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List of the Best Fall Foliage Viewing Spots in Japan’s Tohoku Region

In 2017, the Tohoku region will soon be dotted with fall leaves soon. The must-visit fall foliage viewing spots in the six prefectures in the Tohoku region are listed here for your reference. We wish you a pleasant hanami tour♡

※ The article will be updated from time to time. Latest update on September 20, 2017.

Iwate Prefecture: fall colors of Hachimantai Plateau
Iwate Prefecture: fall colors of Hachimantai Plateau

Must-visit Fall Foliage Viewing Spots in the Tohoku Region ★ as Recommended by the Editors★

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Must-Visit Fall Foliage Viewing Spots in Aomori Prefecture

Seven Swamps of Tsuta: Flaming Fall Foliage Reflections in Water, a Breathtaking Sight at Oirase

The Seven Swamps of Tsuta (“Tsuta Nana Numa” in Japanese) are several swamps in Oirase; surrounded by numerous Japanese beeches, the area is also called a Sea of Trees in Towada. When fall begins, countless fall leaves are mirrored in the water to form “fall foliage reflections in water”, which are a magnificent and stunning spectacle at sunrise as it seems that fall leaves are blazing on the water.

< Best time to view fall foliage: Mid-October to late October >

Fall leaves seems to be aflame on the water at sunrise!
Fall leaves seems to be aflame on the water at sunrise!

Ketoba Lake with Brightly Colored Fall Foliage, a Wonderland on Earth among the Juniko Lakes

Western Shirakami-Sanchi (literally “white god mountain area”) boasts a fall foliage viewing spot, Ketoba Lake, which is reputed to be a “wonderland on earth”. As its name implies, the lake resembles a cockscomb (“keto” in Japanese). With dense forests of beeches mirrored in the pellucid lake, the scenery is absolutely fantastic.

< Best time to view fall foliage: Mid-October to late October >

Ketoba Lake, a wonderland on earth!
Ketoba Lake, a wonderland on earth!

Must-Visit Fall Foliage Viewing Spots in Iwate Prefecture

Kinshu Lake, a Must-Visit Spot Where Fall Waters Merge into the Sky

People often use “brocade” to praise enchanting fall foliage viewing spots, as brocade is characterized by gorgeousness and richness. In Iwate Prefecture in northern Japan, there is a bewitching spot for viewing fall foliage, which is called Kinshu Lake (literally “brocade-like fall”) and where fall waters merge into the sky.

< Best time to view fall foliage: Mid-October to early November >

Getting back to nature and walking around the lake!
Getting back to nature and walking around the lake!

Must-Visit Fall Foliage Viewing Spots in Miyagi Prefecture

Naruko Gorge Boasting Idyllic and Picturesque Scenes of Fall Leaves

In fall, Japan is tinted with gorgeous red and goldenness. Located in Miyagi Prefecture, the Naruko Gorge (Naruko-kyo) boasts idyllic and picturesque scenes of fall leaves, and can be called the best fall foliage viewing spot in the Tohoku region.

< Best time to view fall foliage: Late October to early November >

Ofukazawa Bridge over the Naruko Gorge ♪
Ofukazawa Bridge over the Naruko Gorge ♪

Choroko Lake with Fiery Red Maple Leaves Covering a Famous Mountain to the South of Mount Zao

If you want to appreciate the beauty of fall foliage in a quiet place, Choroko Lake in Shiroishi is recommended. Although not massively popular, the region has fiery red fall foliage and Mount Fubo (“Fubosan” in Japanese), a famous mountain to the south of Mount Zao. It is highly recommended for viewing fall foliage!

< Best time to view fall foliage: Mid-October to early November >

Clear lake before Mount Fubo, a famous mountain to the south of Mount Zao!
Clear lake before Mount Fubo, a famous mountain to the south of Mount Zao!

Must-Visit Fall Foliage Viewing Spots in Akita Prefecture

A Walking Trail for Viewing Fall Foliage in Kakunodate

Kakunodate, a place of interest famed for cherry blossoms and fall foliage, which located in Akita Prefecture’s Senboku, boasts chessboard-like streets, quaint samurai houses (bukeyashiki), tightly packed temples and shrines, and unadorned workshops & warehouses, which win the small pleasant town a reputation as the “Little Kyoto of Tohoku”.

< Best time to view fall foliage: Late October to mid-November >

Elegant mix of reds and blacks by fall leaves and black walls
Elegant mix of reds and blacks by fall leaves and black walls

Hottai Falls, the Best Location for Movies in Japan!

There is much water accumulating on the summit of Mount Chokai, which is located in Akita Prefecture and included as one of the 100 Famous Mountains in Japan. The water is divided into three cascades: first cascades. second cascade and third cascade. As they descend quickly from the top, the scene is a magnificent spectacle. This is famous Hottai Falls. In early fall, with fall foliage covering the mountain, there is more picturesque scenery here than one can take in and hence here has become the location for many movies and televisions in Japan.

< Best time to view fall foliage: Mid-October to late October >

Hottai Falls, the best location for movies in Japan!
Hottai Falls, the best location for movies in Japan!

Must-Visit Fall Foliage Viewing Spots in Yamagata Prefecture

A Tour of Bonji-gawa Valley, a Bewitching Spot for Viewing Fall Foliage

Bonji-gawa Valley, near Mount Yudono in Yamagata Prefecture, is a recommendable spot for viewing fall foliage. There are not only the secluded valley but also fall hills blanketed with fall foliage pleasing to the eye. The surrounding dam, bridges, lakes, waterfalls and shrines are elaborately adorned with fall foliage as well.

< Best time to view fall foliage: Mid-October to early November >

Bonji-gawa Valley in the season for viewing fall foliage ♡
Bonji-gawa Valley in the season for viewing fall foliage ♡

Must-Visit Fall Foliage Viewing Spots in Fukushima Prefecture

Climbing Mount Ryo to View Fall Foliage and Rocks in Ryozen Prefectural Natural Park

Mount Ryo (Ryozen), located in Date, Fukushima Prefecture at an altitude of 825 m, offers beautiful views all the year round. With numerous maple trees and zelkova trees, the mountain is a famous spot for viewing fall foliage in Fukushima. Boasting undulating terrain, it is also reputed to be a “mountain of rocks”, most of which are basalt. The mountain was built with walkways following its being designated as the site for Ryozen Prefectural Natural Park. You can view wonderful peculiarly-shaped rocks and fall leaves, while you are hiking the mountain.

< Best time to view fall foliage: Mid-October to early November >

Viewing wonderful peculiarly-shaped rocks and fall leaves during hiking of the mountain ♪
Viewing wonderful peculiarly-shaped rocks and fall leaves during hiking of the mountain ♪

Galloping on the Tadami Line amid Beautiful Fall Leaves

The Tadami Line is a 153.2 km long local branch that connects Aizu-Wakamatsu Station in Fukushima Prefecture and neighboring Koide Station in Niigata Prefecture. When trains run in the valley amid the beautiful scenery that decorating the Tadami River, you can enjoy the sight of the nature untouched by humans, so the route is ideal for railroad fans.

< Best time to view fall foliage: Mid-October to mid-November >

Looking at the Trains Galloping on the Tadami Line amid Beautiful Scenery
Looking at the Trains Galloping on the Tadami Line amid Beautiful Scenery