Autumn Leaves in Kumamoto – The 10 Most Beautiful Viewing Spots
This is a prefecture which is rapidly gaining in popularity due to its official mascot, Kumamon. Let us show you some of the autumn-leaf viewing spots offered by Kumamoto prefecture!
1. Kumamoto Castle
Kumamoto castle is one of the three most famous castles in Japan, and is a special historic site designated by the government. The castle is also known as “Icho-jo” (Gingko castle), and the gingko trees in the castle beautifully change their color in the autumn. The best time for autumn-leaf viewing here is the beginning of November.
2. Tatsuta Nature Park
Tatsuta Nature Park is a ruin of a temple situated on the foot of Tatsuta Mountain. This park is particularly popular for the beautiful autumn leaves surrounding the pond.
3. Gokanosho (Sendan Todoroki-no-taki Waterfall)
Sendan Todoroki-no-taki Waterfall is famous for its impressively dynamic stream. This waterfall with a 70 meters drop has a well-maintained nature trail which enables visitors to walk close to the waterfall basin. The contrast created by the waterfall and autumn leaves is really beautiful.
4. Gokanosho (Momigi-no-Tsuribashi Suspension Bridge)
Momigi-no-Tsuribashi is a suspension bridge with its floor boards directly suspended, which makes it a unique bridge in the country. The autumn scenery viewed from this suspension bridge is overwhelmingly impressive.
5. Gokanosho (Nishinoiwa Rock)
Gokanosho is the collective name for five small villages (Shiibaru, Nitao, Momiki, Haki and Kureko) that are scattered across deep into the Kyushu Mountains. This area is highly popular as an unexplored region filled with unspoiled nature. There you can see the autumn leaves that beautifully decorate the rocky areas among the mountains.
6. Gokanosho (Umenoki Todoro Park)
There is a suspension bridge on the back of the Umenoki Todoro-no-taki Waterfall, which was often referred to as an illusory waterfall. The suspension bridge is at the height of 55 meters, high enough to let you have a walking-in-the-air-like experience, and you can enjoy a splendid view of the red and yellow autumn leaves.
7. Kikuchi Keikoku Ravine
Kikuchi Keikoku Ravine, located in the special protection area of Aso Kuju National Park, is one of Japan’s 100 Remarkable Waters. It is a famous tourist attraction which is also referred to as “the most beautiful gorge”. The contrast created by the emerald green from the gorge and the red and yellow autumn leaves is breathtakingly beautiful.
8. Seiryu-no-mori Forest
Seiryu-no-mori Forest is located on a mountain at an altitude of 900 m above sea level. It is a highly popular tourist spot which features beautiful views of autumn leaves from its observation deck. There is a well-maintained nature trail that lets you enjoy autumn-leaf viewing and relaxing walking.
9. Kawabashirigawa Keikoku
Kawabashirigawa Keikoku is a gorge formed by the Kawabashiragawa river, one of the tributaries of the Gokasegawa River. This is one of the best autumn-leaf viewing spots in the Okuaso area. The view of autumn leaves from the Okuaso Bridge which stands at 120 meters above the river below is absolutely stunning.
10. Soyokyo Gorge
Soyokyo Gorge is a gorge with steep cliffs towering both sides at a height of approximately 200 meters and a length of 10 km. This gorge is referred to as “the Grand Canyon of Kyushu”. You can enjoy the beautiful contrast of the Gokasegawa River and the autumn leaves from the Nagasakibana observation deck.
There are so many areas in Kumamoto that are filled with unspoiled nature... we hope you have the chance to visit some of them!