Hachimantai – The Dragon Eye and Other Amazing Natural Wonders

Hachimantai (八幡平) in Towada-Hachimantai National Park (十和田八幡平国立公園) is a magnificent patch of nature on the prefectural border between Iwate (岩手) and Akita (秋田). Whilst it is said that the autumn foliage scenery is better at the Akita side of Hachimantai, the summit of Mt. Hachimantai and a lot of the natural wonders are located in Iwate prefecture.

With plenty of alpine plants, sightseeing spots with superb views of the mountains, and hot spring resorts, Hachimantai is one of the premier tourist destinations in the Iwate prefecture. Apart from the spectacular view from the summit at 1,600 meters above sea level, one of the most fascinating natural wonders at Hachimantai is the scenery called Dragon Eye (ドラゴンアイ) which can only be seen from late May to early June each year (*’▽’).

But let’s start with what to see from mid-April when the area becomes accessible to the tourists. It is recommended to reach Hachimantai by driving as it affords the flexibility to stop when desired to take photos. But, for those who prefer not to drive, there are bus services available as well which you can refer to at the end of this article.

Please click HERE to skip to Hachimantai’s transportation information.

Hachimantai Aspite Line (八幡平アスピーテライン)

The Hachimantai Aspite Line is a toll-free 27 km winding driveway across Hachimantai.

The driveway is closed in winter from early November due to heavy snow and opens back up around mid-April the next. When it opens back up, visitors can enjoy the magnificent snow corridor (which is an unintended product of preparation before the road is opened for traffic again) until around mid-May!

Hachimantai Aspite Line Snow Corridor Iwate Japan
Photo from Lake Tazawa/Kakunodate Tourism Association

If you think the road is just another highway that you can sleep through as a passenger, that is definitely NOT the case! From the fresh green in spring to the vivid colour in autumn, the driver will have a hard time keeping their attention on the road with surroundings this beautiful (´▽`*).

Below are some popular spots for you to mark on Google Maps (^_-)-☆.

Gozaisho Wetland (御在所湿原)

Photo from Hachimantai City Tourism Association

Close to the entrance of the Hachimantai Aspite Line is the Gozaisho Wetland, a treasure trove of alpine plants.

If you go in spring, 15 minutes’ walk from the car park at the trailhead of the promenade, you will see various types of flowers blooming at the sides of the track!

The 90 minutes trekking course around the Gozaisho-Numa Pond (御在所沼) and the Goshiki-Numa Pond (五色沼) is most scenic when the grass turns red from late September to early October!

If you visit the Goshiki-Numa Pond regularly, you will notice that the colour of the pond changes throughout the year (=゚ω゚)ノ. In summer, it is a pond with a beautiful cobalt blue colour, but when autumn comes, the pond will instead put on more of a golden hue!

To get to Gozaisho Wetland by public transport, you can catch either the regular bus services or the Hachimantai Shizen Sansaku Bus (八幡平自然散策バス) from JR Morioka Station (盛岡駅)’s east exit’s bus stop no. 3.

For more information, please refer to the access information to Hachimantai at the end of the article.

Hachimantai Aspite Line Observation Deck (八幡平アスピーテライン展望所)

Hachimantai Aspite Line Observation Deck is a scenic location in the middle of the Aspite line. It has a lookout that provides a view of the ridgeline of mountains such as Mt. Iwate (岩手山) and Mt. Akita-Komagatake (秋田駒ケ岳). Depending on the weather, you might even be able to see the sea of clouds!

Click HERE to get back to a list of attractions at Hachimantai.

Genta-Iwa Observation Deck (源太岩展望台)

Driving a bit further southwest, you will see this gigantic rock at the side of the road. Park your car in the parking space directly opposite the rock to find the amazing view in the second photo of the Instagram post!

Kuroyachi Marsh (黒谷地湿原)

Driving further up to the summit of Mt. Hachimantai, you will pass through the Kuroyachi Marsh.

If you have the time to spare, leave your car at the car park and take a 10 minutes’ walk to the observation area. The wooden tracks are again surrounded by alpine plants that you won’t be able to see in your daily life!

Photo from Iwate Prefecture Tourism Association

Somewhere along the promenade, there is a spot called “Kuma-no-Izumi (熊の泉)” where fresh spring water flows out. This spring water is a result of the winter snow melting and is not only safe to drink but quite delicious!

For those who love hiking, follow the wooden tracks and pass the observation area, you can hike all the way up to the summit of Mt. Hachimantain in around 2 hours.

To get to Kuroyachi Marsh by public transport, you can catch either the regular bus services or the Hachimantai Shizen Sansaku Bus (八幡平自然散策バス) from JR Morioka Station (盛岡駅)’s east exit’s bus stop no. 3.

For more information, please refer to the access information to Hachimantai at the end of the article.

Hachimantai Mikaeri Pass (見返峠)

At an altitude of 1,560 meters, Hachimantai Mikaeri Pass boasts more than just a breathtaking view. As it is also where the Hachimantai Mountaintop Rest House (八幡平山頂レストハウス) is located, it is also a convenient place to grab some food and get handy information about Towada-Hachimantai National Park.

Here, you can also catch a glimpse of a beautiful sunrise such as the one shown in the Instagram post.

Click HERE to get back to a list of attractions at Hachimantai.

Hachimantai Mountaintop Rest House (八幡平山頂レストハウス)

  • Opening Hours: 9 am to 5 pm between mid-April to early November
  • Facilities: Hachimantai information corner, toilet, resting space, souvenir shops, and restaurant (please note their broth most sauce contains fish meat extracts. To confirm with the restaurant staff, please utilise our Essential Japanese Phrases For Vegetarian article)
Photo from Hachimantai City Tourism Association

Tips: The car park at the Rest House isn’t free of charge. If you want to save some money, there is a free car park not too far from the Rest House.

Ōbukazawa Observation Deck (大深沢展望台)

A few minutes’ drive towards the west from Hachimantai Mikaeri Pass, the Ōbukazawa Observation Deck offers another panorama view of the surrounding mountains.

And how about getting some ice cream from this old lady (´▽`*)?

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Hachimantai Mountaintop Promenade (八幡平山頂散策路)

The Hachimantai Mountaintop Promenade is an easy hiking course that only takes around 1.5 hours to get back to Hachimantai Mountaintop Rest House. The trailhead is just across the road from the Rest House’s car park.

The promenade will lead to the Hachimantai Mountaintop Observation Deck (八幡平山頂展望台) and the summit of Mt. Hachimantai. Along the track, there are also a couple of gorgeous marshes, including the Kagami-Numa Marsh (鏡沼), also known as the “Dragon Eye”!

If you refer to the map in the photo, the course is marked in red (=゚ω゚)ノ.

Hachimantai mountaintop Promenade Hachimantai Iwate Japan
Photo from photo-ac.com

Hachiman-Numa Marsh (八幡沼)

Hachimantai-Marsh-Iwate-Japan
Photo from Iwate Prefecture Tourism Association

Hachiman Marsh is somewhat of a symbol of Hachimantai. As the Hachimantai Mountaintop Promenade pretty much goes around this marsh, you can enjoy its beauty from various angles.

In spring, the snow on top of the marsh will begin melting to unveil the scenery of a partially frozen marsh. This is a sight that attracts nature lovers from around the country to Hachimantai!

Hachimantai Dragon Eye (八幡平ドラゴンアイ)

Wondering what a “Dragon Eye” looks like? Come to Kagami-Numa Marsh (鏡沼) during late May or early June and you may find out if you are lucky!

When the signs of spring begin to appear in Hachimantai, the snow on top of the marsh starts to melt. As the melting process starts from the side of the marsh, the Kagami Marsh will at some point take on the shape of an “eye” (*’▽’).

Kagami-Numa Marsh/Dragon Eye Hachimantai Iwate Japan
Photo from photo-ac.com

The timing to see this eye and its colour differ each year. So you will definitely need some luck to see a beautiful and clear “Dragon Eye”!

The marsh is only a 15 minutes’ walk away from Hachimantai Mountaintop Rest House and is quite close to Hachimantai Mountaintop Observation Deck.

Be sure to stay behind the rope when you get there, as it can be quite dangerous if you get too close (^_-)-☆.

Click HERE to get back to a list of attractions at Hachimantai.

Goshogake Nature Observation Trail (後生掛自然研究路)

In the west part of the Hachimantai Aspite Line, there is a trekking trail where rare volcanic phenomena can be seen throughout.

The Goshogake Onsen Ryokan is located at the trailhead of this trail. So if you are driving, you can park your car in the car park in front of the ryokan.

Goshogake Nature Observation Trail Hachimantai Iwate Japan
Photo from photo-ac.com
Ōyu-numa Marsh Goshogake Nature Observation Trail Hachimantai Iwate Japan
Photo from photo-ac.com

At the end of the trail is the Ōyu-Numa Marsh (大湯沼) which is filled with boiling spring. At the side of the marsh, there are also a lot of fumaroles and mud pods which are a rare sight.

Also located in this trekking course is Japan’s biggest mud volcano – Daidorokazan (大泥火山). If you have time, definitely drop by this spot for this rare scene (^_-)-☆.

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Goshogake Hot Spring Hotel (後生掛温泉)

Japan is quite well known for its onsen. But a relatively less known luxury is their mud baths.

At Ghoshogake Hot Spring Hotel, you can take a mud bath with the natural mud that you just saw in Goshogake Nature Observation Trail! And if you haven’t had enough mud, get a few mud soap from their souvenir shops (^_-)-☆.

Apart from the mud bath, there are a total of seven other onsen pools/sauna.

Goshogake Hot Spring Hotel Goshogake Nature Observation Trail Hachimantai Iwate Japan
Photo from Akita Prefectural Tourism Federation

Tips: If you are staying overnight at the hotel, check with the hotel when you book to see if any campaigns are going on – you may be able to rent out the smaller onsen pool – Buna-no-Yu (ぶなの湯) during specific hours.

Goshogake Hot Spring Hotel Goshogake Nature Observation Trail Hachimantai Iwate Japan
Photo from Akita Prefectural Tourism Federation

If you aren’t staying over at this hotel, you can utilise their bathing facilities from 9 am to 3 pm (the last admission at 2:30 pm) for 600 yen (300 yen for primary school students).

You can also enjoy lunch full of Akita’s local specials from 11 am to 2 pm at the hotel’s restaurant!

Tips: For those who have special dietary requirements like us and are staying overnight at the hotel, remember to let them know what you can’t eat at least 3 days in advance and they will try their best to cater for it (=゚ω゚)ノ.

Click HERE to get back to a list of attractions at Hachimantai.

Hachimantai’s Snow Monsters

The abies sachalinensis forest from Gentamori (源太森) to the summit of Mt. Hachimantai will turn into a field filled with snow monsters from early December.

This special scenery is created when the trees in the forests are covered with hoarfrost and snow that make them look like monsters on the snowfield!

Unlike the snow monsters at Mt. Moriyoshi or around Hakkoda Ropeway which can be easily accessed, it is the easiest and the safest to join a tour to see Hachimantai’s snow monsters.

Hachimantai Jyuhyo Iwate Japan
Photo from Iwate Prefecture Tourism Association

The tours can be booked from Hotel Appi Grand (ホテル安比グランド). They have different courses to suit the guests’ experience level. If you have kids, they can only participate if they are above 10 years of age. We will update this article when the prices of the tours are announced for the 2021 season.

As booking is essential, make sure to secure your spot before you visit Hachimantai!

Click HERE to get back to a list of attractions at Hachimantai.

Hachimantai Jukai Line (八幡平樹海ライン)

Another option to get to the summit of Mt. Hachimantai is via the Hachimantai Jukai Line. As the name of the highway suggests, this highway passes through Hachimantai’s virgin forest. Along the road, you are accompanied by the magnificent view of Mt. Iwate. The scenery along this drive is particularly stunning during the season of fresh green and the season of autumn foliage.

Important: The road is closed from early November to late April.

The below attractions are listed in the order from the Summit of Hachimantai back to Hachimantai city in Iwate prefecture so you don’t get bored with the same scenery on the way back (=゚ω゚)ノ.

Tōshichi Hot Springs Saiunso (藤七温泉 彩雲荘)

Toshichi Hot Springs Saiunso Iwate Japan
Photo from Tohoku Tourism Promotion Organization

Driving from the Hachimantain Mountaintop Rest House towards Iwate prefecture via the Hachimaintai Jukai Line (八幡平樹海ライン), you will pass through the highest onsen ryokan – Toshichi Onsen Saiunso.

At an altitude of 1,400 meters, the best thing about this onsen is its open-air bath with a 360-degree panoramic view (though the pools themselves look quite shabby).

Among these outdoor onsen pools, there is one gender-separated pool for each gender. The rest are all mix-gendered. For those who are not comfortable bathing outdoors, there are also gender-separated indoor pools (but no private pools).

The ryokan sells bath towels that are permitted for onsen bathing for 1,000 yen.

Similar to Goshogake Hot Spring Hotel, there is a mud pool (*´ω`).

One incentive for you to stay overnight at the ryokan is the potential to catch a glimpse of the fabulous sunrise or the sea of clouds. These views can be experienced whilst indulging in their open-air onsen pools.

Toshichi Hot Springs Saiunso Iwate Japan
Photo from Tohoku Tourism Promotion Organization

The cost for a drop-by onsen bath is 650 yen (350 yen for primary school students) and all of their pools are accessible from 8 am to 6 pm.

Tips: For those who have special dietary requirements like us and are staying overnight at the ryokan, remember to let the ryokan know about your situation. Although dinners and breakfasts are usually buffet styles, when there aren’t many guests, set meals will be provided instead (=゚ω゚)ノ.

Important: The ryokan is closed in winter from the end of October to late April.

For more information, you can refer to their English official website HERE.

How to Get to Tōshichi Hot Springs Saiunso
  • The ryokan has one free shuttle bus service departing at 2 pm and arriving at 11 am at the bus stop no. 28 at JR Morioka Station (盛岡駅)’s exit each day. If you want to utilise this service, please reserve with the ryokan at least three days in advance.
    • HERE is the link to their Japanese official website for this service
  • They also provide free pick-up and drop-off from Hachimantai Chōjō (八幡平頂上) bus stop at Hachimantai Mountaintop Rest House. If you want to utilise this service, please let the ryokan know at the time of booking.
  • Otherwise, it is a 25 mins walk from the Hachimantai Mountaintop Rest House.
  • If you need to contact the ryokan for any matters, give them a call at +81 090-1495-0950.
  • You can also catch regular bus services operated by the Northern Iwate Transportation Inc to get to the ryokan. For the timetable, please refer to the access information to Hachimantai at the end of the article

Important: The free shuttle bus and pick-up services are only for guests who stay overnight at the ryokan.

Click HERE to get back to a list of attractions at Hachimantai.

Yakehashiri Lava Flow (焼走り熔岩流)

On the northeast side of Mt. Iwate, there is a patch of the barren landscape.

Around 300 years ago, when Mt. Iwate erupted, the lava was blown as far as four kilometers, creating this ashen, rocky landscape. There are a few weeds growing out among the rocks; however, the standout is the pine tree in the photo (which you will see when you get there). It is a miracle for it to have grown so well in this arid landscape!

Parking your car at the trailhead and follow the unique promenade, you will be at the Yashibashiri Observatory (焼走り展望台) that will give you a great view of the beautiful Mt. Iwate covered with greenery which contrasts with the ashen Yakehashiri Lava flow!

Yakehashiri Lava Flow Iwate Japan
Photo from photo-ac.com
Yakehashiri Lava Flow Iwate Japan
Photo from Tohoku Tourism Promotion Organization

Very close to the car park is the Iwate Yakehashiri International Exchange Village (岩手山焼走り国際交流村). You can book to stay overnight here in a cabin or camp at their campsites (you will need to bring your own tent).

If you are an onsen fan, their onsen facility is available from 9:30 am to 8:30 pm (the last admission at 8 pm) on weekdays and to 9 pm (the last admission at 8:30 pm) on weekends and public holidays!

HERE is the link to their website (Japanese only). If you need assistance with booking, please kindly get in touch with us HERE and we will get back to you.

Click HERE to get back to a list of attractions at Hachimantai.

Matsukawa Onsen (松川温泉)

Matsukawaso (松川荘), Kyuonso (峡雲荘) and Shōfūsō (松楓荘) are the three onsen ryokan of the Matsukawa Onsen Resort.

Matsukawaso Matsukawa Onsen Iwate Japan
Photo from Iwate Prefecture Tourism Association

Locating at the back of the Matsukawa Gorge the ryokans at Matsukawa Onsen are all surrounded by beautiful nature!

You can utilise their onsen facilities during the day even if you aren’t staying overnight. But do note that none of them have private onsen pools.

Also just like a lot of the onsen ryokans in northeastern Japan, at least one of their open-aired pools is mixed-gendered (female guests enjoy the privileges of having an outdoor onsen pool to themselves).

The onsen at Shōfūsō is the most unique one among all three of these ryokans (and probably around the world).

They have an onsen pool in a cave!

Important: From March to early May, this onsen pool will be closed if there is a risk of a cave-in. Please check with the ryokan staff before you venture out to the cave.

Shofuso Matsukawa Onsen Iwate Japan
Photo from 旅と温泉の無料写真素材 おんふぉと

Tips: For those who don’t eat fish or meat and want to stay overnight at Matsukawa Onsen Resort, Shōfūsō should be able to cater to your dietary requirements. Please let them know at the time of booking to confirm!

Day Trip Onsen Pricing and Opening Hours at Matsukawa Onsen
  • Matsukawaso: 600 yen (300 yen for kids age 5 – 12)
    • Opening hours for day trip customers: 8 am to 6 pm (last admission at 5 pm)
    • If you plan to have lunch at the ryokan, the restaurant’s opening hours are from 11:30 am to 1:30 pm (last order)
  • Kyounso: 600 yen (300 yen for kids age 5 – 12)
    • Opening hours for day trip customers: 8 am to 7 pm (last admission at 6 pm)
    • If you plan to have lunch at the ryokan, please let the ryokan know by 11:30 am
Matsukawaso Matsukawa Onsen Iwate Japan
Photo from Iwate Prefecture Tourism Association
  • Shōfūsō: 600 yen (300 yen for kids age 5 – 12)
    • Opening hours for day trip customers: 8 am to 8 pm (last admission at 7 pm)
      • Closed for day trip customers on Wednesdays
    • If you plan to have lunch at the ryokan, the restaurant’s opening hours are from 12 am to 1 pm (last order)

Tips: If you have valuable items with you, you can leave them at the front desk.

Click HERE to get back to a list of attractions at Hachimantai.

Matsukawa Gorge (松川渓谷)

If you are coming from the Iwate prefecture, before driving into the Hachimantai Jukai Line, you will pass through the Matsukawa Gorge (from the entrance to the Hachmaintai Aspite Line, it is a 10 minutes drive).

The gorge extends from Hachimantai Onsenkyo (八幡平温泉郷) to Matsukawa Onsen (松川温泉).

One of the most special things about the gorge is the Matsukawa Genbuiwa (松川玄武岩) and its columnar joint rock walls.

Matsukawa Gorge Iwate Japan
Photo from Iwate Prefecture Tourism Association

Mori no Ohashi Bridge (森の大橋)

Mori no Ohashi Bridge Iwate Japan
Photo from Iwate Prefecture Tourism Association

Marking the start of Matsukawa Gorge is the Mori no Ohashi Bridge.

From the bridge, you get a great view of Mt. Iwate and also Hachimantai city.

For those that are driving, there is a small car park close by. Close to this bridge, there is a promenade that leads to the Matsukawa Genbuiwa mentioned above in less than 10 minutes (^_-)-☆.

For those that enjoy the autumn foliage, these bright vivid colours will start to cover the gorge from early October and are most vibrant from mid to late October.

How to Get to Matsukawa Gorge

To get to Matsukawa Gorge by public transport, you can catch either the regular bus services or the Hachimantai Shizen Sansaku Bus (八幡平自然散策バス) from JR Morioka Station (盛岡駅)’s east exit’s bus stop no. 3.

If you are catching the Hachimantai Shizen Sansaku Bus from JR Morioka Station, we would recommend you drop by the gorge on the way back unless you are staying at the accommodation around Matsukawa Gorge.

For more information, please refer to the access information to Hachimantai at the end of the article.

Click HERE to get back to a list of attractions at Hachimantai.

Nanataki Fall (七滝)

Nanataki Fall Iwate Japan
Photo from Iwate Prefecture Tourism Association

Not too far away from the Mori no Ohashi Bridge is the trailhead to Nanataki.

When the trail isn’t covered by thick snow, it will only take you around 6 minutes to get to this beautiful waterfall (*´ω`).

The difficulty of this course is suitable for pretty much anyone. So when you drop by Hachimantai Onsen Town or Matsukawa Onsen, how about adding this spot to your itinerary?

In winter, usually from late January, the magnificent view of a frozen 30 meter tall waterfall will appear in front of you after 1.5 hours of trekking in the snow!

One thing that we want to point out here is, not too far from the 2 km mark from the waterfall, the track splits in two. Both lead to the waterfall. Note the one labelled with “登山道” which means hiking trail. You will get to the waterfall quicker with this path but it is also muddier and steeper when compared to the other path.

Salad Farm (サラダファーム)

This salad farm is a convenient stop as you head back to Iwate prefecture. There are also cute animals such as alpacas here.

Located at the plateau at the foot of Mt. Iwate, this is an attraction boasting approximately 1,200 different types of plants. And with both Mt. Iwate and Mt. Hachimantai as backdrops, even if you aren’t interested in the animals, it would still be a great spot to drop by (^_-)-☆.

Between January and June, on Fridays, weekends, and public holidays, you can also do strawberry picking at the farm from 10 am to 2 pm.

From 11 am to 3 pm, you can also enjoy mouth-watering dishes served at their cafe which also serves vegetarian options! To have a look at their Japanese menu with photos, please click HERE!

For more details about the farm, please check out their English official website HERE.

Salad Farm’s Access Information and Business Hours

  • The garden is opened from 9 am to 5 pm daily except Wednesdays
  • The cafe is opened from 10 am to 4 pm (lunch is served from 11 am to 3 pm)
  • The garden park where you get to play with the animals have shorter opening hours during winter and costs 300 yen for all that is 16 years old and above

Hachimantai’s Autumn

From late September, the colour of the foliage will start changing colour. The autumn foliage usually peaks from early to mid-October each year!

What to Wear and Bring

  • Long-sleeved, quick-drying shirt is desirable. In spring and autumn, remember to bring a warm jacket that is wind and water-proof
  • Trekking/hiking shoes
  • Water bottle with one litre capacity
  • Gloves (water-proof is better)
  • Hat to protect you from direct sunlight and to keep your head warm and safe from obstacles such as tree branches
  • Spats to avoid rain, snow, and sand from coming into your shoes
  • Hiking poles
  • Towels and plastic bags can be handy
  • First-aid kit

Click HERE to get back to a list of attractions at Hachimantai.

How to Get to Hachimantai by Public Transport

  • If you are travelling from Akita prefecture, then you will need to get off at JR Tazawako Station. You can refer to our article about Lake Tazawa for more ideas to put onto your itinerary (^_-)-☆
    • From JR Tazawako Station, take Ugoku Kotsu (羽後交通)’s Hachimantai Line (八幡平線) from mid-Apr to mid- Oct and get off at Hachimantai Chōjō (八幡平頂上)
    • HERE is the timetable of the Hachimantai Line
  • If you are travelling from Iwate prefecture, you can catch either the regular bus services or the Hachimantai Shizen Sansaku Bus (八幡平自然散策バス) from JR Morioka Station (盛岡駅)’s east exit’s bus stop no. 3
    • The Hachimantai Shizen Sansaku Bus is operating from the 23rd of Apr to the 17th of Oct daily in 2021
      • The 2021 timetable can be found HERE. There is currently no English version available so please refer back to the stop’s Japanese name when you look up the timetable. If you still have trouble reading the timetable, contact us HERE and we will get back to you. The column coloured in blue is the timetable for the 23rd of Apr to the 10th of Jun. The column coloured in green is the timetable for the 11th of Jun to the 17th of Oct
      • Bus ticket needs to be purchased in advance. There are a couple of locations that sell the ticket.
        • At JR Morioka Station, please get it from the Iwate Prefectural Transportation information center in front of Morioka Station (盛岡駅前バス案内所).
        • From the summit of Mt. Hachimantain, please get it from Hachimantain Mountaintop Rest House (八幡平山頂レストハウス).
        • From Matsukawa Onsen/Hachimantai Onsen Town (八幡平温泉郷), there are a few spots where you can get the ticket from including Hachimantai Rising Sun Hotel (八幡平ライジングサンホテル), Hachimantai Heights (八幡平ハイツ), Hachimantai Mountain Hotel (八幡平マウンテンホテル) and the three onsen ryokan in Matsukawa Onsen
        • Please note that the bus ticket is only valid on the day of purchase
      • One-way price to the summit of Mt. Hachimantai – Hachimantai Chōjō (八幡平頂上) is 1,350 yen (680 yen for kids between the age of 6 – 12 years old)
      • With the bus ticket, you can join the Hachimantai guide tour (in Japanese) for free departing from Hachimantai Summit Resthouse at around 11:30 am daily. The time required for the tour differs depending on the season (approx. 60 mins in spring, and 2.5 hours in summer)
      • If you want to travel in between the scenic spots in the Hachimantai area by bus, a one-day free pass also costs 1,350 yen (not including the bus fare to Mt. Hachimantai summit)
      • If you are staying at Hachimantai Onsen Town (八幡平温泉郷) or Matsukawa Onsen (松川温泉), you can get a set ticket that allows you to get off at either of the onsen resort before heading back to JR Morioka Station
    • If the departing time of the Hachimantai Shizen Sansaku Bus doesn’t suit your schedule, you can also catch the regular bus services to the summit of Mt. Hachimantai. Please note the regular bus services won’t be going to heading to the summit during winter when the highways are closed
      • Timetable for bus services departing for and from the summit (Hachimantai Chōjō (八幡平頂上)) can be found HERE

Festivals at Hachimantai

Festivals At Hachimantai
Photo from Iwate Prefecture Tourism Association
  • Hachimantai Furotosa Fireworks Festival (八幡平ふるさと花火まつり)
    • Held on the Saturday from 7:30 – 8:30 pm in mid-August (parades and performances take place during the day)
    • Held at Hachimantai City Matsuo Sports Park (八幡平市松尾総合運動公園)
    • The park is approximately a 40 minute walk or a 10 minute drive from JR Kitamori Station (北森駅)
  • Hirakasa Naked Festival (平笠裸参り)
    • It is the only Naked Festival in Japan that allows females to participate (it was a male-only event until WWII. As most of the men were sent to war, the festival was opened up to the females to pray for the safety of the soldiers)
    • Held on the 8th of January from 8:30 am to 1:30 pm
    • Held at Miyata Shrine (宮田神社)
    • The shrine is around 45 mins walk or a 10 mins drive from JR Ōbuke Station (大更駅)
  • Hachimantai Bandit Festival (八幡平山賊まつり)
    • An event to eat and shop for local ingredients while watching performances on stage
    • Held on the long weekend in the second week of October
    • Held at Sakura Park Event Plaza (さくら公園イベント広場)
    • Please refer to the access information for Matsugawa Gorge. The park isn’t too far away from the Gorge

Combine Your Visit to Hachimantai with Appi Kogen Nearby

The Appi Kogen (安比高原) is an idyllic plateau located in the western part of the Iwate prefecture. It is great for a relaxing walk from spring to autumn. When the region is transformed into a winter wonderland, many come to Appi Kogen to ski or snowboard on its high-quality snow (Appi Ski Resort is said to be comparable to the resorts in Hokkaido!)!

If you enjoy spending time in nature and love outdoor activities, Appi Kogen is definitely the spot in the Iwate prefecture that you won’t want to miss out on (^_-)-☆.

To know more about where to go at Hachimantai, please refer to our Appi Kogen article!

Appi-Kogen-Ski-Resort-Iwate-Japan
Find out more about Appi Kogen by clicking on the stunning photo!

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