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10 National Parks In Japan To Delight The Wildlife Fanatic Inside You!

Do you have an adventure on your mind and are looking to indulge in a range of activities such as whale watching, scuba diving, hiking and soaking in hot springs? What if we told you can do all of this and more when you visit these fabulous national parks in Japan!

The national parks of Japan are famous for their unique habitats, terrain, and stunning locations, which offer the country’s most beautiful sights. From dense forests, mountains, volcanoes and beautiful lakes, these national parks and nature reserves in Japan have it all.

To make things easier, we’ve made a list of ten national parks in Japan that you shouldn’t miss out on. So, scroll down to know some of the best ones that are definitely worthy of a visit.

1. Yoshino Kumano National Park

Yoshino Kumano National Park

Yoshino Kumano National Park is located in the Kansai region. It also has 2 UNESCO World Heritage Sites, which include Mount Yoshino and the Kumano Region. Mount Yoshino is home to more than 30,000 cherry blossom trees, which makes this one of the most beautiful cherry blossom viewpoints.

You can easily spend 2-3 days here just indulging in a range of activities such as scuba diving, visiting the Kumano Hongu Spa Village, seeing the Kumano-Nachi Taisha Shrine by the Nachi Falls or going on refreshing nature walks in the morning. So, make sure you add Yoshino Kumano National Park to your list of national parks in Japan to visit.

Location: Nara Prefecture, Japan
Timings: Open 24 hours

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2. Ogasawara National Park

Ogasawara National Park

The Ogasawara islands hold the prestigious title of being one of UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites in Japan. The site is spread out over 1,000 km along the southern region of Tokyo, by the Pacific Ocean. This subtropical haven is home to unique plants and marine life that are only found in Ogasawara National Park.

You can spend the day spotting Indian Ocean Bottlenose Dolphins, Humpback Whale watching and also see a few Green Turtles swim in their natural habitat. There are many scuba diving spots and snorkeling areas where you spend hours exploring the coral reefs and its thriving marine life.

Location: Chichijima, Ogasawara, Tokyo, Japan
Timings: Open 24 hours

3. Sanin Kaigan National Park

Sanin Kaigan National Park

The beautiful Sanin Kaigan National Park is the center point of the Sanin Kaigan Geopark. This park is known to feature some of the most diversified terrains, which date back to the actual formation of the famous Sea of Japan. Some of the main attractions here include igneous rock formations, rare natural sites, glistening sand dunes and breathtaking cliff points and caves.

You can also explore other activities such as paragliding, cycling, sea kayaking and trekking. You can also choose to spend time admiring and exploring countless stunning sites during your visit.

Location: Oshima, Toyooka, Hyōgo Prefecture

4. Akan National Park

Akan National Park

Akan National Park is home to dense forests of Sakhalin, volcanic peaks, huge caldera lakes and of course the mountains. Akan National Park has 3 lakes located inside the park Lake Akan, Lake Mashu and Lake Kussharo, out of which, Lake Mashu is known to have the clearest water in the whole world.

Akan National Park is divided into two separate regions. The western region has Lake Akan, along with a lakeside hot spring resort, while the larger eastern part contains the remaining lakes Lake Mahsu and Lake Kussharo (Sulfur Mountain).

Hiking is one of the star attractions of Akan National Park, which draws in hikers from all around the world. You can also enjoy a small picnic while watching the sunset from one of the many viewing points inside the park. Almost every nook and corner of the park offers some of the most beautiful views, which you can’t help but admire.

Location: 1 Chome-1-1 Kancho Akankoonsen, Kushiro, Hokkaido

5. Nikko National Park

Nikko National Park

Nikko National Park is located in the Kanto region, which is very easily accessible from Tokyo. It is also one of UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites, which features historic shrines such as the Toshogu Shrine; amongst the most decorated shrines in Japan. There are many ways to spend time here. You can start by visiting the waterfalls, admiring nature, going on refreshing morning walks and also taking a dip in the onsens.

You can also see the statues of the famous three wise monkeys, visit the Hall of the Medicine Buddha and the Yomeimon Gate. Nikko National Park is definitely worth a visit during autumn, as this is when the green leaves change their colors from green to deeper hues of red and orange.

Location: Honshu, Kanto Region, Japan

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6. Yakushima National Park

Yakushima National Park

If you are a true nature lover and enjoy your time admiring every sight and sound which you come across, then Yakushima National Park is meant for you. This national park is home to some of the oldest living trees in Japan.

The most famous of them all is Jomon Sugi, which is an enormous cedar tree that is supposed to be 7,000 years old. The foggy nature walks in the morning are definitely a sight to behold as you make your way to see the ancient Jomon Sugi. You can also spend your time by indulging in eco-tours, go hiking, scuba diving, snorkeling or camp out in the wild.

Location: Kumage District, Kagoshima Prefecture, Japan

7. Fuji Hakone Izu National Park

National Park And River View

Fuji is truly a gift from nature, which makes this one of the most popular national parks in Japan, visited by tourists from across the globe. Hakone is famous for its ancient history, beautiful shrines and the famous hot springs. You will never run out of things to do during your visit, from mountain climbing to hiking, going on nature walks, sunbathing on sandy beaches or relaxing in an onsen, Fuji Hakone Izu National Park has it all.

Location: Fuji Hakone Izu National Park, Shizuoka Prefecture, Japan

8. Towada Hachimantai National Park

Towada Hachimantai National Park

The Towada Hachimantai National Park is situated in the Tohoku Region. This amazing national park is known for its mountain streams, volcanoes and lakes, which are some of the star attractions of the Towada Hachimantai National Park. The Hachimantai area has 40 volcanoes spread-out through the national park.

There are also many regions in the park from where you can vapor gases coming out of the volcanoes. Towada Hachimantai National Park is considered to be a prime location for viewing the extravagant display of the colorful fall foliage. You can also enjoy camping out, going on nature walks and also try mountain climbing.

If you are visiting the park in winter, then you can try out Snowshoe trekking, which can be thoroughly enjoyed by any age group. If you want to spend more time at the national park, there are many hotels and ryokans which would be glad to accommodate you.

Location: Iwatesan, Takizawa, Iwate Prefecture, Japan

9. Kirishima-Kinkowan National Park


If you are looking to see live volcanoes in action, then you should definitely pay Kirishima-Kinkowan National Park a visit. The volcanoes can be found in the Kinkowan Sakurajima area, and the rest of the Kirishima Coast is perfect to go hiking.

After finishing a refreshing hike in the morning, you can spend your evening soaking in the billowing steam of the onsen water. Scenic views of the mountains, volcanoes, blue water and the wildlife are just a couple of reasons, why you shouldn’t miss visiting this national park in Japan.

Location: Kirishima, Kagoshima Prefecture, Japan
Timings: Open 24 hours

10. Shiretoko National Park


Shiretoko National Park is located on the island of Hokkaido, which holds the title of a UNESCO World Heritage Site since the year 2005. One of the star attractions of this park is the large population of Brown Bears, making Shiretoko National Park one of the most popular national parks in Japan to visit.

During the summer, you can take part in activities like watching Brown Bears from the sightseeing boats and during winter time, you can try your hand out at drift ice activity. The roads inside the park only cover one-third of what the park has to offer, the remaining parts of the park are open for people to explore by foot or from a boat.

Location: Hokkaido, Menashi District, Japan
Timings: Open 24 hours

Every national park in Japan gives nature enthusiasts the opportunity to explore nature at its finest. So, don’t wait any longer to explore all the above-mentioned national parks in this beautiful country. Take a trip to Japan at the earliest and unveil what lies in these wild corners with your adventure-hungry pals!

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