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    • 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
      • Pow Bar Founder Megumi Scott

        Beyond the Brand: Pow Bar

        An interview with Megumi Scott, the founder of Niseko brand Pow Bar.
        Churamura Okinawa Sea Turtle Marine Conservation

        Churamura: Footprints in the Sand

        Churamura, an NPO in Okinawa, work to conserve marine life and protect endangered sea turtles in Japan's southernmost prefecture.
        Kawazu

        Fall in Love with Kawazu

        Enjoy waterfall hikes and hot springs, beautiful beaches and delicious seafood in Kawazu on the western coast of Izu Peninsula.
        Mountain Biking in Japan

        Guide Lines: Autumn Mountain Biking in Japan

        Check out these mountain biking parks throughout Japan.
    • Winter
      • Early Bird 2021-22 Japan Ski

        Early Bird Ski Deals for 2021-2022

        Don't miss out on these early bird season pass and lift package deals for Japan's ski resorts.

        Pacific Solo

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    • Near Tokyo
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    • Ocean and Beach
      • Churamura Okinawa Sea Turtle Marine Conservation

        Churamura: Footprints in the Sand

        Churamura, an NPO in Okinawa, work to conserve marine life and protect endangered sea turtles in Japan's southernmost prefecture.
        Kawazu

        Fall in Love with Kawazu

        Enjoy waterfall hikes and hot springs, beautiful beaches and delicious seafood in Kawazu on the western coast of Izu Peninsula.
        Kaiyu Kochi Shikoku Outdoor Japan

        Snorkeling, Surfing and Sustainability in Koch...

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        Outdoor Japan Shimoda

        Blue Waves and Black Ships in Shimoda

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    • River and Lake
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        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...

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        Spring Escapes: Outdoor A...

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        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
      • Matagi Akita Tohoku Sustainable Living

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        Akita in the northern Tohoku region is home to the Matagi, hunters who follow an ancient and sustainable way of hunting, foraging and life.
        Early Bird 2021-22 Japan Ski

        Early Bird Ski Deals for 2021-2022

        Don't miss out on these early bird season pass and lift package deals for Japan's ski resorts.
    • Travel
      • Churamura Okinawa Sea Turtle Marine Conservation

        Churamura: Footprints in the Sand

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        Kawazu

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        Enjoy waterfall hikes and hot springs, beautiful beaches and delicious seafood in Kawazu on the western coast of Izu Peninsula.
        Matagi Akita Tohoku Sustainable Living

        Tracking Akita’s Matagi Hunters

        Akita in the northern Tohoku region is home to the Matagi, hunters who follow an ancient and sustainable way of hunting, foraging and life.
        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

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        Enjoy the clear waters of Kochi by snorkeling and surfing while staying at a refurbished hotel committed to sustainability.
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        Churamura, an NPO in Okinawa, work to conserve marine life and protect endangered sea turtles in Japan's southernmost prefecture.
        Kawazu

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        Enjoy waterfall hikes and hot springs, beautiful beaches and delicious seafood in Kawazu on the western coast of Izu Peninsula.
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        Akita in the northern Tohoku region is home to the Matagi, hunters who follow an ancient and sustainable way of hunting, foraging and life.
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        Following the Paper Trail in Kochi

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        Kaiyu Kochi Shikoku Outdoor Japan

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        2021 Fireworks Festivals in Japan

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        Summer Festivals in Japan

        2021 Summer Festivals in Japan

        Enjoy these traditional matsuri festivals throughout Japan this summer.

Japan Eco Track: The Eight Coastal Views of Southern Kagoshima

Japan Eco Track Cycling in Kagoshima

Kagoshima Prefecture, at the southernmost tip of Kyushu Island, was called “Satsuma” during the feudal times before the 19th century. Minamisatsuma City sits on the most southwestern part of the Satsuma Peninsula. It has pristine nature, coastal trails and a pleasant, temperate climate throughout the year. The main attractions are the Fukiage Coast, one of the three largest sand dunes in Japan, and the stellar views of Minamisatsuma Kaido Hakkei (the Eight Coastal Views of Minamisatsuma).

Japan Eco Track Cycling in Kagoshima

Most people in Japan associate the name “Satsuma” with satsuma-imo, the Japanese sweet potato. This region is known for delicious satsuma-imo products and imo shochu, traditional distilled spirits made from grains, sweet potatoes and vegetables. 

Japan Eco Track Cycling in Kagoshima

Minamisatsuma’s dramatic coastline and ocean views make it a popular cycling destination.

Kagoichi Cycling Route

This 226-kilometer route is the longest Eco Track route in Minamisatsuma and makes one loop around the region. Start off at Cycling Terminal Rin Rin and head north along the coast for about two hours to Eguchi Horai-kan at Eguchi Fishing Port. Enjoy fresh seafood and delicious vegetables at this popular restaurant overlooking the East China Sea.

Japan Eco Track Cycling in Kagoshima

Cycle east towards Sakurajima, one of Japan’s most active volcanoes and the symbol of Kagoshima. The volcano smokes constantly and minor eruptions take place multiple times a day. Sakurajima is located in the middle of Kagoshima Bay and is connected to land on the east so you can continue your cycle down to Arahira Tenjin, a scenic island shrine housing the god of learning. 

To get back to Satsuma Peninsula, take a ferry from Nejime to Yamakawa terminal, and continue west to Bansho-bana Nature Park, where the Satsuma clan’s guardhouse was located for maritime security. Today it is a park with a promenade and observation deck. 

The final leg of this journey stops at a series of observatories that make up the Minamisatsuma Kaido Hakkei Trail. Follow the coast west to Mitori Pass Observation Deck for a stunning sunrise. Further north, Marukizaki Observatory offers a panoramic view of the East China Sea and is a great spot to catch the sunset. From Ochimizu Observatory, you can see the Kame-ga-oka Cliff, a sheer rock wall naturally formed into the shape of a turtle. 

The Kurose Observation Museum, which is also an art museum, opens up to a view of Okiakime Island and the rocky coastline, depicted in the artwork found in the museum. From Gohama Observatory, the sunset appears to loom over Cape Noma. Twenty-five minutes north, Taniyama Observatory offers a glimpse of the past as it overlooks terraced fields built in the latter half of the Edo Period. The final observatory before arriving back into town is Takasaki-yama, where you can see it all: Hashima-zaki, Eguchi Beach, Fukiage Beach, Sakurajima, Mt. Kinpu, Mt. Nagaya and the Sakinoyama Peninsula.

Japan Eco Track Cycling in Kagoshima

After cycling 90 minutes back into town, reward yourself with a hot bath at Kaseda Kaihin Onsen Yuuraku. The natural hot spring water is rich in minerals and said to relieve fatigue.

Getting There

It takes about 110 minutes from Haneda or Narita airports to Kagoshima Airport or 70 minutes from Kansai International Airport. From Kagoshima Airport, take the bus for Kaseda in central Minamisatsuma (75 minutes). Cycling Terminal Rin Rin, a bike rental facility and lodge, is a one-minute walk from Kaihin Onsen-mae Bus Stop.

Japan Eco Track Cycling in Kagoshima

Japan Eco Track Cycling in Kagoshima

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