Every year in spring, as the snow melts away it leaves behind the shape of a giant white rabbit on the side of Mt. Azuma-Kofuji. This snow-made rabbit is called the “seeding rabbit” and it signals to the people of Fukushima that the farming season has come. No matter when you decide to visit Mt. Azuma-Kofuji, you can always experience the beauty of this awe-inspiring natural landscape.
Mt. Azuma-Kofuji is actually an active volcano. It has an appealing symmetry to it, and a soft conical shape; it is because of these classic features that it was named Kofuji, or "little Fuji", after the iconic Japanese mountain. Thanks to the volcanic ground, the area has given birth to many nearby onsen areas which are perfect for relaxing, such as Tsuchiyu Onsen and Takayu Onsen. It’s also a great destination for those who decide to drive through the area as the Bandai-Azuma Skyline happens to pass just below the crater of Mt. Azuma-Kofuji. It’s just a short hike up to the crater and there are plenty of other great trails in the area.
Near the crater, along the roadway, stands Jododaira Visitor Center, which offers visitors a place to park, rest up, get a snack, and maybe even buy some souvenirs. It’s the perfect spot to take a break and explore one of the many short hiking routes to stretch out your muscles after a long car ride. Circle the crater of Mt. Azuma-Kofuji on a relaxed 40-minute walk and—if you’re lucky—enjoy gorgeous views of Fukushima City, Mt. Bandai, and the Urabandai area. But do watch your step as the ground can be uneven and even slippery on grey days. The mountain is open from spring to autumn every year.