Arimine Lake is an artificial lake created by the construction of the Arimine Dam. The dam took five years to build. Efforts were taken to ensure that the natural surroundings were protected and the Arimine Forest Cultural Village was established. As a result, the area has remained unspoilt and has been designated as the Toyama Natural Park, National Rest Home and one of Japan's top 100 forests and water sources.
The fresh green and red leaves of the beech, oak and maple trees are wonderful. A sight of particular beauty is that of red leaves in autumn with the snow-covered Mt. Yakushi in the background. Wadagawa Valley, which lies between Komi and the dam, is so beautiful it will take your breath away. And it's not just the scenery that's so attractive, but the natural treasury of precious plants and wild birds.
The camping area at the shoreside is popular for people who like the outdoors.
Mt. Rokushosan is a 611-meter mountain located near Matsudaira Town, the birthplace of the Tokugawa clan, in Toyota City, Aichi Prefecture. It is counted as one of the three holy mountains in the Mikawa region. The mountain is covered with dense primary forest of conifer including huge cedar trees at the higher altitude and evergreen broad-leaved trees and deciduous trees at the lower altitude. Having an atmosphere of “Satoyama (nearby woodland),” the mountain is loved by local hikers as the place to contact with nature.
Mt. Rokushosan used to be a training ground for mountain practitioners of a temple founded in Mt. Ochizan by the priest Taicho Daishi. At the times when the temple was prosperous, the mountain trail with stone statues of Buddha was set out in this mountain.
At the foot of Mt. Rokushosan is Toyota City Outdoor Activity Center, which is equipped with a camping site, a picnic field and hiking courses for citizens.
Minamikitaura Coast, extending from Urashiro-machi to Kitaura-machi in Nobeoka City, Miyazaki Prefecture, is a beautiful ria coast facing the Hyuganada Sea. It is one of the main attractions of Nippo-Kaigan Quasi-National Park. As there area many capes and coves in the coastline and the offing is dotted with small islands, it is called “Matsushima of Hyuga.” The beach boasts its white sand and clear seawater.
As a suitable place for swimming and various outdoor activities such as camping, fishing and diving, it is crowded with a lot of tourists in summer. When it is cold in the morning, the surface of the sea is covered with mist and creates a mysterious atmosphere.
Enzu-no-wari is a traditional lunar new year festival held in Miyato, Matsushima of Miyagi Prefecture. The festival includes the 'tori-oi' in the Tsukishima area of Miyato. This is a festival to pray for a good harvest, good catch of fish, family safety and success in business. The Enzu-no-wari is designated as an important intangible cultural folk asset of Japan, since it is a valuable example of an historical festival held today.
Every year, for seven days from 11-16 January, boys from 2nd grade in elementary schools and 2nd grade in junior high schools of the Tsukishima area stay at a grotto under the Isuzu Shrine. The boys eat, sleep and go to school together, and live by themselves during this period.
On the night of the 14th, all the boys visit every house in the Tsukishima area. As they walk, they strike their pine staffs against the ground chanting 'enzu-no-wari, touryouba, kasurawatte, suotsukete, enzogashimasanagase' ('When you go after the vicious bird, crush its head, and send it away to the island of Ezo').
On the next day, they wake up early and make a fire from gathered wood, then chase the birds by calling 'Ho-i, Ho-i'. The boys roast their bellies with the smoke and pray for their good health that year.
By respectfully following tradition, these children will hand down a tradition to future generations.
The Atsuta River is a 30 km clear stream running through the Atsuta district in Ishikari City, Hokkaido. Flowing out of the Mashike mountains, the watershed areas are blessed with bountiful nature. In the upstream area, a beautiful gorge continues along the gentle stream.
The river is famous for salmon swimming up in the clear water. From September through October, when the leaves of the trees lining the gorge turn red and yellow, you can see a lot of salmon swaying their bodies and swimming near the surface of the river.
The river is also a famous canoeing spot. A lot of people stay at the nearby camping site and come to enjoy canoeing in this river. People enjoy going down the river, while salmon go up the river to produce new life.
Horoman Gorge located in the downstream of Horoman Dam in Samani Town on the south coast of Hokkaido is a 6 km beautiful gorge surrounded with an expanse of natural forests, where hardly any influence of human activities can be found. This exquisite gorge is a part of Hidaka-Sanmyaku-Erimo Quasi-National Park and selected as one of the eight scenic spots in Samani Town.
In the seasons of cherry blossom in spring, tender green in summer and crimson foliage in fall, you will be overwhelmed by the magnificent landscape created by the everlasting process of nature. The area around Horoman Dam is suitable for camping in summer.
Located in an unexplored land, the gorge used to be called Hidaka-Yabakei. However, the word refers to another scenic spot on the coastline now.
Lake Shirarutoro is located to the north of Kushiro Shitsugen Wetland, which is the largest wetland in Japan. The whole area covering Kushiro Shitsugen used to be the sea about 10,000 years ago, so Lake Shirarutoro is said to have been formed when the coastline retreated inward and the sea water remained in the depressed part of the land. It is a small lake with a circumference of 7.5 km and a maximum depth of 2.3 m. The lake is a wild bird paradise and a good bird watching spot, where various species of birds come flying from season to season. There are some points that do not freeze even in winter, at which swans, sea eagles, and red-crowned cranes come clustering. You can stay at the camping sites or pensions in the vicinity of the lake and enjoy viewing the natural features or wild bird around the lake to your heart’s content. The lake is also known for “Okami-watari (the sound of footsteps of the god).” If you are lucky enough, you may be able to the sound of the god’s footsteps, which resonant all over the lake. After listening to Okami-watari sounds, you can view the setting sun, bending your ear to the calls of red-crowned cranes. How about spending a winter day like this?
Rebunge Coast is an about 20 km-long scenic coast extending from Toyoura Town to the direction of Oshamanbe Town in Hokkaido. Several dozen meter high cliffs stretch along the coastline and the sea is dotted with uniquely shaped rocks and stones. “Rebunge” derives from an Ainu word “repun-ke-p,” meaning “a collapsed cape.”
The view of Mt. Usu and its surrounding area seen from the beach in adjacent Literature Monument Park is most splendid. Camping sites are open from the middle of July to the end of August. Swimming is not allowed but the sea is abundant in marine resources, which attract many anglers.