fbpx
    • Spring
      • Eating Wild in Japan

        Eating Wild in Japan

        Winifred Bird's latest book is an introduction to the world of sansai (mountain vegetables) and foraging in Japan.
        Niseko flying Hokkaido

        Bird’s Eye View of Hokkaido

        Get a bird's eye view of Hokkaido with Ben Kerr, a Niseko-based pilot.

        Northern Tohoku’s Top 5 Spring Hikes

        Chase the cherry blossoms north and enjoy five of Tohoku’s best hikes this spring.

        Spring Escapes: Outdoor Activities in Japan

        Check out these spring escapes this season and enjoy outdoor activities throughout Japan.

        Haga Farm Spring Glamping in Tochigi

        Haga Farm and Glamping in Tochigi opened in August 2020, and it has quickly become a popular escape for Tokyoites.
    • Summer
      • Washi Papermaking Kochi Shikoku Outdoor Japan

        Following the Paper Trail in Kochi

        Discover the traditional art of washi papermaking in Kochi with artist Rogier Uitenboogaart.
        Climbing Mt. Fuji Outdoor Japan

        Peaking in 2021: Climbing Mt. Fuji

        Thinking of climbing Mt. Fuji this summer? We talk to Mt. Fuji guides on best practices for scaling Japan's highest mountain.

        Japan Camping Guide

        Check out our picks all the way from Hokkaido to the Okinawa Islands and then plot your perfect Japan camping adventure.
        Japan's Digital Nomads Van Life in Japan

        Japan’s Digital Nomads

        Adventure couple Ruth Aisling and Bappa Shota explores Japan by van.
        Iriomote Yamaneko Outdoor Japan

        Iriomote’s Endangered Wildcats

        Iriomote Island, one of Japan's last untouched wild places, is home to the endangered yamaneko wildcat.
    • Autumn
      • video

        Shikoku Road Trip: Kochi by Camper Van

        Mountainous forests and coastal towns dominate most of the prefecture, where visitors will find enterprising locals and nature guides working to revitalize their communities. Shikoku’s winding roads are best explored by car.
    • Winter
    • Near Tokyo
    • Near Kyoto
    • All Regions
    • Article Map
    • Ocean and Beach
      • Kaiyu Kochi Shikoku Outdoor Japan

        Snorkeling, Surfing and Sustainability in Koch...

        Enjoy the clear waters of Kochi by snorkeling and surfing while staying at a refurbished hotel committed to sustainability.
        Outdoor Japan Shimoda

        Blue Waves and Black Ships in Shimoda

        Shimoda may be famous for its white sandy beaches and surfing, but it also played a major role in shaping the Japan we know today.
        Iriomote Outdoor Japan

        Iriomote Activity Guide

        A guide to Iriomote's outdoors, hiking, diving, cultural experiences and accommodation.

        Spring Escapes: Outdoor Activities in Japan

        Check out these spring escapes this season and enjoy outdoor activities throughout Japan.
    • River and Lake
      • Iriomote Yamaneko Outdoor Japan

        Iriomote’s Endanger...

        Iriomote Island, one of Japan's last untouched wild places, is home to the endangered yamaneko wildcat.
        Iriomote Outdoor Japan

        Iriomote Activity Guide

        A guide to Iriomote's outdoors, hiking, diving, cultural experiences and accommodation.
        Niseko flying Hokkaido

        Bird’s Eye View of Hokkai...

        Get a bird's eye view of Hokkaido with Ben Kerr, a Niseko-based pilot.

        Spring Escapes: Outdoor A...

        Check out these spring escapes this season and enjoy outdoor activities throughout Japan.
        video

        Shikoku Road Trip: Kochi ...

        Mountainous forests and coastal towns dominate most of the prefecture, where visitors will find enterprising locals and nature guides working to revitalize their communities. Shikoku’s winding roads are best explored by car.
    • Mountain and Land
    • Sky
    • Snow and Ice
      • hiroshima skiing osorakan snow parkvideo

        Hiroshima Skiing at Osorakan Snow Park

        Enjoy skiing and snowboarding just an hour from Hiroshima at Osorakan Snow Park. Every winter, people from Kansai and Kyushu flock to one of the region’s most popular ski resorts for winter fun.
    • Travel
      • Washi Papermaking Kochi Shikoku Outdoor Japan

        Following the Paper Trail in Kochi

        Discover the traditional art of washi papermaking in Kochi with artist Rogier Uitenboogaart.
        Kaiyu Kochi Shikoku Outdoor Japan

        Snorkeling, Surfing and Sustainability in Koch...

        Enjoy the clear waters of Kochi by snorkeling and surfing while staying at a refurbished hotel committed to sustainability.
        Japan's Digital Nomads Van Life in Japan

        Japan’s Digital Nomads

        Adventure couple Ruth Aisling and Bappa Shota explores Japan by van.
        Iriomote Yamaneko Outdoor Japan

        Iriomote’s Endangered Wildcats

        Iriomote Island, one of Japan's last untouched wild places, is home to the endangered yamaneko wildcat.
        Eating Wild in Japan

        Eating Wild in Japan

        Winifred Bird's latest book is an introduction to the world of sansai (mountain vegetables) and foraging in Japan.
    • Food and Drinks
      • Washi Papermaking Kochi Shikoku Outdoor Japan

        Following the Paper Trail in Kochi

        Discover the traditional art of washi papermaking in Kochi with artist Rogier Uitenboogaart.
        Kaiyu Kochi Shikoku Outdoor Japan

        Snorkeling, Surfing and Sustainability in Koch...

        Enjoy the clear waters of Kochi by snorkeling and surfing while staying at a refurbished hotel committed to sustainability.
        Japan's Digital Nomads Van Life in Japan

        Japan’s Digital Nomads

        Adventure couple Ruth Aisling and Bappa Shota explores Japan by van.
        Iriomote Yamaneko Outdoor Japan

        Iriomote’s Endangered Wildcats

        Iriomote Island, one of Japan's last untouched wild places, is home to the endangered yamaneko wildcat.
        Eating Wild in Japan

        Eating Wild in Japan

        Winifred Bird's latest book is an introduction to the world of sansai (mountain vegetables) and foraging in Japan.
    • Races and Events
      • Photo by Noriteru Ino

        2021 Summer Music Festivals in Japan

        Camp and listen to great music in the outdoors at these summer music festivals across Japan.
        Summer Events Fireworks Festivals in Japan

        2021 Fireworks Festivals in Japan

        Enjoy these fireworks festivals held throughout Japan this summer and autumn.
        Summer Festivals in Japan

        2021 Summer Festivals in Japan

        Enjoy these traditional matsuri festivals throughout Japan this summer.
        summer events omm lite and bike hakuba

        2021 Summer Events and Races in Japan

        Check out upcoming events and races held throughout Japan this summer and early fall.

100 Famous Japanese Mountains: #21 Tsukuba-san

As I approached Mt. Tsukuba from a distance, I could see the two peaks that symbolize this mountain. The peak to the east, Nyotai-san, represents the goddess Izanami. The peak to the west, Nantai-san, the god Izanagi. My mind raced back to the pages of Kojiki, the oldest history book of Japan, where it was said these gods stirred a spear together in the mud, and a drop from the spearhead was what started the world as we know it.

At the foot of the mountain, there were plenty of people to be seen for a weekday. I finished off the baked sweet potato I had bought from one of the many street vendors, and I followed the signs and the small group of school children ahead of me.

I noticed lots of young people on this trail due to the nearby Tsukuba Expo Science Center, I figured. I was impressed with hearing elementary school children discuss Tsukuba-san’s granite content. The granite from the Tsukuba-san area is considered beautiful and is renowned all over Japan—and is still mined today.

At the toad-shaped shrine, I could not help but burst into a giggle. There was toad paraphernalia everywhere! From toad medicines to toad grease to toad ceramics, I was encouraged that it would bring good luck and protect me against harm.

I was especially impressed with the toad grease, said to be used in ancient times to protect and toughen a warrior’s skin against injury in battle. It sounded good to me. I wondered if it had any strength against wrinkles, so I dabbed a little bit around my crow’s feet and continued along the mountain.

Trail Tips

This is a great day-hike for those who want to get a little exercise while exploring the myth-rich town of Tsuchiura. From various temples to rows of historic buildings along old Mito Avenue, there is a lot to do in this town before or after hiking Mt.Tsukuba.

Though you can climb year-round, the winter does get quite chilly, and care should be taken to dress warmly while on top of the mountain. On clear days, panoramic views of the Kanto Plain are visible from the top of Tsukuba-san. For those with small children, the summit of Tsukuba-san can be easily reached by ropeway or cable car.

MOUNTAIN STATS

Mountain: Tsukuba-san
Difficulty Level: 1 out of 5
Location: Tsukuba City, Ibaraki Prefecture
Peak: 877 meters
Duration: Day hike
When to go: Year-round

Getting There

Take the local train from Ueno to Tsuchiura (express option is available for double the cost). Buy a bus ticket at Tsuchiura Station, which will take you to Tsukuba City. From there take a taxi to Tsutsujigaoka and approach the mountain from the main entrance sign.

JR Ueno Station⇒ Tsuchiura ⇒Tsukuba City ⇒ Tsutsujigaoka

(70 mins., ¥1,110) ⇒ (55 mins. ¥890) ⇒ (15 mins. ¥3,000)

Things to Bring

  • Raingear
  • Flashlight
  • Map
  • Camera
  • Sunscreen
  • Water
  • Gloves
  • Sunglasses
  • Warm hat

Contact Information

Tsukuba Tourist Information Center: (029) 855-8155
Tsuchiura City Tourist Information Center: (029) 821-4166

Things Not to Miss

Tsukuba-san Shrine located in the middle of Mt.Tsukuba.
Tokakuji Temples from the Kamakura Period. (15-minute walk from Tsuchiura Station).
Tsukuba Expo Center which consists of a Children’s Park, Science Forum and Cosmic Hall Planetarium.
Historic Building on the Old Mito Avenue (10 minutes from Tsuchirura Station)

Hiking Time

3 hours, 25 minutes

Outdoor Japan logo tree

Related

Latest posts

Categories