Bandai-Azuma Skyline

Bandai-Azuma Skyline

This sightseeing road that runs from Fukushima City's Takayu Onsen to the Tsuchiyu Pass, commanding panoramic views of the surrounding landscape.

The spectacular views that stretch out at an average altitude of 1,350 meters attract visitors time and time again, and Bandai-Azuma Skyline has been selected as one of the 100 Best Roads in Japan.

In spring, tourists can enjoy flower viewing while at the same time taking in the otherworldly winter scenery of the "Snow Corridor".

In summer, the Nemoto Shakunage (Rhododendron brachycarpum), a species of alpine rose, and other alpine plants display their colorful flowers and fresh, brilliant green leaves. During autumn, the drive warms as roads become enclosed by fiery seasonal leaves.

There are also many hot springs in the vicinity of the Skyline where visitors can enjoy a bath and relax stiff muscles while out on a daytrip.

The roadway passes next to the crater of Mt. Azuma-Kofuji. Visitors can easily park their car at the nearby guest center and enjoy a short hike up to the crater’s rim.

The Bandai-Azuma Skyline Roadway has been selected as one of the top 100 roads in Japan, and unlike many others, this one is free to use. There are rest stops along the way for the hungry traveler; the most popular is Jododaira, as it’s home to a rest house and an observatory.

Be sure to plan ahead though, from mid-November to early April the roadway is closed due to heavy winter snowfall.

Venue Details

Venue Details
Websitehttps://www.f-kankou.jp/en/discover/nature/347/
Contact

Fukushima City Tourism & Convention Association

(+81) 24-563-5554

Best Season
  • Summer
  • Autumn
ParkingAvailable
Related infoSeason: Open from early April through to mid-November. The road is closed from mid-November every year.
Access Details
AccessFukushima City, Fukushima Pref.
View directions
Getting there

By Car: 30 min from Fukushima-Nishi I.C. exit off Tohoku Expressway (Enter via Takayu Toll Gate)

Useful Links

Jododaira Visitor Center

Bandai-Azuma Skyline Cycling Route

Destination Spotlight: Azuma-Kofuji’s Short & Scenic Hiking Route

Destination Spotlight: Snowy Drive Along Bandai-Azuma Skyline

Mt. Azuma-Kofuji

Related trips

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    Spend a couple of beautiful days admiring the colors of autumn in Fukushima from the comfort of your car. You will love zooming around the prefecture and seeing all that autumn has to offer. With some of the best autumn vistas in the prefecture right outside your window, be sure to have your camera at the ready. Rent a car at Fukushima Station, and make your way down the picturesque Bandai-Azuma Skyline where you’ll see trees and mountainous views on either side. The colors of autumn will surround you like a cozy blanket and you will definitely want to take it slow to enjoy these brilliant leaves. Drive the mountain road down to the Bandai-Azuma Lake Line and admire the reflections of the autumnal trees on the surface of the beautiful waters. Take in the panorama of colors and nature in this tranquil setting before moving on to the next amazing site. Visit the fascinating Goshiki-numa Ponds that change color throughout the day; admire the various shades of these volcano-created ponds. Finish your crimson leaf tour of Fukushima at To-no-hetsuri Crags where you can drink up the gorgeous vista of trees against the stony edifice before heading back to Shin-Shirakawa Station and ending your trip.  

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    1. Adventure

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      Have you ever wanted to take a cross-prefecture tour of Japan, from Tokyo to the impeccable countryside of Fukushima? Well, now is your chance to travel from the international hub of Tokyo and see what else Japan and—especially—Fukushima have to offer. Enjoy this cross-country tour of Japan any time of the year, over the span of a few days so that you can enjoy things at your pace. You’ll find life outside of Tokyo goes at a much slower pace. Start your trip from Tokyo Station and ride a short distance to Asakusa. See one of the busiest shrine-and-temple locations in Tokyo. You’ll love the bustling atmosphere and the street stalls with their many trinkets and souvenirs. Once you’ve finished in Asakusa, head out of the city and make your way for Tochigi Prefecture’s Nikko. Nikko is perhaps most famous for the three monkey statues that people equate with “hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil”. You’ll see these wonderful statues and more while you stop over in Nikko. From there, travel north to Higashiyama Onsen and enjoy the sights form the train along the way. Higashiyama Onsen is Fukushima’s home to some truly great hot springs and Japanese-style inns. Soak up the hot waters and relax your tired muscles. At Tsuruga-jo Castle, you can walk the pristine gardens and enjoy the castle grounds. Be sure to make note of the red-roof tiles of the castle as well, this is the only castle in Japan that boasts having these deep-red tiles. Inside the castle keep, discover the history of the Aizu samurai through the many exhibits and displayed artifacts. Make your way to Nanokamachi-dori Street and admire the local architecture, which is quite different than that from the rest of the area. Search out local hidden gems along the narrow streets and find the perfect souvenir to take home. Enjoy your time in Tokyo, Tochigi, and Fukushima like never before with this route.  

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        Must See Sights of Fukushima:Halal Friendly Model Route

        Including halal friendly information! This is a two-day model course by public transportation and rental car that takes you through breathtaking nature to the historic post town of Ouchi-juku and Tsurugajo Castle, home of the once mighty Aizu samurai clan! Information about halal restaurants and lodgings is available at the bottom of this page. From Tokyo to Fukushima, you can conveniently use the Shinkansen bullet train or the Tobu Liberty train that leaves from Asakusa station. From the terminus at Aizu Tajima Station, you can easily hire a cab that offers a full-day plan to get to the historic Ouchi-juku and nearby Aizu-Wakamatsu City. On the first day, you will visit Ouchi-juku, where you can experience the historical charm of the Edo period, followed by the castle town of the former Aizu clan, Tsurugajo Castle in Aizu-Wakamatsu City. On the second day, get a taste for the rich nature of Tohoku. From Aizu-Wakamatsu Station, you can rent a car and drive towards the Urabandai area. Goshiki-numa, located in Bandai Asahi National Park, is a beautiful natural park named after its five colored lakes and ponds, which appear to change colors depending on the light at different times or day and seasons. Hop into a rowboat and paddle around to admire the carp swimming around in the crystal-clear waters of the lake. There is a trail that takes you around the Goshiki-numa area, where you can appreciate the hues of the various ponds. If you happen to be visiting in the fall, you will be blown away by the spectacular array of autumn leaves in their stunning gradients of red and gold. Finally, be sure to go fruit picking so that you can taste the delicious flavors of Japanese fruits at the end of your trip. HALAL-friendly Restaurant ※Reservations required [Japanese Restaurant] Kissui Restaurant Aizu-Wakamatsu City "Halal / VG Requests OK / Reservations required" http://aizu-kissui.jp [Chinese Restaurant] Hotel Hamatsu / Shaga Chinese Restaurant Koriyama City https://www.hotel-hamatsu.co.jp HALAL-friendly accommodations ※Reservations required ・Yosikawaya Iizaka Onsen Ryokan http://www.yosikawaya.com/ ・Inawashiro Rising Sun Hotel (Villa Inawashiro) https://www.villa.co.jp/ ・Bandai Lakeside Guesthouse Kitashiobara Village https://www.bandai.ski/   Taxi ・Minamiaizu Kanko(Hire a Taxi for 2-hour or 4-hour flat rate plan) https://www-minamiaizu-co-jp.translate.goog/tour/index.php?_x_tr_sl=ja&_x_tr_tl=en&_x_tr_hl=ja Rent a Car ・Eki Rent-a-car https://www.ekiren.co.jp/phpapp/en/  

Nearby

The World Glassware Hall
Nature & Scenery

Kassenba's Weeping Cherry Tree

These two weeping cherry trees are said to be the grandchildren of the great Miharu Takizakura weeping cherry tree in nearby Miharu Town. They bloom with fantastic pink flowers. When they are in full bloom, the trees are if a waterfall of blossoms is cascading from their branches. These trees are estimated to be around 170 years old. We recommend taking photographs from the bottom of the slope, so you can capture the pink of the blossoms, together with the blue of the sky, and yellow of the canola flowers.

The World Glassware Hall
Gourmet & Shopping

Kura Café Sen no Hana

The Kura Café Sen no Hana is located on the grounds on Kunitaya Miso Factory in a remodeled kura (storehouse). Try the local flavors of Fukushima cuisine with their lovely lunch items featuring locally Nihonmatsu-produced miso and soy sauce. There are also many other menu items to appreciate, such as amazake, Mongolian-style tea, and coffee. The inside of the shop is also calming and decorated with local pressed flowers.Open from 11:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. (with a break from 2:00 to 3:00 p.m.), the Kura Café Sen no Hana is sure to give your taste buds a treat. Their fair prices and delicious cuisine make them popular with locals and visitors alike.The amazake, a nonalcoholic drink made from koji, or fermentation starter, is popular with guests. As for food, the zaku zaku soup is a traditional soup of chunky cubed vegetables which is eaten on special occasions like festivals and ceremonies, it is a famous Nihonmatsu specialty. But if you’re wanting to go for dinner, make sure you’re there before the last order at 5:30 p.m. (4:30 p.m. on Sundays). Next door to the Kura Cafe Sen no Hana, guests can also visit the Kunitaya Miso Factory. The redwood lattice of the exterior is especially attractive. In addition to the tours, the Factory also sells miso, soy sauce, and koji, which is used to make Fukushima’s famous 'sagohachi' pickles.All the products for sale are made at the Kunitaya Miso Factory and use pure water from Mt. Adatara and locally grown ingredients. It’s a great way to get the fresh flavors of Fukushima Prefecture. There are also seasonal products available, so be sure to have a look!

The World Glassware Hall
Hot Springs

Takayu Onsen

This famous hot spring area is located at an altitude of approximately 750 meters, which is why it’s called 'taka-yu' ('taka' means 'high-up' and 'yu' means 'hot spring'). Located on the slopes of the Azuma mountain range, Takayu Onsen area was once known as “Shinobu Takayu” and, together with Zao Takayu and Shirabu Takayu, prospered as one of three Takayu in what was once known as the northern Ou region. The waters of Takayu Onsen are a bluish milky color and are thought to have healing properties. Most of the resort facilities of the area neither add water nor adjust the temperature in order to maintain the natural allure of the hot spring waters. After bathing in the waters of this spring, your skin becomes almost slippery from the high acidic and hydrogen sulfide makeup. In the Takayu Onsen area, there are 10 natural hot spring sources, with names such as 'Takinoyu', 'Netsuyu', and 'Senkinoyu'. These sources are named after old public baths. In the olden days, bathtubs were built right next to or directly above the hot spring source. Today, the bathing facilities still receive their water flowing directly from the same source. Nowadays, Takayu Onsen consists of about a dozen ryokan (traditional Japanese inns), all offering their unique charm to travelers. You’ll be pleased to note that many of the ryokan open their hot spring baths to non-staying guests for a small fee. The most famous hot spring facility in Takayu Onsen is Tamagoyu, a wooden bathhouse with a traditional feel. There’s even a foot bath in the center of the town open to the public. If public bathing isn’t something you feel comfortable with, many of the onsen facilities in the area also offer private onsen rooms with a rotenburo (open-air bath) available for your own use. It is a relaxing experience unlike any other to soak in the hot waters and feel your worries melt away.

The World Glassware Hall
Nature & Scenery

Koshidai no Sakura (The Koshidai Cherry Tree)

This huge Japanese cherry tree is over 400 years old and has been designated as a national Natural Treasure. The tree has a trunk circumference of about 7.2 meters and stands 20 meters high, and was thus selected as one of the "100 Giants of the Forest" by Japan's Forestry Agency. Koshidai Cherry Blossom Festival is held every year on May 3. A Yabusame horseback archery event accompanied by taiko drumming takes place during this festival, and local organizations set up food stalls. Photo tip: Try taking photos from the south side of cherry blossoms.

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Mt. Adatara
Nature & Scenery

Mt. Adatara

Mt. Adatara is actually made up of multiple active volcanoes that form a broad mountain. It last erupted in 1996. Poems in the book Chieko-sho by Kotaro Takamura (1883-1956) helped make the mountain famous.The summit of Mt. Adatara stands at an altitude of 1700 m, stretching about 9 kilometers in a north-to-south direction. Views of Mt. Adatara are lovely in and of themselves, but the views that visitors have of the surrounding area once they reach the summit are breathtaking. Chosen as one of Japan’s top 100 mountains, as well as one of the top 100 mountains for flowers, a view spot at an altitude of 1300 m can be accessed by gondola lift. This means that it is relatively easy to climb even for beginners.On summer evenings, a light-up event inspired by the Milky Way and the flowers of Mt. Adatara is held, gracing those scaling the mountain by a gondola lift with a spectacular view. In autumn, visitors are afforded a stunning view of autumn leaves making it a popular place for scenic momiji-gari (autumn leaf viewing).Kurogane-goya Mountain Lodge (temporarily closed as of August 2023) is a rest stop for visitors (it serves as lodging for those on long hikes). Stay here overnight to sample the lodge's famous curry, which is reserved for overnight guests only. The lodge’s public hot spring facility uses naturally-sourced, cloudy hot spring water.

Abukuma Cave
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A world of mystical beauty created over millions of years, Abukuma Cave is said to have the greatest variety and the largest number of stalactites in the whole of Asia. It takes about an hour to explore the inner world of the cave and the terrain is easy to navigate on foot.Abukuma Cave is a limestone cave that was discovered in 1969. Inside, visitors can walk the 600-meter-long path to explore and view the beautiful cave formations. Visitors can’t help but be impressed by the beauty of these natural creations formed over the course of 80 million years. The largest hall in the cave, called Takine Goten (Takine Hall), and Tsuki no Sekai (The Moon World), is illuminated with dramatic stage lighting and is particularly impressive.Also not to be missed are the rare cave formations called boxwork, you can identify them by their unique shape; thin blades of minerals coming off the walls and ceilings forming a honeycomb or box-like pattern. Abukuma Cave is the only cave in Japan with boxwork that is open to the public. Another notable stop along the cave path is the Christmas Tree and Silver Frost; both are impressive stalagmites that resemble festive holiday trees. The Christmas Tree is over two meters tall and said to be the largest example in all of Asia.There is an additional thrilling adventure course; experience crawling through narrow passages and climbing a ladder to spectacular views over the cave! This 120-meter-long course runs parallel to the main passage, but please note that visitors may have to crawl on their hands and knees at times.When you have finished exploring the mysterious depths and come back to the surface you can find plenty of restaurants and souvenir shops. Visit from mid-June to July to see the neighbouring hillside covered in 50,000 lavender plants.

Natsui Senbon-Zakura
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Natsui Senbon-Zakura

There are 1,000 Yoshino cherry blossom trees planted along both sides of the Natsui River, giving the area the name of 'Natsui Senbon-Zakura', which translates as 'Natsui's 1000 cherry trees'. The view of the river stretching out in the distance is calming. The cherry blossoms actually line the river for a distance of 5 km. Natsui Senbon-Zakura offers good spots for taking pictures. Take a walk along the promenade near the banks of the Natsui River for some beautiful shots of the contrast between the glistening river and the cherry blossoms.

Bandai-Azuma Skyline Snow Corridor
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The Bandai-Azuma Skyline is a 29-kilometer sightseeing road to the west of Fukushima City. The roadway makes for a lovely drive as it weaves its way through the Azuma Mountain Range, tying together Takayu Onsen and the Tsuchiyu Mountain Pass. It has even been nicknamed “the road that runs across the sky” as it offers such spectacular panoramic views of Fukushima City and the beautiful countryside. The road opens for the season in early April, coinciding with cherry blossom viewing season in Fukushima City. At Fukushima City's Hanamiyama, you can see the rare combination of cherry blossoms and snow in the course of a single day.

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