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Sightseeing
Mizukizawa Tennenrin Native Forest
Mizukizawa Tennenrin is an 82ha virgin forest, stretching along one of the head waters of the Kiso River in the Mizukizawa district.
There are coniferous trees such as Kiso Cypresses (Hinoki) and Sawara Cypresses which are over 200 years old. Also there are broad-leaved trees such as Japanese Beech trees and Evergreen Oaks. A forest having both coniferous and broad-leaved trees is very rare in Japan, making this forest an even more treasured asset. A 550-year-old Sawara cypress tree can be seen in this forest which having a 2.5m diameter trunk is a breath taking sight.
There are 2 trekking routes through the forest, one named, 'Taiko-no-mori' (The Ancient Forest) and the other 'Genshi- no-mori' (The Prehistoric Forest). Each route is about 3km long, and paved with wood chips, which makes for easy trekking. At the edge of the forest is a waterfall, 'Tokonami-no-taki'. The water cascades down its total drop of about 20m like a stair case.
Starting from Mizukizawa Tennenrin forest, there are several trekking routes which connect to the Tokonami-no-taki waterfall, offering visitors a choice of trekking routes to suit.
In June 2008, Mizukizawa Tennenrin was selected to be included on the list of 'The 100 best water features of the Heisei Period''.
Mizukizawa Tennenrin Native ForestMizukizawa Tennenrin Native ForestMizukizawa Tennenrin Native Forest
Yabuhara Kogen (Plateau) Ski Resort
A world of snow surrounded by the vast nature of Okugiso
Enjoy skiing on genuine powder snow at this ski area, conveniently located just 10 minutes from National Route 19.
There are 13 different courses to choose from on the north-facing slope, with a 600-meter altitude difference and a long run totaling 3,600 meters in distance. Yabuhara Kogen Ski Area boasts a long history and has been a favorite destination for generations of skiers for nearly 100 years, since its opening in 1931. Please enjoy a spectacular time on these exquisite slopes.
Yabuhara Kogen (Plateau) Ski ResortYabuhara Kogen (Plateau) Ski Resort
Yabuhara Kogen Kodama-no-mori
A no-hassle resort at an altitude of 1,000 meters on the Yabuhara Plateau
Surrounded by the magnificent nature of Okugiso, Kodama no Mori offers a wide range of facilities, including camping and other activities, that both adults and children can enjoy to the fullest, while also letting visitors have a full-body experience of the changing seasons.
During your visit you can play in the park, walk through the giant maze, go biking or canoeing, and have a great time with the whole family.
Yabuhara Kogen Kodama-no-moriYabuhara Kogen Kodama-no-moriYabuhara Kogen Kodama-no-mori
Kiso River
Lake Okukiso(Misogawa Dam)
Lake Okugiso is a lake created by the dam at the source of the Kiso River. There are no houses upstream, and the water is crisp and cold when you drink it, making this a prime location to enjoy "scenic beauty." It is a quiet lake in the mountains, nestled in Okugiso, that provides the water supply to the Owari area. In 2002, the dam was listed among those having the best water quality in Japan. The lake serves as a stage for every season, with the fresh greenery of Japanese larch trees in spring, cool air and starry skies in summer, the bold colors of the turning leaves in autumn, and a dazzling silver world in winter. From Yanza-one Park, located on the high ground on the right bank, you can see both the dam and Lake Okugiso at the same time. It is also a spot where you can see the majestic Mt. Kisokomagatake of the Central Japan Alps from the lake any time of year.
Lake Okukiso(Misogawa Dam)Lake Okukiso(Misogawa Dam)
Nakasendo Torii Touge Pass・Yabuhara-juku
In the old days, the route of the Nakasendo between Yabuhara-juku and Narai-juku, which was approximately 6km in length, passed through the Torii Touge Pass. It was a part of the important Edo Period Nakasendo route, but was a particularly difficult part for travelers of that time. This old mountain route has become popular amongst travelers of this era also as a beautiful trekking route.
Mt. Ontake and Mt. Kisokomagatake can be seen from the peak of the pass, and many stones with haiku poems by poets such as Matsuo Basho, a well known haiku poet of Edo Period, and others can be found along the side of the road as well as stone statues of Buddha.
Since the old days, production of traditional Japanese combs was prolific in Yabuhara-juku, which is known as the home of Oroku-kushi (Oroku combs).
Tools for making combs and the combs are preserved and on display at the Kisomura Museum.
Nakasendo Torii Touge PassYabuhara-jukuOrokugushi
Enmusubi-jinja (Shrine)
The only shrine in Japan bearing the name "Enmusubi" (matchmaking). It is also known as a “power spot” for romance, as there is a folk tale in the village about a couple who fell in love with each other despite being of different social classes and eloped. The red torii gate standing in the winter snow is also a sight to behold. Goshuin (sacred red seal) and other products are also available at the shrine.
Nakasendo Torii Touge Pass   
Orokugushi Combs
Orokugushi combs are skillfully handmade products made by craftsmen using natural Minebari wood. The combs have a practical design with around 100 teeth ground in a width of less than 10 centimeters. Being made of natural wood, it does not generate static electricity, keeps your hair from spreading, and also moisturizes your hair and adds shine to each strand with the oils contained in the wood and its fine-toothed design, leaving your hair feeling incredibly smooth. The combs are available in various shapes and sizes, and custom-made combs can also be made according to the individual's hair texture and purpose. These combs have just the right firmness that make them difficult to break and also provide a massaging effect on the skin. This classic traditional Japanese craft boasts a 300-year history.
Nakasendo Torii Touge PassYabuhara-juku
Suge Odaira Onsui Reservoir(Ayame Park Pond)
Also known as Ayame Park Pond, this reservoir has been selected as one of the top 100 reservoirs in Japan. About 3,000 Ayame (irises) bloom here every year, and are in full bloom from June to early July. The vicinity is rich in nature, with various plants, insects, and wild birds, making it a great place to observe nature in every season. It is a popular spot for fishing, birdwatching, and leisurely strolls as well. It is also the home of the white-throated needletail, which has the fastest flight speed of any bird.
Nakasendo Torii Touge PassYabuhara-juku
Spectacular Natural Scenery
The Weeping Cherry Tree of Tanoue Kannon-do Hall
Shidare-zakura (weeping cherry blossom tree) of Tanoue Kannondo TempleThis cherry tree on the grounds of Tanoue Kannon-do Hall is estimated to be several hundred years old. When its light pink blossoms are in full bloom, the sight of this tree, a tree of graceful appearance, with the thatched roof of the temple hall beside it, is truly a superb spectacle.
The Edohigan Cherry Tree of Juo-do Hall
Edo-higan-zakura of Jyuo-do TempleThis cherry tree stands on the embankment in front of Juo-do Hall, its great branches extending out over the hall and the local road. This tree is estimated to be several hundred years old. In spring, this well-shaped tree blooms before the other cherry trees in this rural landscape of farmsteads and mountainsides and creates a wonderful spectacle when in full bloom, filling the sky with light pink blossoms when standing below it.
The Giant Maple Tree at Tenkosha Shrine
Edo-higan-zakura of Jyuo-do TempleThis maple tree is located on the grounds of Tenkosha Shrine, in the foothills below Torii Pass. The forest around this shrine has been called Daijingu no Mori (The Great Shrine Forest) since ancient times, and is said to have become renowned because of the old maple trees lining the roadway. These days, however, the forest is looking a bit thin. There is only one tree along the road, with a sacred rope wrapped around its trunk to make it look even more stately, and the colors of its turning leaves in autumn are especially beautiful.
The Japanese Red Maple in Hananoki
Edo-higan-zakura of Jyuo-do TempleThis rare tree is a species unique to Japan and only grows in a limited area of the country. The tree is said to have been planted around 1927 in region bearing its name, hananoki. The area where it stands is also the site of the former Ogiso Branch School. It is a treasured tree that could be described as a living monument and symbol of the local area. It is a vibrant tree, with crimson blooms in spring and leaves that turn a fiery red in autumn.
The Weeping Chestnut in Odaira
This cherry tree stands on the embankment in front of Juo-do Hall, its great branches extending out over the hall and the local road. This tree is estimated to be several hundred years old. In spring, this well-shaped tree blooms before the other cherry trees in this rural landscape of farmsteads and mountainsides and creates a wonderful spectacle when in full bloom, filling the sky with light pink blossoms when standing below it.
令和3年度長野県地域発元気づくり支援金を活用して翻訳事業を実施しました。

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