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Arrival of the colorful autumn! Highly-recommended spots to view autumn foliage!

Magazine

UpdateSeptember 7, 2018
ReleaseSeptember 7, 2018

Autumn is the season where leaves turn red and yellow, creating beautifully colored scenery. With an expanded offer that includes rides on JR buses (with some exceptions) within individual covered areas, the JR EAST PASS is a great way to visit places to view autumn foliage.

■JR EAST PASS (Tohoku area)

Lake Towada/Aomori Prefecture

Enjoy vividly colored leaves, including yellow and orange leaves of Japanese beech and katsura trees and red leaves of maple trees. It is recommended to stroll around the walking path from Mimaegahama beach, where the Otome-no-zo (Statue of Maidens) is located, to Katsuragahama beach, as well as viewing the autumnal landscape from a sightseeing boat.
[Peak season] Mid-October to late October
[Access] 2 hr. and 15 min. by JR bus from JR Hachinohe Station (you must show your JR EAST PASS (Tohoku Area) to get on the bus for free)

Morioka Castle Site Park (Iwate Park)/Iwate Prefecture

Located on the site of Morioka Castle, the park has more than 500 trees of various kinds, including maple, cherry and gingko trees, which are beautifully colored in autumn. The colored leaves and the stone wall create a beautiful contrast, attracting many visitors in the season of autumn foliage.
[Peak season] Late October to early November
[Access] 15 min. on foot from JR Morioka Station

Kakunodate/Akita Prefecture

Kakunodate Tourist Association
Kakunodate, a town with old samurai residences, is a place to see gorgeous autumn foliage. The red and yellow colors of the maple and gingko leaves stand out against the black fences that surround the historic samurai premises.
[Peak season] Late October to mid-November
[Access] 20 min. on foot from JR Kakunodate Station

Yamadera (Risshaku-ji Temple)/Yamagata Prefecture

The combination of strange-shaped rocks, huge rocks, an old temple, and colorful leaves is splendid. You can also enjoy the wonderful autumn foliage in this area, including Yamadera, Omoshiroyama Momijigawa-keikoku Valley, and Okunikkawa River, while riding on a train on the JR Senzan Line.
[Peak Season] Mid-October to mid-November
[Access] 5 min. on foot from JR Yamadera Station

■JR EAST PASS (Nagano, Niigata area)

Ueda Castle Park/Nagano Prefecture

Ueda City Multimedia Information Center
Ueda Castle was constructed by Sanada Masayuki, a feudal lord in the Sengoku (Warring States) period (late 15th to late 16th century). During the autumn foliage season, the area is ablaze with the deep red color of maple leaves and golden color of gingko leaves. The colorful leaves are lit up during the period of “Ueda Castle Autumn Leaves Festival” in early November, creating a fantastical night-time view of the autumn foliage.
[Peak season] Late October to mid-November
[Access] 12 min. on foot from JR Ueda Station

Yuzawa Kogen/Niigata Prefecture

©Yuzawa Kogen
Going up to the summit by ropeway, you can enjoy a panoramic view of autumn foliage at Uonuma Plain, Tanigawa mountain range, Makihata mountain range, and Mount Omine. In front of the summit station, there is a café with a wonderful view as well as a footbath.
[Peak season] Late October to early November
[Access] 10 min. on foot from JR Echigo-Yuzawa Station (ropeway fare is not included in the pass)

■JR EAST PASS (Tohoku area), JR EAST PASS (Nagano, Niigata area)

Kirifuri Falls/Tochigi Prefecture

Located on Kirifuri River, this 75-meter high waterfall is one of Nikko’s “three famous waterfalls,” along with Kegon Falls and Urami Falls. The observation deck that is located directly in front of the waterfall is a perfect place to fully enjoy the scenery of the waterfall and autumn foliage together.
[Peak season] Late October to early November
[Access] 10 min. by bus from JR Nikko Station / Tobu Nikko Station (bus fare is not included in the pass)

Hitachi Seaside Park/Ibaraki Prefecture

This park is blessed with beautiful flowers and plants. The view of Miharashi-no-oka Hill colored in vivid red tints by Bassia scoparia (kochia) is a feature of autumn that is a truly splendid sight to see. You can also see beautiful cosmoses and roses.
[Peak season] Mid-October (Kochia), Early October to mid-October (Cosmos)
[Access] 20 min. by bus from JR Katsuta Station (bus fare is not included in the pass)

About “JR EAST PASS (Tohoku area)”

www.jreast.co.jp/e/eastpass_t/
Validity: Flexible for 5 days (any 5 days within 14 days of inssuance)
Prices: Outside Japan: Adults 19,000 yen, Children 9,500 yen/Within Japan: Adults 20,000 yen, Children 10,000 yen
Sales locations: JR EAST Travel Service Center (Narita Airport Terminal 1/2-3, Haneda Airport International Terminal, Tokyo, Ueno, Shinjuku, Shibuya, Ikebukuro, Hamamatsucho, Sendai Sta.) and other ticket counter

About “JR EAST PASS (Nagano, Niigata area)”

www.jreast.co.jp/e/eastpass_n/
About “JR EAST PASS (Nagano, Niigata area)”
www.jreast.co.jp/e/eastpass_t/
Validity: Flexible for 5 days (any 5 days within 14 days of inssuance)
Prices: Outside Japan: Adults 17,000 yen, Children 8,500 yen/Within Japan: Adults 18,000 yen, Children 9,000 yen
Sales locations: JR EAST Travel Service Center (Narita Airport Terminal 1/2-3, Haneda Airport International Terminal, Tokyo, Ueno, Shinjuku, Shibuya, Ikebukuro, Hamamatsucho Sta.) and other ticket counter

JR-EAST Train Reservation

You can reserve seats of JR East Shinkansen bullet trains and major limited express via “JR-EAST Train Reservation” website.
*A part of the trail is narrow and slippery. Please make sure to wear clothing and shoes appropriate for walking.
*Information on this page is as of July 2018.