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Nature Views in Gifu

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Shirakawa Village
Hidden away deep in the mountains is this quaint settlement in Shirakawa Village that is famous for its ”gassho-zukuri” houses whose grand roofs resemble hands clasped in prayer. Many of these houses are still inhabited to this day, and together with their adjacent rice paddies, they paint an incredibly picturesque landscape that is a joy to behold and to take a stroll through.
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Shirotori Garden
Enjoy a leisurely stroll in a traditional Japanese garden. In the centre of the garden is a pond that replicates the Kiso River, originating from the Kiso-Ontakesan flowing into the large sea of Ise Bay. A Japanese tea ceremony house Seiutei is available in the garden to try green tea with Japanese confectionery.
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Korankei
Korankei (香嵐渓, Kōrankei) is a valley near Nagoya reputed to be one of the best spots for autumn colours in the Chubu Region. Shaping the valley is the 254 meters tall Mount Iimori, on which Kojakuji Temple stands. In the 17th century, the head priest of Kojakuji planted some maple trees along with the temple approach, prompting many locals to do the same in the area. Today, visitors to Korankei can see the fruits of these past efforts, in the form of excellent autumn scenery that peaks around mid to late November each year. The best colours tend to appear around the paths along Tomoe River at the western and southern sides of Mount Iimori. Visitors can enjoy lovely sights of maple tree tunnels and autumn colours in combination with views of the river and the few bridges across it. The vermillion Taigetsukyo Bridge is the symbol of Korankei and a great picture-taking spot.
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Ohara
Ohara (大原, Ōhara) is a rural town nestled in the mountains of northern Kyoto, about one hour from Kyoto Station, but still technically located within Kyoto's city limits. Ohara is best known for Sanzenin Temple and particularly popular in mid November during the autumn leaf season, which typically occurs about one week earlier than in central Kyoto.
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Kurama Hot Springs
Kurama (鞍馬) is a rural town in the northern mountains of Kyoto City, less than one hour from the city center. Kurama is best known for its temple Kurama-dera and its hot spring, one of the most easily accessible hot springs from Kyoto. Outdoor and indoor baths can be enjoyed at Kurama Onsen, a ryokan located at the upper end of the town of Kurama. It can be reached in a 10 minute walk from the train station along the town's only road or along a nature trail following the river. Staying guests can use the baths for free, while daytrippers pay 2500 yen to use all of the baths or 1000 yen for just the outdoor bath (rotemburo).
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Maruyama Park
Maruyama Park (円山公園, Maruyama Kōen) is a public park next to Yasaka Shrine in the Higashiyama District. In the first half of April, when the cherry trees are in full bloom, the park becomes Kyoto's most popular and most crowded spot for cherry blossom viewing parties (hanami). The centerpiece of the park is a tall shidarezakura (weeping cherry tree), which gets lit up in the night. Maruyama Park can be reached by bus from Kyoto Station in about 20 minutes. Take number 100 or 206 and get off at Gion bus stop. The park is just behind Yasaka Shrine. Alternatively, the park can be reached in a 15+ minute walk from Kiyomizudera through the narrow lanes of the Higashiyama District.
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Ishitera Tea Fields
The most famous tea plantations in Wazuka are in Ishitera. It was designated and registered as the first of the Scenic Property of Kyoto Prefecture. This tea field photo is used in many different tea places as a promotion in Kyoto. It takes about 10~15 minutes to walk there from the nearest bus stop ‘Wazuka Takahashi’. Among the tea fields there are new houses and old houses where people. There are spots for cherry blossoms and tea fields which go through winter in spring.
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Mino Park
Minoo Park (箕面公園, Minō Kōen, also spelt Mino or Minoh) is a forested valley on the outskirts of Osaka, just north of the urban sprawl. During the fall, it is one of the best places in the Kansai Region to see the autumn colours in a natural setting, as opposed to the attractive fall foliage found at temples and gardens. The colours are usually best in the second half of November. Similar to Tokyo's Mount Takao, Minoo Park is the closest spot to the busy metropolis of Osaka to find a spacious natural recreation area. The park can be reached in less than 30 minutes from the downtown Umeda area. Another similarity, Takao and Minoo were both given quasi-national park status in 1967 to commemorate the hundredth anniversary of the Meiji Period (1867-1912).
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Naenataki Fall
An impressive 55m waterfall framed by a steep basalt wall on each side, where thundering water crashes onto the large boulders below. The most popular season is spring when the snowmelt from the mountain flows down and causes the volume of water to increase dramatically, but we would also invite you to take a look in the fall season when the leaves have changed colours. There is a pedestrian deck overlooking waterfall, and it is about 15 minutes on foot from the nearest parking area. Come and feel the power at the basin of the waterfalls from the observation area.
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Tsunan Sunflower Field
500 thousand sunflowers bloom broadly in this 4-hectare field. The children's sunflower maze inside the field is one popular attraction. Guests can get a panoramic view of the sunflower field from the observation platform, where they can surely take photos that they will like. Outdoor stalls line the plaza area, energizing the entire venue.
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Hoshitoge Rice Terraces
There are many rice terraces in Tokamachi. If you only have time to see one, we recommend the Hoshitoge Rice Terraces. If you visit early in the morning, you may be able to see the sea of clouds drifting into the valley. In summer the whole landscape turns shades of bright green, and in winter, the rice terrace is covered with snow. You can enjoy various beautiful landscapes depending on the season and time.
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Kiyotsukyo Gorge
One of the Three Great Gorges of Japan. Gigantic stone cliffs straddle a river, forming a large, V-shaped gorge. The grand rock surface and strong current of the river in combination are both dynamic and beautiful. The facilities were renovated in the spring of 2018. A two-story building with a cafe on the first floor and foot bath on the second floor is now in operation right next to the tunnel entrance.
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Hama Rikyu
Hama Rikyu (浜離宮, Hama Rikyū), is a large, attractive landscape garden in central Tokyo. Located alongside Tokyo Bay, Hama Rikyu features seawater ponds which change level with the tides, and a teahouse on an island where visitors can rest and enjoy the scenery. The traditionally styled garden stands in stark contrast to the skyscrapers of the adjacent Shiodome district. The garden has served many purposes over the centuries. It was originally built as a feudal lord's Tokyo residence and duck hunting grounds during the Edo Period (1603-1867), but later served as a strolling garden and as an imperial detached palace before eventually being opened to the public in its current form. Vestiges of these old roles are still visible throughout the garden including several reconstructed duck hunting blinds, and the remains of an old moat and reconstructed rock wall. Hama Rikyu is attractive in any season. Although not as famous for its fall foliage as some of the other gardens around Tokyo, it offers plenty of maple, ginkgo and other trees that show their beautiful autumn colors between late November and early December.
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Tsukishima
Tsukishima (月島, lit. moon island) is a man made island in Tokyo Bay, just across the channel from Tsukiji fish market. It was created over 100 years ago using earth that was dredged from the bay during the construction of a shipping channel. In the last few decades, areas of the island were redeveloped into residential high-rise complexes; however, you can still find remnants of the atmosphere of old Tokyo if you poke around the back alleys and lanes, especially around Sumiyoshi Shrine.
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Hiruzen-kogen Heights
Located on a gently sloping plateau, Hiruzen-kogen Heights is Japan’s leading resort area. The area is famous as the largest breeding zone for Jersey cows in Japan. Whether to take in the fresh greenery of spring or the fall foliage in autumn, the Hiruzen-kogen Heights Cycling Path is a popular cycling destination, and with hiking and camping in summer and playing in the snow in winter, the area offers visitors the chance to experience the richness of nature in any season. Visitors are also encouraged to try local gourmet offerings such as “Hiruzen Yakisoba” (noodles stir-fried in a miso-based sauce), “Genghis Khan” (a grilled mutton dish), and soft-serve ice cream and cheese made from the milk of the area’s Jersey cows.
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Niigata Furusato Village
Niigata boasts sake, rice, and fish that can compete with the best in the nation as well as specialty products and traditional crafts. You can find all of these for sale at Niigata Furusato Village. What’s more, there are a whopping 10,000 products available!
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Fukushimagata Wetlands
Fukushimagata Wetlands is a vast nature reserve stretching over 193 hectares. It is home to a number of endangered species of animals and plants and is listed on Japan’s 100 greatest natural environments. The park is a paradise for bird and plant lovers. In spring, the carpet of rapeseed flowers is impressive. Indulge yourself in the vivid yellow colour and scent of the flowers while listening to birds singing. In summer, giant pink lotus flowers are in bloom. The rarely seen Euryale ferox, a massive lotus with two-metre leaves and thorns, can be found here. In winter, the snowy scene of the wetlands with migratory swans is a favourite. Along with flocks of swans, the greatest concentration of Eastern Taiga Bean geese, a recognised national natural treasure, resides here. Fukushimagata Wetlands is also designated as a wildlife sanctuary for the Japanese white crucian carp.
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Sakurajima
Sakurajima (桜島) is one of Japan's most active volcanoes and the symbol of Kagoshima. The volcano smokes constantly, and minor eruptions often take place multiple times per day. Located in the middle of Kagoshima Bay, Sakurajima is the area's most prominent geographic feature, having an elevation of 1117 meters and a circumference of about 50 kilometres. Before a powerful eruption in 1914, Sakurajima used to be an island in the bay, but the massive lava flow from that eruption created the volcano's current land connection to the Osumi Peninsula in the east. For the majority of travellers, however, the volcano is still most easily accessed by the ferries that run the 3.5 kilometres between Kagoshima Port and the Sakurajima Ferry Terminal.
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Senganen Garden
Senganen Garden (仙巌園), also known as Isoteien (磯庭園), is a Japanese style landscaped garden along the coast north of downtown Kagoshima. One of the garden's most striking features is its use of Sakurajima and Kagoshima Bay as borrowed scenery. The garden also includes small ponds, streams, shrines and a bamboo grove. Senganen was constructed in 1658 by the wealthy Shimazu Clan, one of the most powerful feudal clans during the Edo Period (1603-1867). The Shimazu ruled the Satsuma domain (present-day Kagoshima) for almost 700 years until the end of the feudal age in 1868. They continued to be influential into the modern era as some of the earliest adopters of Western science and technology. At the centre of the garden stands the Iso Residence. The residence was originally built in 1658 along with the rest of the garden, but the current building mostly dates back to a mid-1880s reconstruction. After the end of the feudal age, the Iso Residence became the main residence of the Shimazu family, and its rooms are preserved in the way they were used in the 1890s.
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Shiroyama Park
Shiroyama Park (城山公園, Shiroyama Kōen) is a park in downtown Kagoshima that extends over Mount Shiroyama. With an elevation of 107 meters, the mountain formerly served as the site of a castle fortification, which led to its name. Shiroyama literally means "castle mountain" in Japanese. The castle's former grounds at the base of the mountain now serve as the site of the Reimeikan Museum. The park is most famous for its Shiroyama Observatory with spectacular views over downtown Kagoshima, Kagoshima Bay and Sakurajima. The night view is also nice, particularly if a clear sky and bright moon allow Sakurajima to remain visible. Nice views can also be enjoyed from the Satsuma no Yu outdoor hot spring bath at the nearby Castle Park Hotel, which is also open to non-staying guests.
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Dream Forest
Dream Forest is the fourth largest park in Seoul, after the World Cup Park, Olympic Park and Seoul Forest, and has become a part of the lives of 2.67million residents of six districts, Gangbuk, Seongbuk, Dobong, Nowon, Dongdaemun and Jungnang. In the heart of the forest is a large lake named Wallyoungji, with the 7 m-high Wallgwang Waterfall and the pavilion Aewalljeong, not to mention grasslands twice the size of the Seoul Plaza. Situated on the rim of Wallyoungji stands the traditional Korean hanok building, Changnyeonggungjaesa (No. 40 Registered Cultural Property), in its entire classical splendor. The 49.7 m Observatory overlooking downtown Seoul is a special attraction point. The breathtaking ridges of Bukhansan(Mt.), Dobongsan(Mt.) and Suraksan(Mt.) roll out to the north, and Mt. Nam and the River Han majestically fill the scenery to the south. Five different wild flower gardens have been created behind the parking lot, such as Suro Garden, Sagaewon, Brown Garden and Hwamokwon, and the Chilpokchi, a waterfall with seven streams, is also worth experiencing.
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Mount Moiwa
Mount Moiwa (藻岩山, Moiwa-yama) is one of several small, forested mountains southwest of central Sapporo. The mountain is a popular sightseeing spot that is known for the spectacular view out over the city from an observation deck at its summit. The view is especially beautiful after sunset.
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Hokkaido University Botanic Gardens
This botanical garden (北海道大学植物園, Hokkaidō Daigaku Shokubutsuen) close to Sapporo's city center belongs to Hokkaido University and primarily serves a scientific and educational purpose. The garden with its walking trails and lawns, however, is also a pleasant place to take a break or to have a (non-alcoholic) picnic. Established in 1886, the Botanic Garden preserves a small part of the forest which formerly covered the Ishikari Plain. In addition, there is an alpine garden, a greenhouse and a small Ainu museum. During the winter, only the greenhouse is open to the public.
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Tomita Farm
As far as day trip ideas from Asahikawa go, Tomita Farm is a great choice. A 10ha lavender paradise, Tomita Farm provides ample opportunity for relaxed walks surrounded by seemingly endless patchwork of color, so beautifully arranged and expertly manicured, that the hills seem almost artificial. Beautiful birch-lined pathways provide comfortable shaded access to the many lavender gift shops, workshops, and rest stops scattered throughout the gardens. The workshops allow visitors to see first-hand how the harvested lavender is treated, worked, and turned into the countless lavender infused products available as elegant gifts and items for everyday use. Lovers of sweets will be impressed by the lavender flavored soft-serve ice cream, pudding, and jelly found at the cafe, along with plenty of other light lunch options.
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Seven Stars Tree
Sevenstar Tree (セブンスターの木) is oak on Patchwork Hill (パッチワークの丘) in Biei town located in the southeastern part of Asahikawa city and was named after Sevenstar (famous Japanese cigarette). The tree was printed on a package of the cigarette in 1976 and has become a famous tourist attraction. A solitary oak grows around the hilltop of the Biri at about 260 m above sea level. Its height is around 13 m. In the summer, the vital power can be felt when branches are thickly covered with leaves. But it looks only just the tree with a lot of branches closely, so it is worth seeing at a little distance.
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Ueno Farm
Ueno Farm is a popular farm garden in Nagayama located in the northeastern part of Asahikawa city and has been a farmer since 1906. Ms Sayuki Ueno, a gardener, made a Hokkaido-style garden suited for the climate and natural features of Hokkaido as the foundation for an English-style garden at their site and the garden has been opened to the public since 2001. More than 2,000 types of flowering plants are planted at about 1.3 ha of the site, and visitors can enjoy various flowers from spring to autumn. An open period is from late April to mid-October. Admission fee is JPY 800. A parking lot is free of charge. NAYA cafe is built at the site and opens a business through the year.
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Daisetsuzan National Park
Daisetsuzan (大雪山) is Hokkaido's largest national park. It preserves a mountainous area of virtually unspoiled wilderness, which is larger than some of Japan's smaller prefectures. It is a paradise for hikers, outdoor lovers, deer and brown bears, and the first place in Japan to see fall colors and snow each autumn.
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China Dinosaur Park
China Dinosaur Park is located at the Modern Tourism & Recreation Park in Xinbei district of Changzhou, which was built in 1997 and opened to the public on September 20th, 2000. Also known as"OrientalJurassicPark", China Dinosaur Park covers a total area of over 600 mu, which perfectly combines museum, hi-tech acoustic, optic and electric technology, special video effects and multimedia network, and integrates exhibition, science popularization, entertainment, leisure and participatory performances.
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Slender West Lake
As the most famous tourist attraction in Yangzhou, Slender West Lake in the north part of the city covers about 100 hectares.It was named a national key scenic spot in 1988 and a national 5A-level tourist zone in 2010.
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Tianmu Lake
Tianmu Lake Tourist Resort is ranked among the first batch of National AAAA Scenic Spots, which is on the border among Jiangsu, Anhui and Zhejiang provinces. It consists of two strips of water area, lying on either side of Dongling Mountain. The source of Tianmu Lake connects with Tianmu Mountain and flows for 13.5 kilometers. The lake has an average depth of 10 meters and reaches the deepest at 28 meters. The lake water mainly came from rainwater and mountain streams, which have been purified by the vegetation of surrounding mountains and filtered by the underwater stones before running into the lake; therefore, Tianmu Lake has maintained the purity and mineral composition of natural spring, the water of which reaches National Class B for surface water and is considered as the best water within Jiangsu province.   Tianmu Lake is located about 60 to 200 kilometres away from Shanghai, Nanjing, Hangzhou, Suzhou, Wuxi and Changzhou, reputed as the “Eco-Home and Dreamy Paradise”, the “Southern Pearl and Green Wonderland.” Surrounded by mountains, Tianmu Lake Resort boasts crystal clear water and pleasant climate, with vegetation coverage of 45% or more, which has become a “back garden” and “natural oxygen bar” of the peripheral cities, suitable for visiting in over 300 days a year.
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Mt. Chi Zhu
Mt. Chi Zhu has a legendary story. It is said that Mr. Gan Jiang and Ms. Mo Ye (Gan Jiang’s wife) set ovens and made swords in Spring and Autumn period. The remains of “Quenching stone”, “Whetstone” are well preserved. It is recorded that Gan Jiang was buried in Mt. Chi Zhu. Mr. Li Jing, Earl in Tang Dynasty, put down a rebellion in the nearby.
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Zhe Pagoda
Situated in the backyard of Jiuhua Palace in Zheshan Park, Zhe Pagoda can be dated back to Song Dynasty in 1065. It is regarded as the key relics preservation in Anhui province. The Pagoda is surrounded by hills and trees. It is worthwhile taking a one-day trip in the downtown with other attractions like Guangji Temple, Shutian Pavilion, Cuiming Garden, Mr. Liu Xiping’s graveyard, lieutenant General Dai Anlan’s graveyard.
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Mutianyu Great Wall
Mutianyu Great Wall is located 70 km away from Beijing, which makes it significantly less busy and features some fun, modern amusements, such as a cable car, chairlift, and toboggan. It has unique design and construction, having 3 enemy towers build next to each other. When visiting, each season bring their own beauty to the scenery. From green mountains and flowers to snowy mountain tops tops and autumn leaves.
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Tamsui Old Street
The far end of Old Street opens onto the Fisherman's Wharf, which is a perfect locale for viewing the sunset. Here also are the docks from whence travelers may ferry across the harbor to Bali.
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