If you are looking for some great hiking destination near Tokyo, then you should definitely consider visiting Mount Fuji. It is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Japan. There are many trails leading up to the summit of this mountain. Some of them can be quite challenging and require good physical fitness. But if you want to see the beauty of nature at its finest, then there is no better place to go.
The 17 Best Hiking Destinations Around Tokyo
1. Mount Kōbō
This is a very famous hike that takes about 6 hours to complete. The hiking trail starts at the town of Hakone and ends at Lake Ashi in Tokyo. This is an easy hike, but it requires some stamina as well. You will have to climb over several mountains and pass-through various valleys along the way. At times, you might even find yourself walking on the side of cliffs. In addition to this, you will also get a chance to enjoy beautiful views of the surrounding lakes and mountains. So, if you like walking long distances or you just love hiking, then this is the perfect spot for you!
The best time to visit Mount Kōbō is between April and October. During winter, the temperature may drop to -10 degrees Celsius. So, make sure to pack warm clothes.
2. Lake Ashino
The lake is located just 20 minutes away from Hakone-Yumoto Station. The entire area has been designated as a national park. The hike here is not too difficult, but it does take some effort. The trail passes by beautiful lakeside scenery.
You can reach the lake by taking the Keifuku Electric Railway line towards Fujinomiya. Once you get off the train, you can follow the signs pointing to Lake Ashino.
If you want some peace and quiet, look no further than Kawaguchiko-Sarasawa. Located 40 minutes outside of Sapporo, this small fishing village sits right on Lake Kawaguchi. The town itself has few shops and restaurants and only a couple of hotels and inns. But what makes Kawaguchiko-Sarsawa special is its beautiful natural setting. There are plenty of trails for hiking, and there are two beautiful hot springs located just outside of the village. Take a trip to see these tranquil waters for yourself!
The best season to visit Kawaguchiko is during spring, when the weather is mild. However, if you prefer experiencing snowfall instead, you can travel to the village any time of year because the conditions aren’t really affected by the climate.
4. Mount Tsukuba
A great ski destination, Mount Tsukuba has been at the heart of skiing in Japan since 1936, when the first permanent chairlift was installed here. Today, there are three main lifts serving the slopes, including a gondola, which makes the ascent far less strenuous than walking. There are three main runs that you should try out: the East Ridge (the longest at 1 km), the West Ridge (with the highest elevation) and the North Peak (which offers the best views). Skiing here is not expensive and beginners can expect to pay around 1,000 per day. For further info, visit our article on skiing at Mt. Tsukuba.
There’s more to do in the region aside from skiing, such as visiting the Onsen. It’s customary to spend the night after visiting one of these wonderful hot springs.
Tsukuba is located approximately 50 minutes south of Tokyo by high-speed train. If you’re driving, head towards the Iidabashi exit of the Tokyo Narita Airport Express Line and continue to Kusatsu.
Nearest station: Tsukuba Station. From this station, buses run to the various points on the mountain.
5. Mount Takao
Mount Takao offers hikers many things, including a unique view of Mt. Fuji and a chance to see monkeys. There are plenty of hiking options available on this mountain in Tokyo. Take a look at some of our favorite hikes here.
The easiest hike is the Omotesando trail. It’s wide and well maintained, so you don’t have to worry about getting lost. It is short, though, taking only 90 minutes from the base to the top. The Kasumido loop route is also easy, although it does require some climbing, and takes around 2 hours. The Biwa waterfall trail is a bit longer than the others and is more challenging because of its steep climbs and descents. But you should be able to complete it in 3 hours.
In terms of sights, there’s not much to see at the top of Mt. Takao. However, visitors can enjoy views of Honshu and Shikoku. There are many trails through the forested area around the peak. Some of these leads down towards the coast. These include the Sanko Pass, which is part of Japan’s Great Kiso Route. The route starts near Nagoya and ends in Yokohama. It passes by several scenic spots, including the Fujiya River Gorge.
Take the Keio Line train to Takasakiguchi Station. There, you can either hike up the mountain (2 hours round trip) or take a combination of cable car rides and colorful open ropeways (like ski-lifts) to reach the top of Mount Ibuki. Deposits at this point cost around 490 per person one way.
6. Mount Nokogiri
While hiking, Nokogiri’s main attraction is the view of Mount Fuji. Most hikers head straight up to the summit, which is why there are so many people there. However, you can combine this trip with another hike by taking one of the side paths towards the peak. These routes lead past several scenic areas, including the Mt. Fuji Shrine. Either way, you’ll be rewarded with some incredible views.
The ShariKimiichi Route and the Kanto FuraeNo Michi Route begin near the same point. Both routes have steep staircases leading up to the summit, which can be challenging. However, the views from the top are breathtaking. Hiking is another popular activity here. There are large boulders along the footpath. These were used by woodcutters to move the logs down the mountainside. They also created caves underneath the rocks. These caves became Buddhist meditation retreats. There are several temples located throughout the area. In addition, there are many small waterfalls nearby.
Nearest station: Kamiyacho. From the Yokohoma area, you can travel by train to Keikyukai-Hachimantai Station, then catch a bus to the port. There is a direct ferry service from Hachiman-Taito Port to Shimo-Imaizumi Station.
7. Mount Mitake
Located in mi City, Tokyo, Mt. Mitake is the home of Mitake Shrine, which has been around for over two thousand years. Famous for its many bird species, this mountain offers visitors a chance to see more than thirty different kinds of birds. Visitors can also enjoy beautiful flowers, clear streams, and water falls. In addition, there are many hiking trails that lead to breathtaking views. To really experience all the beauty of this area, make sure to book a room at one of these hotels near Mt. Mitake.
Yes, there are several hiking trails near Kiyosato Station. One trail leads to the Mitake Shrine (about 1 hr). Another trail leads to the “Rock Garden” (about 2 hrs). Both hikes require some walking uphill, so be prepared!
From the temple, return by bus to Hakone city. Take a cable car up to the peak of Mt. Hakone, which has views of Lake Ashi and the surrounding area. Return to Tokyo via train.
When traveling to Mount Mitake, there are two options. First, you can take the train directly to Mitake Station. Second, you can take the bus from Tokyo Station, which costs around 500 one way. Alternatively, you can hike up the mountain following the path indicated above.
8. Kamakura trails
Although hiking up Mount Fuji isn’t everyone’s idea of fun, there are plenty of alternatives in Kamakura. Three popular hikes include the Western Daibutsu, the Northern Tenen and the Eastern Gion Hikes. Each offers unique views and scenery. The Western Daibutsu hike starts at the famous Kaminarimon Gate and leads to the Daibutsu statue. The Northern Tenen hike begins near the Kamakura Railway Station and ends at the temple of Tenjinsha Temple. Finally, the Eastern Gion Hike goes through the town of Gion before ending at the Honjin area.
The Daibutsu hiking course can be done in a single day. The Tenen hiking course takes around 90 minutes. The Gionyama hiking course is only 30 minutes. So doing all three courses in a single day isn’t impossible at all. But I wouldn’t recommend it unless you have plenty of time on your hands. Doing so would mean skipping out on some relaxing time at the beach.
There are many trails at Kita-Kamakura Forest Park. We recommend starting with the “Tsurugaoka Hachiman” trail. This is a short (1 km) hike through a forested area. It begins near Tsurugaoka Hachimangu Shrine, which was founded by Emperor Shmu in 781 AD.
8. Mount Jinba
Mt. Jinba can certainly offer beautiful views, particularly during the winter when snow blankets its slopes. However, this isn’t the easiest mountain to climb. There are many steep sections and numerous steps throughout the trail. Be sure to bring hiking shoes. Also remember that there are no facilities at the top, so make sure you have everything you might need before starting out.
It’s no secret that hiking is one of my favorite pastimes. I love exploring new places and seeing what nature has to offer. In Japan, there are many beautiful hikes to be found. One such trail is the Mount Takao Ridge Trail. Hikers can enjoy stunning views of Mount Fuji along the way. Along the way, hikers can stop at various mountain huts to grab a bite to eat.
Both routes offer spectacular views, but I prefer option #1 because it saves me a bit of hiking. From JR Fujino station, follow signs for “Mt. Jimba” (10 minutes). At the top, you’ll find a trailhead for the “Jimba Trail.” After you’ve hiked up the mountain, you’ll see a sign for the “Summit Cable Car,” which takes you directly to the top of Mt. Takao. There are many nice restaurants near the summit, so this is definitely one of my favorite hikes.
Take the train to Fujino Station (JR Fujino). From there, follow the signs for the mountain trail. It should be less than 20 minutes’ walk.
9. Mount Mitsumine
The Chichibu region of Japan is home to many interesting hikes. Whether you’d like to spend time at one of the natural hot springs or explore the mountainside, this part of Japan is a wonderful place to hike.
There are numerous trails throughout the region, including the popular Chichi no Mori Trail, which leads hikers through the beautiful forested areas. The most challenging route, however, is the Sounzan Trail. It starts off steeply and then climbs up the mountainside before leading to the summit. Be sure to check out the Chichibu Park website for more details about these trails.
The full trail is approximately five (5) hours long. There aren’t many restaurants along the route, so be sure to pack your own food.
Nearby attractions: Take a look at this page before you depart. It lists some nearby things to see and do. If you have more questions, feel free to ask us!
10. Mount Ōyama
Mount Ōyama offers visitors a number of different options when it comes to riding the mountain’s trails. Whether you’d like to hike up, ride down, or just cruise around, there’s a path for everyone. You can also opt to simply ride the cable car and watch the scenery go by below.
Both hikes offer incredible views. However, the Yabitsu-toge pass trail offers more variety. There are several temples along the way that have interesting stories behind them. On top of this, there are plenty of opportunities to stop and enjoy the view.
At first glance, the “women’s trail” might seem inferior compared to the men’s route. However, there are several advantages that make up for this shortcoming. First, female hikers have access to the entire mountain after climbing Mt. Ōyamaguchi. Second, there is no steep ascent at all on the women’s route. Third, the views along the path are spectacular! Lastly, the walk through the forest makes the experience truly unique.
Nearby train stations: Keisei Ueno (JR) Station: 5 minutes by foot. Take the JR line towards Tokyo. Exit at Isehara Station. Keisei Oimachi (Keisei Electric Railway) Station: 15 minutes by foot. Take a train towards Narita Airport. Get off at Isehara station. Then walk 10 minutes to the trailhead.
Nearest bus stop: Nishi-Isehara Bus Stop, 30 seconds by foot. Take the No. 462 bus from Shinjuku Station. Get off at Iwasakiji-koen. Walk 10 minutes to the trail head.
11. Mount Kawanori
Mt. Kawanori is one of Japan’s most popular hikes. Its popularity has grown over the past few decades due to its accessibility, beautiful scenery, and varied terrain. Although there are many trails leading to the summit, hikers should only attempt this hike during the warmer seasons when snow melts quickly. During wintertime, when temperatures drop below freezing, the mountain becomes covered in ice and may become inaccessible.
There are many risks involved when hiking up Mount Kawanori in Tokyo. For one thing, the trail is not maintained by anyone. In addition, there are several steep ascents and descents along the route. The hike is also quite strenuous. Be sure to bring plenty of water and snacks and wear comfortable shoes.
There are several options for getting to the start of the trail. I recommend taking a taxi (about 800) or riding the train to Okutama Station and then taking a bus to Kawanobashi Bus Stop (150).
12. Mitake-Mt. Okutama-Mt. Hinode
Climbing three mountains in a single day may sound like a bit of overkill, but this three-mountain hike is actually fairly straightforward. Combine Mt. Nokogiria, Mt. Takeshima, and Mt. Mitake for a challenging trek that offers incredible views. While the route starts out rather steep at first, it becomes easier after reaching the ridge.
Climbing can be tiring, but it doesn’t have to be difficult. In fact, most climbers find that the hardest part of the sport is getting started. That said, it does require a certain amount of fitness. For starters, you should be able to climb at least 30 feet (9 m) up a wall without resting. Also, you need to be able to hold onto the rock face for extended periods of time. Lastly, you’ll need to be able to reach the top. So, if you aren’t in good physical condition, don’t expect to scale the walls easily.
There are many reasons why you should visit Mount Otagi. First, it offers some of the most spectacular views of Mt. Fuji in all directions. Second, there are numerous trails to explore, including one to the summit, which is less than half a mile away. Third, it has two hot springs near its base. Finally, it’s only 30 minutes by car from central Tokyo.
The nearest railway station is JR Okutama. Turn left out of the station and cross the river over the bridge. Head down the forest path on the left-hand side of the street and follow the signs for Mt. take and Mt. Nokogir. Note the kanji, as many signs don’t have English labels.
13. Mount Kentoku
For those who can handle a challenging trek, there’s nothing like Mount Kentoku in Yamanashiro Prefecture. The trail first leads hikers past the Kougen Hut, a pleasant spot with plenty of sika deer roaming around.
Your hiking options include spending the entire day on top of the mountain or returning via the same trail. The latter option saves you some time, but it does require a bit of extra planning. To reach the summit, you have two routes to choose between. One is a steep path that leads to a small cliff face. The other one is less strenuous, but it goes through a forest. Both routes lead to the top of the mountain. There are several trails leading up to the summit, but only one of them is open all year round.
In order to complete this hike as part of a day trip, you must start at Enzan Station. There are two options available to reach the trailhead. One option is to walk 4 kilometers (2.4 miles) along the railway line towards Nishizawa Gorge. The second option is to jump on a bus bound for Odaiba, which costs 800 one-way. Once there, you can catch another bus to Nishizawa Gorge for 400. Both routes require approximately four hours.
14. Mount Koboshigatake
Mt. Fuji has always been one of my favorite places. When I was younger, I would climb up the side of the mountain, then walk down the opposite side. I’d often stop at various points along the way to enjoy the view. It’s a beautiful place, and this mountain is no exception. There are plenty of trails around Mt. Fuji that lead to equally stunning viewpoints. However, most are not as well maintained as those leading up to Mt. Fuji proper. Therefore, we recommend using the Minshuto Shinkansen Station instead. Here, you have access to all sorts of transportation, including buses and taxis. We suggest taking the bus to Hiraoka station (there’s a sign pointing out the direction), and then walking towards the mountain until you see a large billboard. This will direct you to the right location.
The journey is certainly still possible as a short trip from Tokyo. With some planning and flexibility, it’s definitely worth making this a multi-day trek. The first day should be spent exploring the area around Mount Fuji. On the second day, head up the mountain to reach the summit. From there, you can make side trips to nearby hot springs, visit the Hirayu Falls, or explore the surrounding countryside.
The nearest train station is JR Enzan. From there, buses depart frequently for Nishizawa Gorge. There are several trails which lead up to the gorge. One of the most popular routes begins at the end of the road leading to Nishizawa Shrine.
15. Mountain Range of Yatsugatake
I’d recommend adding Yatsugatake to your list of places to visit when you travel to Japan. It’s a stand-alone, eight-peaked volcanic ridge located three hours from Tokyo by car and offers spectacular views from all directions. The highest peak, Akademi, at 2899 meters tall, is among Japan’s 100 most famous mountains. Most visitors spend a few days exploring the area around the base camp at Lake Kussharo. There are many hotels, restaurants, and snack bars available along the road leading up to the trailhead. You’ll need to bring your own food and drink with you if you want to stay overnight. If you don’t mind roughing it a little, you can pitch a tent in one of the camping areas near the lake.
There are numerous hikes which take you to different parts of the mountain range. Some of these are quite easy, while others are more challenging. For example, the shortest route takes about 2.5 hours to complete. It starts at the parking lot near the entrance gate of the park. After that, you’ll follow signs for “Yatsugatake Trail.” Along the way, you’ll pass through pine forests, shrubs, and flowers. At the end of the trail, you’ll find yourself overlooking Lake Kussharo, surrounded by snowcapped peaks.
Chino (Nakagawa) and Shimo-Imaichi () are the closest stations.Take the JR express to Nakagawa and change trains at Nagano. There are many buses to different starting points. For Akadake, take a bus to Minotoguchi Station (). At this point, you can either walk up the mountain or catch another bus.
16. Hakone Toishi National Park
Hakone Toishi National Park is a relatively new addition to our list of the best hiking destinations in Japan. Located close to Kanazawa city, this national park has an area of 827 square kilometers. This makes it one of the largest parks in Japan.
Hiking here is not only great because of its size but also because of how beautiful the scenery is. Many people come here just to enjoy the breathtaking view of Mt. Hakone.
If you’re looking for something less demanding than climbing a mountain, then this place is perfect for you. There are plenty of walking paths that go through various landscapes. These include old growth trees, clear rivers, hot springs, and lakes.
The closest station to the park is Hakone Toishi (), where you can connect with the Keifuku line. Another option is to ride the Odakyu Line to Hakone Toishi Station (). From there, it’s only 30 minutes to the park.
17. Mount Bandai
Mount Bandai is the fifth tallest volcano in Japan. It’s located in Gunma Prefecture, roughly two hours away from Tokyo. The summit reaches an altitude of 1,918 meters above sea level.
The most popular hike begins at the foot of the mountain. It’s called the “Mt. Bandai Hike” and it’s very easy. You’ll start off with a steep climb and reach the top in about four hours. Along the way, you can see several small villages and towns like Shirahama, Shingzan, and Naganuma.
Another option is to begin your hike from the base of the mountain. In this case, the total distance is approximately 15 km. It usually takes five to six hours to finish.
There are two ways to access the mountain. One is via the JR train to Shirahama Station. Then, take the Keisei Skyliner to Bandai Station. Alternatively, you can take a local train to Shirahama from Shinjuku Station.
There are no hotels near the mountain, so make sure you bring all your own supplies. If you want to stay overnight, there are some camping sites available.
What preparation and equipment do you need?
You don’t need any special equipment besides your regular hiking shoes. However, if you plan on doing this hike during the winter, you should be prepared for cold weather. Bring warm clothes and water. Also, make sure you have enough food and snacks as well.
Where should you sleep?
There are some campsites along the way. But they tend to fill up quickly during peak seasons. So, it might be better to camp somewhere closer to the mountain.
Which is the best time to visit Mount Bandai?
Spring is probably the best time to visit. During the summer, it gets really crowded. And when winter comes, the trail becomes covered with snow.
These were our recommendations for the best hiking spots in Japan. We hope these tips will help you find the right destination for your next trip.
Have fun exploring!
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Arthur Lewis is a hardcore hiker, traveler, and adventure seeker. He is a blogger and writer for “Hiking Mystery,” and he lives in New York City with his pet dog, Chipi.
He is very fond of the outdoors and has visited many countries, including Iceland, Portugal, Brazil, and Costa Rica. He also loves to explore nature by means of hiking, cycling, and kayaking. He is an expert on travel, and he helps other people find the best way to travel by providing information about their options.