Fukui's Instagrammable beauty spot! Soothe your spirits on the five sky terraces of Rainbow Line Summit Park
Rainbow Line Summit Park, on top of Mt. Baijodake at an altitude of 400 meters, straddles the towns of Wakasa and Mihama in Fukui Prefecture. Here, conceived as "Terraces in the Sky Floating over the Five Lakes of Mikata," five stylish areas opened in April 2020 to rave reviews, sparking a buzz on social media! The att.JAPAN editors went to see for ourselves the charms of this amazing place, so read on for the highlights!
If you're planning a trip to Rainbow Line Summit Park from Kyoto or Osaka, consider getting a Kansai-Hokuriku Area Pass! From Kyoto, ride the limited express Thunderbird for about an hour to Tsuruga Station, then hop on a local train to arrive at Mihama Station in 20 minutes. Pass holders save money since you can ride the limited express with no extra charge.
What are the Mikata Five Lakes?
Mikatagoko, meaning Mikata Five Lakes, is the popular name for the five lakes of Mikata, Suigetsu, Suga, Kugushi, and Hyuga, which sprawl over an area that includes the towns of Wakasa and Mihama in Fukui Prefecture. Differences in salinity and water depth create different shades of blue on the lake surfaces, a dynamic coloring that fascinate all who see it.
View from Rainbow Line Summit Park
The sky terrace of the Rainbow Line Summit Park offers a view that encompasses all five of the mysterious Mikata Lakes. The five blue hues of each of the Mikatagoko becomes seven subtly different shades when joined with the blue of the Sea of Japan and the cerulean sky above, inspiring the name "Rainbow Line." Buy a ticket at the Ticket Counter & Information Center near No. 1 parking lot and head to the summit by lift or cable car!
Rainbow Line Summit Park lift boarding platform
View from the lift
Within the park, one particularly popular spot stands out for its round sofa terrace. Stretching out on the sofa with a view of the Mikata Five Lakes is the peak of relaxation. Borrow a free colorful rainbow umbrella for an even more photogenic feeling!！
The mountaintop café, Nanairo, is right next to a wooden deck terrace. Choose among the wide selection of stylish drinks and chill out on the wood deck terrace to enjoy the spectacular panorama of the Sea of Japan.
Wood Deck Terrace
The view of the Sea of Japan from the deck is simply superb!
The Rainbow Line's famous Blue Soft Cream and Rainbow Blue Tea is not to be missed. Hold your blue ice cream or drink high and snap a pic against the azure of lake, sea and sky for a standout image!
Blue Soft Serve
Rainbow Blue Tea
A rose garden is also nearby where about 600 colorful roses of 110 varieties are grown. Spring roses usually reach full bloom from late May to mid-June. A stroll around the park embraced by the fragrance of these flowers is bliss.
One of the highlights of Mihama Terrace is definitely the Sky Footbath! There are footbaths on both the side of the Mikata Five Lakes and that of the Sea of Japan. Treat yourself to the pleasure of soaking in a footbath, gazing at the magnificent scenery.
Sky Footbath Entrance
Vinyl socks are also available (for a fee), so you can enjoy the footbath even while wearing stockings or tights. Such a considerate system shows real kindness.
Footbath Vinyl Socks
In addition to the stellar sights, you can also try the Japanese custom called "kawarake-nage" where people write wishes on coasters and hurl them from a high place. In this case, cast your wishes into the lake to your heart's content!
Small Coasters for Throwing Kawarake
Taste local specialties such as the grilled rice balls called “dango” at the Japanese-style café Gokoan.
Japanese-style café Gokoan exterior
Wakasa Town is also famous for growing Japanese plums, called “ume.” Gokoan offers the standard sweet-soy dipped “mitarashi dango,” but be sure to give this shop's original ume sauce a try!
Savoring grilled dango with ume sauce in front of the majestic vista is a treat that can't be beat!
These dango are quite large, so it might be best for two people to share one.
Each of the five terraces has its own charm, allowing you to feel the powerful scenery of the Mikata Five Lakes and the Sea of Japan from a variety of perspectives! Half a day may be just right to fully enjoy this wonderful place.
20 minutes by car from Wakasa Mikata IC to Rainbow Line No. 1 parking lot (10 km)
40 minutes by car from Tsuruga IC to Rainbow Line No. 1 parking lot (28 km)
By public transportation and taxi:
10-15 minutes by taxi from Mihama Station (about 2,000 yen)
35 minutes by taxi from Tsuruga Station (about 8,000 yen)
|Business hours||March 1-November 30: 9:00-17:00,|
December 1-February 28: 9:00-16:30