Vegetarian's Japan Guide

The Picturesque Ponds Between Sukayu Onsen and Tsuta Onsen

The famous Oirase Gorge and Lake Towada are probably the mainstream destinations of Aomori Prefecture. But if you just take the JR bus from JR Aomori Station straight to Yakeyama (the entrance of Oirase Gorge), you are missing quite a few scenic ponds!

In between the Sukayu Onsen (famous for its mixed-gender onsen) and Tsuta Onsen (which has an onsen pool directly built above the source of the onsen), you will find 9 unique ponds (or swamps if you like) that definitely worth a visit (=゚ω゚)ノ. Among the nine, seven of them are even linked by a promenade!

Refer to our article about How to Get to the Picturesque Oirase Gorge for these beautiful ponds access information.

Explore Oirase Gorge With a Guided Tour

You can also book a tour to explore the popular attractions between Hakkōda Ropeway and Oirase Gorge.

Jigoku-Numa Pond (地獄沼)

Albeit having a scary name, the scenery at Jigoku-numa pond is like heaven instead of its name – meaning ‘hell’ (´▽`*). The reason behind its name is due to the sulfur-rich gas and onsen squirting out of the explosion crater trace and the fumaroles nearby.

Due to its volcanic activities, the water temperature of Jigoku-numa can be as high as 90 degrees. So the pond’s surface is usually covered by fog, creating a mysterious atmosphere!

jigoku-numa pond aomori

Important: Please don’t go beyond any signboards that say “危険なのでこれ以降立ち入り禁止”. Those signboards are there for a very good reason. If you don’t want your Japan trip to start or end with you being in the hospital or, worse, death, please adhere to the signboards at all costs.

Other Seasons At Jigoku-Numa

jigoku-numa pond aomori

As long as you don’t mind the strong sulfur smell, the view of Mt. Hakkoda from Jigoku-numa pond is just breathtaking.

If you are a morning person, capturing the sunrise at the pond can be another great scenic photo collection!

While many people choose to visit Jigoku-numa in mid-October for the autumn foliage, we believe that the pond surrounded by the white snow would be a worthwhile visit too,

Unlike all the other ponds in the area, this one will never be frozen by the cold!


How to Get to Jigoku-Numa

Jigoku-numa is just a 10-minute walk from Sukayu Onsen!

Suiren-Numa Pond (睡蓮沼)

This gorgeous pond is named Suiren-numa due to the water lilies grown and located on the other side of the pond.

However, the flowers only bloom for a really short period of time in early August. Nevertheless, why not visit the Suiren-numa Pond for this rare scenery? That way, you can avoid the heat in other parts of Japan at the same time (^_-)-☆.

Ⓒ Towada City
Ⓒ Towada city

If you can’t make time to travel to Aomori in August, don’t worry, the scenery at Suiren-numa still looks great regardless of what month you visit!

After the snow has been melted by the time it hits early June, the skunk cabbage will blossom all the way to late June. It is like a relay run, where the mountain azalea’s pink flowers color the lakeshore straight after!

Tip: As the season moves from the warm summer to autumn, it can be quite chilly at Suiren-numa Lake. So you might find that a cardigan or jacket may come in handy when you visit the Pond for its beautiful autumn foliage (=゚ω゚)ノ

Ⓒ Towada City

The autumn foliage season at Suiren-numa Lake starts in early October. Depending on the temperature/weather, you might be able to get a photo of the Lake covered in bright autumn color with the Hakkoda Mountain Range covered in white snow as a backdrop!

How to Get to Suiren-Numa Pond

Between mid-April to mid-November, you can take the JR Bus Mizuumi-Gō (みずうみ号) and get off at Suiren-Numa Pond (睡蓮沼).

  • From Aomori:
    To get to Sukayu Onsen, please take JR Bus Mizuumi from either JR Aomori Station’s (青森駅) bus stop no.11 or the bus stop no.1 located at JR Shin-Aomori’s (新青森駅) east exit.
  • From Lake Towada:
    To get to Sukayu Onsen, please take JR Bus Mizuumi from JR Tohoku Bus Nenokuchi Station (ジェイアールバス東北 子ノ口駅)

If you are planning to visit Suiren-Numa Pond from late November to early April, driving is probably the best option. While it isn’t impossible to walk from Sukayu Onsen, it will take you at least a few hours to get there…

Tsuta-Numa Pond (蔦沼) and the Tsuta-Nana-Numa Ponds (蔦七沼)

South of Suiren-Numa Pond, the Tsuta-Nana-Numa Ponds are the most famous ponds in the area. Not only are these ponds stunning, there is also a promenade linking them for you to take a relaxing stroll. In addition, a ryokan is located close to them that allows you to adore the astonishing sunrise scenery in autumn!

For more information, refer to our Guide to Tsuta-Numa and the Tsuta-Nana-Numa Ponds.

tsuta-numa aomori

Discover Other Attractions Around the Area

Click the photo to find out more about the Hakkōda ropeway!

Discover other stunning attractions in Hakkōda Mountains (八甲田山). You will find some of the most breathtaking scenery as you trek through the mountain trails that connect you to ponds and lookouts.

For more information, please refer to our article on Hakkōda Mountains!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *