Many people who visit Japan for the first time are fascinated by the huge collections of historical facts and galleries, and on top of this, the country welcomes them with great displays of the beauty of nature. One of the things you will learn about Japan is that it accommodates both modernity and ancient civilization, and what you will find particularly more intriguing is the display of its history and culture that dates back thousands of years.
D. Scott Carruthers is a travel enthusiast who has toured different countries across the world, Japan being one of them. Apart from sharing his experiences, D. Scott Carruthers has also been offering advice to visitors so they can enjoy the most. He shares some useful information highlighting the most beautiful places you could choose to visit while in Japan.
The Sagano Bamboo Forest
In Japanese culture, bamboo symbolizes strength, and the trees are mostly found around temples to clear off evil. One of the most beautiful and well-preserved bamboo forests you could visit is the Sagano Bamboo Forest, which is located in Kyoto. The forest is made up of paths that resemble bicycle trails with towers on both sides of the path thereby rendering some serenity that couples will find befitting of a honeymoon. The forest is chilling calm and you will hear the smooth sound of the wind as it cruises through the tall bamboo poles.
One of the most visited places in Japan, Historic Kyoto, is among few cities across Japan that survived the devastation of the Second World War. Owing to its beauty and variety of displays, the city attracts at least 10 million visitors every year. One of the things you will admire about the city is its architecture, which dates back as far as three centuries, and amid these buildings are sculptures, paintings, and different forms of art that you probably will have come across for the first time.
Central to this beauty is the Golden Pavilion, which is famous for having an exquisitely built exterior that is coated in gold leaves. Most fortresses have retained their original walls and decorations that are something many find intriguing since their complexity makes you question the kind of creativity the modern human exhibits. Also within the city is the Arashiyama Bamboo Grove, which is an area covered in tall bamboos in a beautiful pattern.
Chūbu-Sangaku National Park
You should also take some time to visit the Chūbu-Sangaku National Park, which is one of the regions in Japan known to have natural beauty. In fact, this is a UNESCO world heritage site and among Japan’s most spectacular parks. On the northern and central sides of the park is a group of mountains that reiterate the beauty, and many activities happen around this place due to the diversity offered by nature.
You will also see some of the highest peaks in the country and if you are courageous enough, you could try some climbing sessions, which is indeed fun and one of the reasons tourists flock the destination. Flora and fauna is abundant within the park, which includes rare mountain antelopes and ptarmigan that you will find at higher altitudes. Due to the high number of visitors expected around the park, there are resorts and restaurants that also offer indigenous meals.
The Atsuta Shrine
Classified as the most important Shinto shrine, the Atsuta Shrine attracts over five million visitors every year. It was established during the first century and has remained a significant religious site, which has became famous for imperial insignia. You could also visit the principal shrine in Hongu, which is surrounded by a wall, and inside you will find beautiful ancient and modern art (paintings, ceramics, traditional masks, and jewelry). Before you complete your visit to the region, also make sure to stop at the Nagoya Castle, which is a complex that was constructed in 1612 with a 48-meter-high tower famously known for having two golden dolphins. It also offers spectacular views of the Nobi plain and the city.
Senso-ji Temple, Tokyo
The Senso-ji Temple was founded in 645 and is the oldest temple in Tokyo. This is a rare tourist attraction that is worth visiting at least once in your lifetime to witness the magnificent beauty that lay in ancient art and architecture. Once you pass through the entry gate, you are greeted with massive lanterns and hordes of selfie takers who admire the beauty around the temple. Due to this human traffic, the area has become a major shopping center and you will most definitely get neatly hand-crafted pieces of art that would serve well as souvenirs. You could also spare some time to learn about Japanese cuisine and how to use chopsticks.
According to the Japanese religion, Shinto, nature is the primary place of residence of divine spirits, and Monosumi Inari is thought to be one of the most ideal places to experience the interconnectedness between the soul and spirit. As a visitor, you will view the beauty that covers this place from a distance and the serenity that comes from both the ocean and surrounding vegetation will offer you a perfect moment to connect with your soul. The venue is not only sacred, but its beauty is striking and one of the reasons millions visit every year.
There is a tunnel through which you will travel while engaging your thought process and it is at the end of this tunnel that you will enter into the venue considered sacred. Many people, including locals, come to the Motonosumi Itari to make wishes, so you could as well throw in some hope into something you have always wanted to achieve.
The Kenrokuen Garden has been classified among the three most beautiful gardens in Japan. It is made up of charming bridges, teahouses, flowes, trees, and walking trails. Most of the features that decorate the garden are native to the Chinese people and since the 19th century the garden has been open to the public. There are several seasons that reinstate the beauty, including the spring, when the cherry blossoms, and the autumn when maple tree leaves get fully colorful.
Nachi falls, which tumbles down 133 meters, is the largest in Japan. Overlooking the waterfall is the stunningly beautiful Nachi Taisha Shinto shrine, believed to have existed for more than 1,400 years. The shrine was constructed to honor the spirit god (kami) and is among Buddhist religious sites that are built around the water fall. The surrounding natural elements including trees also offer a unique picture you will also enjoy, and this has been a huge spot for lovers of photography.
The Blue Pond
Located in Hokkaido Prefecture, The Blue Pond, also referred to as Aoiike, is popular because of its ethereal blue waters. On the surface of the pond are tree stumps that protrude and this adds to the otherworldly look the pond boasts. The pond is artificial and was created to help control erosion, but with time it has become a tourist attraction masterpiece. Owing to the fact it was to control mudflows from Mt. Tokachi volcano located next to it, the waters turned blue due to the dissolved minerals that came with the volcanic soil.
Written By: Dennis Carruthers