Mt. Himetsugi in Sagamihara City, Kanagawa Prefecture is a mountain with an altitude of 1433 m above sea level. This mountain is on the route of Tokai Shizen Hodo (the Tokai Nature Path) and is the highest peak on the trail from Aonohara in Tsukui-cho through the mountains of Yakeyama and Kibigarayama to Inukoe Pass.
It is said that the name “Hime-tsugi” is derived from the story that once upon a time a daughter of a samurai, Oyamade Hachizaemon, who had fought on the Takeda forces and was defeated in the Battle of Tenmokusan, escaped from the soldiers of the Nobunaga and Ieyasu’s forces and committed suicide by stabbing a dagger into the throat in this mountain. Since then people called this mountain “Hime-tsuki (literally meaning “stabbing of a highborn girl”), which has been corrupted into “Himetsugi.”
The summit of Mt. Himetsugi has a bright and refreshing atmosphere, where you can command a fine view of Mt. Fuji and Lake Miyagase. The larch forest of this mountain is selected as one of Kanagawa’s 50 Excellent Forests. It provides hikers with fresh green in spring through summer and crimson foliage in fall.
The Kakita River, a tributary of the Kano River, flows in a southerly direction in the centre of Shimizu Town in Shizuoka Prefecture. This river rises about 40 km away from the southeastern base of Mt. Fuji and fed by springs from the underground water table which is maintained by rain and melting snow that was discharged from Mt. Fuji into Mishima Stream of lava formed about 8,500 years ago.
There are several dozen springs which supply the Kakita River with 1 million tons of water each day. The water temperature in the Kakita River is about 15℃ throughout the year. The quality of the spring water is extremely good and it is called “the Last Clear Stream in Japan” or “the Finest Spring Water in the Orient.” It is counted as one of Japan’s 100 Fine Waters selected by the Ministry of Environment.
In 1986, Shimizu Town built the Kakita River Park, where visitors can see the water springs all through the year from the observatory deck.
Cape Koganezaki is a scenic spot in Ugusu in Nishiizu Town, Shizuoka Prefecture. It features the rugged surface of the cliff, which was formed by the volcanic fluid from Mt. Nekko flowing down into Sagami Bay.
Cape Koganezaki is known for its magnificent view of the ocean and the beautiful sunset. As the name “Koganezaki (the gold cape)” implies, the cliffs shine gold at the sunset. This is because weathered andesite was uniquely altered into yellowish brown propylite, which is prefecturally designated as a natural monument.
Cape Koganezaki is full of charms including flowers that come into bloom from spring through fall, the view of Mt. Fuji on a fine day, the stone monument in memory of Yukio Mishima, the fine promenade and colonies of wild plants.
Cape Koganezaki in Ugusu in Nishiizu Town, Shizuoka Prefecture、is known for its magnificent view of the ocean and the beautiful sunset. The cliffs shine gold at the sunset because weathered andesite was uniquely altered into yellowish brown propylite, which is prefecturally designated as a natural monument.
The whole part of the cape is designated as a public park named Koganezaki Park, where the promenade, the turf field and the observatory are set out among naturally grown pine trees. In Collection Garden, which is a 17 hectare botanical garden, visitors can enjoy viewing various flowers from spring through fall.
From the middle of February to the beginning of April, as many as 15 species of cherry trees come into bloom. Koganezaki Cherry Festival is held on the 1st Sunday every year.
Osezaki in Nishiura Enashi in Numazu City in Shizuoka Prefecture is a 1-kilometer cape protruding into Suruga Bay on the west side of Izu Peninsula. It is traditionally called Biwashima (Biwa Island) because, according to the story handed down in this area, it was originally an island formed by the elevation of the sea bottom due to a big earthquake that occurred in 684. The island was named Biwashima but it was connected to the main land by the sand bar formed in the later times.
Located in the innermost part of Suruga Bay, Osezaki has been a famous scenic spot to view Mt. Fuji across the ocean and has been visited by a lot of tourists all through the year.
With stabilized sea conditions, Osezaki is a treasure trove of nature, providing habitats for abundant variety of wildlife. It is famous as the northernmost wild boundary of Chinese bottle trees. Over 1,000-year-old wild Chinese bottle trees form a colony along the promenade on the open sea side of the cape. It is designated as a National Natural Monument. Osezaki is also an internationally well-known dive site.
Nichirinji Temple was established by Priest Kukai about 1300 years ago. He sculpted himself the image of Juichimen Kannon (eleven-headed Kannon) and placed it as the main object of worship. Then he lit a holy fire to pray for the national prosperity and rich harvest in the morning and prayed for the souls of the dead in the evening. The temple was flourished as the ascetic training center of the northern Kanto and the southern Tohoku regions. In 989, it was counted as the 21st temple of Bando Kannon Pilgrimage. In 1880, the temple buildings were destroyed by a mountain fire, but the image of Kannon miraculously escaped damage. In 1915, the present temple buildings were built at the site where Kannon had been placed. From the observatory to the left of the main hall, you can see Mt. Fuji on a fine day. If you drive up the mountain for about 5 minutes, you will reach Yamizo Mine Shrine, which is said to have been established by Yamato Takeru.
Tatara-numa is a pond in the border of Tatebayashi City and Ora-machi in Gunma Prefecture. Located at 20 m above sea level, it is a small pond with an area of about 80 ha and a circumference of 7 km. However, the pond is famous as the only place in the prefecture where swans can be seen flying. From November every year, swans come flying to this pond and reflect their elegant figures on the surface of the water.
Standing on the lakeside with a gentle wind blown from the nearby pine grove, visitors can forget the bustle of a big city. The pond aglow with the setting sun is especially beautiful. Lucky visitors can see Mt. Fiji in the sunglow.
The pier protruding over the water is crowded with angers for Japanese crucian carp and bass. In spring, wisteria on the 130 m wisteria trellis and 120 cherry trees bloom in Tatara-numa Park beside the pond.
Ukishima Benzaiten Temple, which was referred to in the Taiheiki, stands on the land protruding into the pond.
Rishiri Island is a circular island located to the west of Wakkanai City in north Hokkaido. Most part of the island is designated as a part of Rishiri-Rebun-Sarobetsu National Park. The word “Rishiri” comes from an Ainu word “ri-sir,” meaning “an island with a lofty mountain.” As its name shows, the island has a lofty mountain of Mt. Rishiri (1,721 m), which has a beautiful conical shape like Mt. Fuji. Being called “Rishiri Fuji,” it is the symbol of the island.
Rishiri Island is blessed with fishing grounds and ocean resources. Especially kelp taken from the sea around the island is famous all over the country as Rishiri Kelp. The island is also the treasure trove of alpine plants including many species peculiar to this island. With a lot of exquisite mountains, highlands, lakes and wetlands, Rishiri Island is a fascinating sightseeing spot.