas for foreigners, including embassies from various countries, were built, and there is a beautiful lakeside that was crowded as an international summer resort.
On this page, we will introduce attractive sightseeing spots in Tochigi that you should definitely add to your itinerary when you come to Tokyo.
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Outline of Tochigi
Tochigi Prefecture is located in the northwestern part of Tokyo, in the northern part of the Kanto region. It is an inland prefecture that does not face the sea.
Shinkansen is recommended as a means of access from Tokyo. Shinkansen is a convenient and fast way to travel from Tokyo to Tochigi Prefecture.
For example, take the Shinkansen from Tokyo Station to Utsunomiya Station, transfer to a local train at Utsunomiya, and get to Nikko Station in about 2 hours. In addition to Shinkansen, there are other options such as limited express trains. (From Nikko Station, we recommend taking a bus that tours world heritage sites such as Nikko Toshogu Shrine. Please check here for details.)
However, if you go to Nikko by train, you will definitely need to change trains. If transfer is troublesome, express bus is convenient. Please check the official website of Tohoku Express Bus for highway buses to Nikko.
The must-see spots in Tochigi Prefecture are Nikko Toshogu Shrine, Lake Chuzenji, and Ashikaga Flower Park, which will be introduced in the following articles.
In addition to these, Tochigi Prefecture has a lot of attractions that I want you to experience.
Tochigi is also known for its hot springs, and Kinugawa Onsen is one of its representatives. You can soak in mineral-rich hot water and enjoy the elegant scenery of the Kinugawa River.
Nasu Highland Park is an amusement park full of rides and attractions that can be enjoyed by people of all ages, such as roller coasters and Ferris wheels. It also has beautiful gardens and a zoo, making it a great place for a family day out.
Tochigi has some of Japan’s most famous gyoza restaurants. If you want to taste it, Utsunomiya is recommended. There are countless dumpling shops, each with their own recipe and style.
Tochigi is also known for producing delicious strawberries, and you can enjoy strawberry picking at many farms in the prefecture. Especially in winter, when strawberries are in season, it is a fun and delicious activity that can be enjoyed by people of all ages.
In addition, the theme park “Edo Wonderland Nikko Edomura” that reproduces the atmosphere of Japan in the Edo period is also famous. Dressed in traditional costumes, you can watch samurai sword fights and ninja demonstrations, and explore replica buildings from the Edo period.
These are just a few of Tochigi’s attractions. Please refer to the following when planning what to do in Tochigi Prefecture.
Nikko Toshogu Shrine (Nikko city)
When I think of the finest traditional buildings near Tokyo, the Nikko Toshogu Shrine comes to mind first. If you are staying in Tokyo, Nikko Toshogu Shrine is a must-see.
Nikko Toshogu Shrine is one of Japan’s World Heritage Sites. The shrine is known for its beautiful architecture and intricate carvings of animals and mythical creatures such as dragons and phoenixes. Marvel at the intricate carvings and decorations, including the famous sleeping cats and three monkeys. Also, there are many beautiful trees and gardens around the shrine as well as the shrine itself.
Its beauty is comparable to Kyoto’s Kinkakuji.
Nikko is a picturesque city known for its beautiful nature and rich cultural heritage. In addition to the famous Nikko Toshogu Shrine, there are other sightseeing spots in Nikko that foreign tourists can enjoy.
Here are some recommended spots in Nikko that you should definitely visit.
Lake Chuzenji: A beautiful lake created by a volcanic eruption over 20,000 years ago, surrounded by lush forests and mountains. Visitors can boat on the lake, hike the nearby trails, or simply enjoy the tranquil scenery.
Kegon Falls: One of Japan’s most famous waterfalls, Kegon Falls is a must-see attraction in Nikko. The 97-meter-tall waterfall is surrounded by dense forest, and visitors can take a lift to an observation deck for breathtaking views.
Shinkyo: This iconic red bridge marks the entrance to Nikko Sanctuary and is said to be one of the most beautiful bridges in Japan. It is also a symbol of good luck, and you can buy amulets and souvenirs at nearby shops.
Nikko is a charming city with a lot to offer. From natural beauty to cultural attractions to delicious food, this lovely destination has something for everyone.
Ashikaga Flower Park (Ashikaga city)
From late April to early May, when the cherry blossoms have finished blooming, wisteria flowers are at their peak in Japan. Ashikaga Flower Park is the flower park with the most wisteria flowers in Japan. This park is famous for its stunning wisteria flowers, which bloom in spring and create a magical purple canopy. Visitors can stroll through the park and enjoy the fragrant blossoms, which are illuminated at night for a truly unforgettable experience.
Thank you for reading to the end.
Now, let’s plan to make your vacation in Japan the best experience ever!