Watching the changing seasons is truly an awesome sight to behold; as the air starts to change from cool to crisply cold and leaves change colors in preparation for the winter. Japan is one of the wondrous places to be when the endless feast of yellow, red, brown or orange leafage from the beautiful trees of the countryside starts to fall. Autumn tourists flock to the best places for viewing autumn leaves in Japan. The breathtaking changing of foliage, the once bright green turns to different colors of earthly Hues.

Some of Japan’s most scenic foliage viewing sites are located in Hokkaido’s great national parks, Tokyo and Fuji’s nature gardens, Tochigi and Kyoto and much more. Here are some of the best destinations to take in the view of the fall season:

Nasu Kogen in Tochigi Prefecture

During fall, treat yourself to a display of some of the most colorful reds, oranges, browns and deep greens of the season at Nasu. Visit Mt. Chausu, Mt. Asahi, Mat. Kimen, or Mt. Nasudake for breathtaking natural spectacles as the forests are covered by many colors. Or you can also visit the Ubagahara Fields for exhilarating walking tours to view the colors of autumn.

Nikko Area in Tochigi Prefecture

The vicinities of Nikko are probably the best places for viewing autumn leaves in Japan owing to amazing foliage. No wonder autumn is Nikko’s favorite and best season.  There are shrines in the wooded areas that are surrounded by the enthralling colors. Experience the best of Japan when you come during fall to Nikko.

Nagatoro in Saitama Prefecture

Experience Nagatoro autumn through different hiking routes.

Nagatoro Autumn is an inspiration to many artists. From Flickr

There are hiking routes for those who want to partake of the beauty that Nagatoro’s autumn leaves have to offer. Those who come here include haiku poets and philosophers because of the changing colors, that starts in October and reaches a high of colors in November, become clearly a strong inspiration to many an artist.

Asahidake in Hokkaido

One of the loveliest views a visitor or a local may find in Japan are the changing colors of Asahidake during fall.  From a cable car, one could view the breathtaking scenery from up the air over by the snow-capped Asahidake. Near November, when it starts to be covered with snow, the view near the Ropeway’s summit station is enchanting.

Mt. Takao in Tokyo

Tourists flock to Mt. Takao’s leaf-watching spots where Autumn colors cover the ground.

Autumn leaves create a soft cover for the ground. From Flickr

You don’t need to go too far when autumn arrives in Tokyo; tourists flock to Mt. Takao’s leaf-watching spots where the Koyo or Autumn color front creates a soft cover for the ground below. Mt. Takao is actually only about half an hour from Shinjuku by train, from the city proper. It is the reason to be in Tokyo during the fall season.

Shinjuku Gyoen in Tokyo

Feel blessed as you watch the progression of the Autumn season at Shinjuku Gyoen.

The Shinjuku gardens are adorned by yellow-green Cherry Blossoms during autumn. From Flickr

For a local who is able to witness the progression of the autumn season where green becomes adorned by the Momiji colors of Japanese maple, he will feel blessed indeed.  The beautiful Shinjuku gardens are adorned by yellow-green Cherry Blossoms during the three months from October to December that has thick foliage.

Zenrinji Eikando in Kyoto

Contemplate on nature's beauty as you walk around Zenrinji.

Lift the spirit by taking a quiet walk on the Temple grounds. From Wikimedia

The true beauty of Kyoto’s gardens will be found in Zenrinji during the autumn season when an autumn leaf hunter will want to take a quiet walk in awe of nature’s great beauty. A true nature lover will look for the Eikan-do Temple where 3,000 maple trees have been planted within its precincts to create a spectacular scenery.

Oirase Gorge in Aomori Prefecture

The vibrant Oirase River Gorge is one of Japan’s most spirited rivers that come to life during Autumn because of its thick and spectacular red and yellow foliage. To really view the leaves of the trees around the gorge, one may go to Oirase’s hiking trail and be rewarded by its impressive autumn views.

Tateyama Kurobe in Toyama Prefecture

Tateyama Kurobe at the Toyama Prefecture is filled with amazing autumn scenery particularly along the Alpine route. The change is visible to an Autumn Leaf Hunter who will notice that colors change from higher areas down to the foot of the mountain. Green leaves at the foot of the mountain, red near the center, and a snowcap makes these autumn moments unforgettable.

Kamikochi in Nagano Prefecture

A walk along the river is the best way to enjoy the changing season at Kamikochi

Stroll along the river to view magnificent trees with golden leaves. From Flickr


Cable rides offer spectacular views of Kamikochi where red, yellow, orange and even pink colors appear during autumn. The best way to enjoy the changing colors is to take a stroll along the river to view the very tall trees with golden leaves that peak around the middle of October.  From the mountaintops, the view is spectacular.


Thumbnail image is from Flickr