fbpx
    • Spring
      • spring outdoor japan shinano discovery

        2022 Spring Tours and Travel

        Check out these green season tours and experiences across Japan!
        video

        Finding the Flow from Kansai to Kochi

        Shikoku’s many mountains, valleys and proximity to the ocean has made it a hidden gem for rafting, kayaking and canyoning enthusiasts willing to take a step or two further from the Golden Route of Kyoto and Osaka.

        Solace and Giant Salamanders in Akiota

        Just beyond Hiroshima City is a tranquil outdoor destination home to some of Japan's last remaining oosanshouo, the elusive giant salamander.

        2022 Art Events in Japan

        Two of Japan's biggest art events return this year: the Setouchi Triennale on the Seto Inland Sea Islands and Niigata's Echigo Tsumari Art Field.
        Kyoto Oni Trail Outdoor Japanvideo

        The Oni Trail: Hiking Coastal Kyoto

        The mystical oni is prevalent in Japanese children’s stories, usually as a way to scare kids straight. Adventure Travel Kyoto is shedding a new light on this folklore and developing a new hiking route in the countryside of Kyoto.
    • 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.
    • 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.
    • Winter
      • Spring Skiing in Japan 2022

        It may be spring in Japan but you can still ski in select ski resorts open all the way to Golden Week.
        Indy Pass Outdoor Japan Tohoku

        The Resistance

        The Indy Pass arrives in Japan to bring avid riders to local resorts that punch above their weight class and offer varied terrain.
        Shinano Town Outdoor Japan

        Go Deep into Shinano

        Discover Snow Country in Shinano Town in northern Nagano, popular for its deep powder but also its mountainous winter scenery.
        Evergreen Outdoor Center Japan

        Japan Snow Guide: Winter 2022 Events & No...

        Check out the latest news and winter events held at ski resorts all over Japan in 2022!
        video

        Hachimantai’s Powder History

        Discover powder and ski culture deep in Tohoku at Hachimantai.
    • Near Tokyo
    • Near Kyoto
      • video

        Finding the Flow from Kansai to Kochi

        Shikoku’s many mountains, valleys and proximity to the ocean has made it a hidden gem for rafting, kayaking and canyoning enthusiasts willing to take a step or two further from the Golden Route of Kyoto and Osaka.
        Kyoto Oni Trail Outdoor Japanvideo

        The Oni Trail: Hiking Coastal Kyoto

        The mystical oni is prevalent in Japanese children’s stories, usually as a way to scare kids straight. Adventure Travel Kyoto is shedding a new light on this folklore and developing a new hiking route in the countryside of Kyoto.
    • All Regions
    • Article Map
    • Ocean and Beach
      • Solace and Giant Salamanders in Akiota

        Just beyond Hiroshima City is a tranquil outdoor destination home to some of Japan's last remaining oosanshouo, the elusive giant salamander.
        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...

        Enjoy the clear waters of Kochi by snorkeling and surfing while staying at a refurbished hotel committed to sustainability.
    • River and Lake
      • video

        Finding the Flow from Kan...

        Shikoku’s many mountains, valleys and proximity to the ocean has made it a hidden gem for rafting, kayaking and canyoning enthusiasts willing to take a step or two further from the Golden Route of Kyoto and Osaka.

        Solace and Giant Salamand...

        Just beyond Hiroshima City is a tranquil outdoor destination home to some of Japan's last remaining oosanshouo, the elusive giant salamander.
        sawa nobori wakasa fukuivideo

        Shower Climbing High Abov...

        Learn about the uniquely Japanese activity of sawanobori, navigating up rivers and waterfalls, in the Wakasa region of Fukui Prefecture.
        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.
    • Mountain and Land
    • Sky
    • Snow and Ice
      • Spring Skiing in Japan 2022

        It may be spring in Japan but you can still ski in select ski resorts open all the way to Golden Week.
        Indy Pass Outdoor Japan Tohoku

        The Resistance

        The Indy Pass arrives in Japan to bring avid riders to local resorts that punch above their weight class and offer varied terrain.
        Shinano Town Outdoor Japan

        Go Deep into Shinano

        Discover Snow Country in Shinano Town in northern Nagano, popular for its deep powder but also its mountainous winter scenery.
        Evergreen Outdoor Center Japan

        Japan Snow Guide: Winter 2022 Events & No...

        Check out the latest news and winter events held at ski resorts all over Japan in 2022!
        video

        Hachimantai’s Powder History

        Discover powder and ski culture deep in Tohoku at Hachimantai.
    • Travel
      • sawa nobori wakasa fukuivideo

        Shower Climbing High Above Wakasa Bay

        Learn about the uniquely Japanese activity of sawanobori, navigating up rivers and waterfalls, in the Wakasa region of Fukui Prefecture.
        Kyoto Oni Trail Outdoor Japanvideo

        The Oni Trail: Hiking Coastal Kyoto

        The mystical oni is prevalent in Japanese children’s stories, usually as a way to scare kids straight. Adventure Travel Kyoto is shedding a new light on this folklore and developing a new hiking route in the countryside of Kyoto.

        Market Watch: Oiso’s Shishimai Marche

        Check out this farmers' market in the beachside town of Oiso.
        Shinano Town Outdoor Japan

        Go Deep into Shinano

        Discover Snow Country in Shinano Town in northern Nagano, popular for its deep powder but also its mountainous winter scenery.
        Protect our Winter POW Japan

        Protecting Japan’s Pow

        Professional snowboarder and environmentalist Goro Komatsu fights climate change with Protect our Winters Japan.
    • Food and Drinks
      • sawa nobori wakasa fukuivideo

        Shower Climbing High Above Wakasa Bay

        Learn about the uniquely Japanese activity of sawanobori, navigating up rivers and waterfalls, in the Wakasa region of Fukui Prefecture.
        Kyoto Oni Trail Outdoor Japanvideo

        The Oni Trail: Hiking Coastal Kyoto

        The mystical oni is prevalent in Japanese children’s stories, usually as a way to scare kids straight. Adventure Travel Kyoto is shedding a new light on this folklore and developing a new hiking route in the countryside of Kyoto.

        Market Watch: Oiso’s Shishimai Marche

        Check out this farmers' market in the beachside town of Oiso.
        Shinano Town Outdoor Japan

        Go Deep into Shinano

        Discover Snow Country in Shinano Town in northern Nagano, popular for its deep powder but also its mountainous winter scenery.
        Protect our Winter POW Japan

        Protecting Japan’s Pow

        Professional snowboarder and environmentalist Goro Komatsu fights climate change with Protect our Winters Japan.
    • Races and Events
      • spring outdoor japan shinano discovery

        2022 Spring Tours and Travel

        Check out these green season tours and experiences across Japan!

        2022 Art Events in Japan

        Two of Japan's biggest art events return this year: the Setouchi Triennale on the Seto Inland Sea Islands and Niigata's Echigo Tsumari Art Field.

        2022 Spring Races & Festivals

        The start of the green season is a great time to start trail running, cycling and hiking. Check out these races, outdoor events and traditional festivals held this spring.
        Evergreen Outdoor Center Japan

        Japan Snow Guide: Winter 2022 Events & No...

        Check out the latest news and winter events held at ski resorts all over Japan in 2022!

Fall in Love with Kawazu

Travel in Izu Kawazu

The coastal town of Kawazu on the Izu Peninsula, Shizuoka Prefecture, seems to have it all: stunning waterfalls to hike, a river lined with Kawazu-zakura cherry blossoms in spring, wide beaches great for surfing and diving, and to top it off, outdoor hot springs overlooking impressive vistas. The proximity between the mountains and the ocean, onsen and the clear water cascading down the valley make Kawazu a hidden gem for outdoor enthusiasts. 

Kawazu’s Seven Falls

Kawazu’s most famous attraction is Nanadaru Falls, the seven waterfalls at the foot of the Amagi Mountains just above the town that received two stars from the Michelin Green Guides. These falls formed when a volcano called Noboriominami erupted approximately 25,000 years ago, creating dramatic rock formations by rivers, cliffs and beaches in the region, hence Izu Peninsula’s dramatic landscape.

Kawazu

In Kawazu, you can enjoy the rare experience of relaxing in an onsen right in front of a majestic waterfall. The impressive 30-meter Odaru Falls at the base of Nanadaru Falls is part of Nanadaru Onsen. Guests can use the waterfall onsen, underground baths and private indoor baths. 

To see the other waterfalls, follow an easy one-kilometer walking trail. Along the way, you’ll find statues depicting the heroine from Yasunari Kawabata’s short novel “Izu no Odoriko” which is set in this area. 

Kawazu

If you’re driving or taking the bus to these falls, you’ll most likely use the Kawazu Nanadaru Loop Bridge, an imposing and dizzying spiral bridge along National Route 414 high above the valley floor.

Kawazu

You can take the bus to Odaru Iriguchi or Mizudare, although it’s recommended to start at Mizudare and make your way down to Odaru Iriguchi where most of the shops are. 

The start of the walking trail from Odaru Falls is lined with wasabi and soba (buckwheat noodle) shops. The region produces high-quality wasabi (Japanese horseradish) thanks to Kawazu’s clear running mountain water. 

Kawazu

“Water gives life to wasabi,” says Nobuaki Inaba, a wasabi farmer and owner of Wasabi-en Kadoya, popular for its wasabidon (a simple yet surprisingly delicious dish of rice topped with bonito flakes and local wasabi). “You can’t grow good wasabi without clean water and abundant nature. Wasabi thrives here because of the nutrients in our rivers.” 

Kawazu

Kawazu stays warm through to the end of October, but stays relatively subtropical year round. Visit early to mid-December for kouyou (autumn leaves changing color). The coldest months are in January and February, which is when you can see the Kawazu-zakura cherry blossoms. The waterfalls are best viewed at end of May to June during rainy season when water levels are high.

“One of the best things about living in Kawazu is that you can really experience the seasons,” says Shoji Suzuki, owner of Aoki-no-Saka Ryokan Inn at the base of the loop bridge. Suzuki and his wife enjoy Kawazu’s nature year round, whether it’s surfing at Imaihama Beach or hiking in the mountains. “It’s a place where the mountains, rivers and ocean come together.”

To get even closer to Kawazu’s waterfalls, Kura-Run Outdoors offers canyoning tours in a tributary of the Kawazu River. Although they only offer one course, this tour is a series of fun natural slides and small waterfalls. Tours are available from end of May to October.

Beaches at Kawazu

Imaihama Beach is said to be one of the most beautiful shoal beaches in Izu. It’s only a two-minute walk from Imaihama Kaigan Station and near many ryokans. Imaihama is a shallow beach break with mixed sand and reef. There are waves year round but especially during spring to autumn. Surf shops like Soul Surf provide board rentals and lessons. 

Kawazu

Even if you’re not staying at Imaihama, set aside an hour or so for Funado no Banya, an outdoor rotenburo bath overlooking the ocean. It is not big, but its views make people feel as if they are floating in the sea. At the base, there is a barbecue facility and ingredients such as local seafood. 

Kawazu
Kawazu

As for nightlife, drop by Anagura, a unique bar built into a cave once used for mining stones for building the Edo Castle in Tokyo. The smaller Kawazuhama Beach is not as crowded with quiet, shallow waters good for swimming. It makes up for its lack of size with high-quality clear water, and is only a three-minute walk from Kawazu Station. 

Further south, Shobuzawa Diving Center offers diving and snorkeling tours. Divers can enjoy wreck diving and see Ise-ebi lobsters, nudibranch, catsharks, sturgeons, stingrays, Japanese butterfish and schools of wrasses and horse mackerels. Night dives, beginner-friendly dives and snorkeling tours are also available.

Getting There

Kawazu sits on the southeastern coast of the Izu Peninsula in Shizuoka Prefecture and is a three-hour drive or train ride from Tokyo. While the locals take pride in the Kawazu-zakura that attract thousands every February, Kawazu can be enjoyed year round over three to four days.

Kawazu

The best way to get to Kawazu is the train to Kawazu Station on the Izukyu Line. You can also travel in style on the JR Odoriko Limited Express Train direct from Tokyo, Shinagawa, Kawasaki and Yokohama stations. 

While it’s recommended to rent a car, the town itself is walkable and there are buses direct to attractions such as Kawazu Nanadaru Falls (one way costs ¥670) and local trains. 

As Kawazu has long been a beach, mountain and hot spring resort, there are many types of accommodation including traditional ryokan with hot springs, backpacker guesthouses and family-friendly B&Bs. 

For more information, visit Explore Izu.

Travel in Izu Kawazu

[novo-map id=2 individual=”yes”]

Outdoor Japan logo tree

Related

Leave a reply

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Latest posts

Categories