Bandaisan Gold Line

Bandaisan Gold Line

The Bandaisan Gold Line road connects Bandai Kogen, a highland rich with lakes diverse in shapes and size, and various alpine plants, and the Aizu area, which has an immensely rich and fascinating history.

This submontane sightseeing road offers diverse views of Mt. Bandai (known in Japanese as 'Bandai-san') and can lead visitors to either the mountain's rugged caldera or to the picturesque Lake Inawashiro.

Visitors can discover new hidden gems every time they explore the Gold Line by car, making it a very popular spot to return to among tourists and locals.

The area surrounding the road is known as a foliage-viewing spot with hairpin curves that carve through the woodlands.

On the walking trail that leads to Baya-ike, a "phantom" waterfall, visitors can take in the beauty of the landscape as they hike. The most highly recommended walking course extends from Happodai to the Oguninuma wetlands, where in late June, visitors are greeted by ban array of beautiful, broad dwarf day-lilies.

Venue Details

Venue Details
Websitehttps://www.urabandai-inf.com/en/?page_id=25023
Contact

Urabandai Tourism Association

(+81) 241-32-2349

Best Season
  • Spring
  • Summer
  • Autumn
ParkingAvailable
Related infoOpen from mid-Apr. through to mid-Nov. (The road is closed every year from mid-Nov. onwards.)
Access Details
AccessShimizudaira-6838 Sarashina, Bandai Town, Yama District, Fukushima Pref. 969-3302
View directions
Getting there

By Car: 10 min drive from Bandai-Kawahigashi I.C. exit off the Ban-etsu Expressway (Enter via Genbashi Toll Gate)

Nearby

The World Glassware Hall
Historical Sites

Enzoji Temple

A symbolic temple of Aizu, Enzoji was built about 1,300 years ago in 807. Fukuman Kokuzo Enzoji Temple (Enzoji Temple for short) was built by Tokuichi Daishi, a noted priest from the Aizu region. The main hall of the temple rises high above a huge crag. From here, the Tadami River can be viewed flowing magnificently through the town. You can also see the various views of each season, with cherry blossoms in spring, mist over the river in summer, red maples in autumn, and snow in winter. The temple has many highlights, such as a treasure house and monuments in memory of poets, inscribed with their poems and haiku. The temple is dedicated to Fukuman Kokuzo Bosatsu (the Bodhisattva of wisdom). There are many legends associated with the temple. For example, one legend tells of how when Kobo Daishi threw wood shavings from the statue of Kokuzo Bosatsu into the Tadami River, they immediately turned into countless Japanese dace fish. Another story is about how a red cow helped with the difficult construction of the temple - a story which led to the widespread acceptance of the "akabeko" red cow as an important symbol of Fukushima. One more story is that of Nanokado Hadaka Mairi ("Naked Man Festival" at Nanukado Temple). The legends are many and varied.

The World Glassware Hall
Nature & Scenery

Inawashiro Herb Garden

The breeze from the nearby Lake Inawashiro, seasonal flowers, and art displays of the Inawashiro Herb Garden await your visit! The outdoor garden area is around 100,000 square meters and is filled with various herbs, flowers, and plants that bloom at different times on the year, creating a unique visitor experience that changes with the seasons! The park has around 500 varieties or herbs, flowers, and plants including: lavender, mint, chamomile, nanohana blossoms, poppies, sunflowers, cosmos, and kochia!  There is an indoor greenhouse area, so, even on rainy days, visitors have plenty of greenery and flowers to see! In addition to the herbs, flowers, and plants you will also find seasonal decorations and original art displays that are created and updated for guests to enjoy. The outdoor garden area of the Inawashiro Herb Garden also features 5 m-tall wooden statues carved by a Canadian artist, Glen Greenside. The 12 statues, one for each zodiac sign, were carved over the course of twelve years as part of a now-discontinued annual chainsaw festival that took place at the garden. Inside, at the shop, visitors can find products and snacks that are made from various herbs and flowers.

The World Glassware Hall
Shopping & Souvenirs

Tsurugajo Kaikan

Tsurugajo Kaikan is a shopping complex next to Tsurugajo Castle. Here you can try local cuisine, from Wappa Meshi and Sauce Katsudon, to soba noodles and Kitakata Ramen. The French restaurant "Racines" is also on the premises, so that both Japanese and western-style cuisines can be enjoyed in one location. The restaurants have seating for approximately 1,000 guests. The first floor contains a tax-free shop that sells local Aizu goods and souvenirs, from ready-to-cook Kitakata Ramen, soba noodles, Japanese pickles, and sweet treats, to traditional crafts like Akabeko lucky red cow. You can even try painting your own Akabeko cow (a traditional folk toy which is said to bring luck), and take it home as a souvenir of your trip. Painting an Akabeko takes about 30 minutes, and a reservation is required for groups. The parking area accommodates full-size buses as well as personal vehicles.  

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Kannonji-gawa River Cherry Trees
Nature & Scenery

Kannonji-gawa River Cherry Trees

Only a one-minute walk north of Kawageta Station (JR Ban-etsu West Line) is this beautiful 1 km-path along the banks of the Kannonji-gawa River. In the spring the path transforms into a spectacular tunnel of Yoshino cherry trees and weeping cherry trees. Kannonji-gawa River is perhaps the most fantastic place to see cherry blossoms in Fukushima Prefecture; the calming river and the lovely petals falling like snow are a sight that can’t be beat. The lush green bank contrasting with the pale pink blossoms creates an unforgettable scene. Altogether there are about 200 trees growing along the Kannonji-gawa River on both banks. Additionally, the river maintains its natural curves and bends as it hasn’t undergone any work to adapt its shape to the city surrounding it. It’s one of Fukushima’s most splendid and respected natural landscapes. Currently, the Kannonji-gawa River cherry trees rank number 11 of the best places to see cherry blossoms in the entire Tohoku region! While enjoying the delicate blossoms and the sweet, fresh air, visitors to Kannonji-gawa River can also enjoy some of the tasty food from street vendors available only during the cherry blossom season. We’d really recommend a springtime picnic right on the river bank with various yatai (food stand) delicacies. Be sure to come back during the evening when the trees are illuminated, and the river transforms into a magical dreamscape.

Goshiki-numa Ponds
Nature & Scenery

Goshiki-numa Ponds

The Goshiki-numa ponds of Urabandai are a cluster of five volcanic lakes at the foot of Mt. Bandai. When Mt. Bandai erupted in 1888, Goshiki-numa - which translates as "Five-Colored Ponds - were formed. In actuality dozens of lakes were created due to the 1888 eruption, but the Goshiki-numa Ponds are the most famous. It was thanks to the eruption that the lakes each took on rich color; the various minerals found in each lake give them a unique color and create a mystical aura. The colors of the Goshiki-numa Ponds also change throughout the year depending on weather and time of day, a truly mysterious phenomenon. The lakes have become a popular tourist destination. The five main lakes are Bishamon, Aka, Ao, Benten, and Midoro, and their colors range from a lime green to deep turquoise to a topaz blue. A scenic walking route guides visitors around the ponds. At 3.6 km in length, this walking route - which will take you past many of the ethereal colors - takes about 70 minutes to complete. If you’d like a view of all five lakes at once, why not take the 4 km walking trail from Bishamon-numa (largest of the five lakes) up to nearby Lake Hibara. Alternatively, if hiking is not on your itinerary, enjoy a simple rowboat out on Bishamon-numa. It’s especially lovely in autumn as the color of the autumn leaves reflects on the deep green surface of the lake. In winter, there are even snowshoe trekking tours offered. The color of the lakes looks particularly vivid in winter, seeing as the minerals in some of the lakes stop them from freezing over, meaning you can see their colors contrasted with the white of the snow. Be sure to stop by the Urabandai Visitor Center, which is a large and well-equipped facility. You can find great information here about tours as well as the various geography, wildlife, and even the history of the area. It’s a great chance to learn more about the ecosystem that makes up the Goshiki-numa Ponds.

Urabandai Highlands
Nature & Scenery

Urabandai Highlands

The Urabandai highlands of northern Fukushima Prefecture, are situated at an altitude of 800 meters and surrounded by Mt. Bandai, Mt. Adatara, and Mt. Azuma. The highlands were created by Mt. Bandai erupting in 1888. Urabandai is part of Bandai Asahi National Park and offers a variety of seasonal attractions. Cool weather in summer and deep snow in winter make Urabandai a perfect place for both indoor and outdoor enjoyment. About 300 lakes and ponds, including the Goshiki-numa Ponds and Lake Hibara, are scattered across Urabandai. The harmonious beauty of nature created by the abundant woodlands and lakes will certainly touch the hearts of all visitors.

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