Travel / Tourism Spots in Yamagata Area

  • Hoshuyama Risshakuji Temple
    rating-image
    4.5
    900 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Yamagata Pref. Yamagatashi Yamadera 4456-1
    A temple of the Tendai sect, Hoshuyama Risshakuji is located across the Tachiya River from JR Yamadera Station on the Senzan Line. Normally called “Yamadera”, it was opened by Ennin in 860 by decree of Emperor Seiwa. Currently, it is designated a Zao Quasi-National Park, with 1,090,000 square meters green lot with about 30 towers—the most historic holy mountain in the Tohoku region. A famous haiku poet Matsuo Basho wrote “Shizukasa ya iwa ni shimiiru semi no koe (Such stillness / The cries of the cicadas / Sink into the rocks)” here. Its remnants remain as “semi-zuka,” and many poets like Mokichi Saito have poems inscribed here.

    The autumn colors are amazing. I went on a Monday and it was not busy. For 200 yen it is an incredible value.

  • Uesugi-jinja Shrine
    rating-image
    4.0
    258 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Yamagata Pref. Yonezawashi Marunouchi 1-4-13
    A Shinto shrine located in Marunouchi, Yonezawa City, Yamagata Prefecture. The shrine is dedicated to Uesugi Kenshin, a famous commander during the Warring States period and ancestor of the future lord of Yonezawa Domain. The shrine was built on the site of Yonezawa Castle in 1876 and designated an Imperial Shrine of Special Status in 1902. The shrine was destroyed in the Great Yonezawa Fire in 1919; the current buildings were reconstructed in 1923, and visitors can view the beautiful Japanese architecture of the shrine’s main shrine and front shrine. Treasures passed down in the Uesugi clan are kept in the shrine’s Keishoden hall, and many tourists come to view them year round.

    I visited this shrine on my way to our hotel to stay in Kaminoyama. Not being totally expected, I was pretty much surprised to see their beautiful garden, well-maintained shrine, exhibition center...

  • Yamagata Castle Ruins (Kajo Park)
    rating-image
    4.0
    190 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Yamagata Pref. Yamagatashi Kajoumachi 1-7 (management office)
    These castle ruins, in Kajo-machi Yamagata City, is designated as a National Historic Site. It is said that Kaneyori Shiba, the father of the Mogami, built the Yamagata Castle in 1356. Today the ninomaru moat, the earthen mound, and the stone walls remain. A replica of the ninomaru west gate has been reconstructed at the entrance to Kajo Park (Kajo being another name for the castle). Selected as one of Japan's top 100 castles, it is one of the recommended sites to visit in Japan.

    戦国武将・最上義光の時代に造られ、江戸時代には山形藩の政庁であった山形城の敷地は、現在は山形市民の憩いの場となっています。公園の周囲のお堀、大手門、公園の中央に位置する本丸御殿広場とそれを囲う堀や史跡を除けば、各地にある公園と何ら変わらず、ジョギングやペットの散歩、子供たちの遊び場となっています。 基本的に無料で全ての人に解放されていますが、夜間帯には門は閉じられており、中に入ることは出来ません...

  • Zao Ropeway
    rating-image
    4.0
    229 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Yamagata Pref. Yamagatashi Zaouonsen 229-3
    This is a ropeway operating at Zao Onsen, Yamagata City, Yamagata Prefecture, running from Zao Sanroku Station in Zao Onsen town to Juhyo-Kogen Station, and from Juhyo-Kogen Station to Jizo Sanchou Station in Zao Jizoson. Winter season demand is high from skiers who want transport and visitors to the Juyo Light Up Event, and in summer it is used by many mountain climbers. By using a gondola named “Funitel” one can have a pleasant ride without any harsh humps or bumps. In all four seasons, from autumn leaves to frost-covered trees to new spring ones, a visitor can enjoy all of the splendid nature Zao has to offer.

    Our experience was fun and smooth. The ticket is a bit expensive for a round way trip but the view was wonderful and it’s a good way to get to the top and access the crater lake. The Ropeway is very...

  • Roadside Station Tendo Onsen
    rating-image
    4.0
    130 Reviews
    Transportation
    Yamagata Pref. Tendoushi Kuwanomachi 2-3-41
    "Michi-no-Eki (roadside rest facility with many services) Tendo Onsen is a spot where visitors can enjoy ""Shogi piece"" called koma and a pear ""La France"", of which Tendo City boasts the largest production in Japan. ""Shogi piece"" production is demonstrated, and the works of koma artisans, etc. are displayed. As for ""La France"", they sell limited version of sweets such as pies and tarts with processed fruit pulp of ""La France"", as well as gelato using seasonal fruits. A multipurpose outdoor space with playground equipment and a footbath with free-flowing spring water are available, and a fountain rises in the summer, making it a great stopover for families."

    You can get variety of souvenirs here. Many kind of vegetables and fruits are sold here. Its far from the station so you should come here by car or taxi. Especially soba was low price and tasty!

  • Cherryland Sagae
    rating-image
    4.0
    74 Reviews
    Transportation
    Yamagata Sagae-shi
    This roadside station is located along National Route 112 in Kawara, Yakuwa, Sagae City. The largest roadside station in the Tohoku region, Cherryland Sagae is centered around a souvenir store that sells a wide range of Yamagata specialties, such as famous sweets, agricultural produce, local sake and handicrafts. There is also a restaurant and a food court that serve food made using Yamagata beef and Shonai pork. Also, on the other side of the road there is a large cherry orchard called “Hakka Orchard Onuma.” There are also products only available at Cherryland, such as “Jion-ji Temple Golden Sesame Walnut Yubeshi.”

    Its a huge souvenir stores mall. I bought cherry cake and cookies. There was a line in front of the famous ice cream shop. You can choose 2 flavors. I ate white rice and lemon, it was nice.

  • Ken Domon Museum of Photography
    rating-image
    4.5
    96 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Yamagata Pref. Sakatashi Imoriyama 2-13 Inside Iimoriyama Park
    The Ken Domon Museum of Photography is a specialized museum located in Iimoriyama Park along Prefectural Route 355 in the Iimoriyama area of the city of Sakata. Photographer Ken Domon was a native of the area, and the museum contains his entire life's work, about 70,000 photos. The exhibits are changed on a three-month cycle, with each cycle having own theme, so that all the photos are displayed in turn. The museum also contains sculptures and gardens created by artists who were associates of Domon, especially the sculptor Isamu Noguchi.

    I discovered Domon Ken photography, in Rome, when just by chance I saw a huge exposition on his life work. So when we went to Japan, we went to Sakata just to see his museum. We spent a whole...

  • Denkoku-no-Mori Yonezawa City Uesugi Museum
    rating-image
    3.5
    89 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Yamagata Pref. Yonezawashi Marunouchi 1-2-1
    A museum dedicated to the Uesugi clan. Take a bus from Yonezawa Station and get off at the “Uesugijinja-mae” stop. The museum building incorporates traditional Japanese elements and is designed to mesh well with the surrounding scenery. Its collection of several thousand items relating to the Uesugi clan includes National Treasure-designated folding screens depicting the streets of Kyoto at the time from overhead, and the Uesugi-ke Monjo, a large collection of ancient writings and documents. Highlights include an exhibit in the museum’s permanent display collection which uses CG to give visitors a glimpse into the culture and lifestyle of the world of the Uesugi foling screens, as well as the Yozan Theater exhibit, which dramatizes the reforms Uesugi Yozan implemented in the domain’s government.

    特に上杉氏が好きな人には最高の場所! 常設展示と企画展示の2つの展示が行われていた。 常設・企画とも上杉絡み、初めての訪問なので、当然ここの場所から行って全て上杉氏絡みなのだなと思った。 私たちにとっては上杉氏一色で最高であった。

  • Uesugi Clan Mausoleum
    rating-image
    4.0
    79 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Yamagata Pref. Yonezawashi Gobyou 1-5-30
    Just a 5-minute walk from the Gobyo-mae bus stop on the Yamako bus line bound for Onogawa Onsen. This is a cemetery with 11 generations of the Uesugi clan, notably Prince Uesugi Kenshin down to Narisada, interred in beautiful wood structured mausoleums. It is known for being the resting place of Uesugi Kenshin, a famous warrior during Japan's civil war. This cemetery was the 5th to be designated in 1984 as a National Historic Landmark for former feudal lords. During the Uesugi Yukitoro stone lantern Festival illumination, the snow covered stone and paper lanterns are lit making for otherworldly serene atmosphere. The neighboring Houonji Temple was transported from Mt. Kasuga and rebuilt as the Uesugi family temple.

    Tucked away in the western part of town are 2 hectares of peace, tranquility and a stand of 300-400 year old cedar trees. This is also where the first eleven lords of the Uesugi clan are buried, each...

  • Matsugasaki Park (Yonezawa Castle Ruins)
    rating-image
    4.0
    91 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Yamagata Pref. Yonezawashi Marunouchi 1-4-13
    A 10-minute bus ride from Yonezawa Station. Records state that the castle which once stood here was built in 1238 and was used as a residence by the Nagai clan, Date clan, Gamo clan, Naoe clan, and Uesugi clan. The castle was demolished in 1873 and the site made open to the general public as a park for the next seven years. In 1857, the site was turned into a municipal park as part of an urban planning project. The park is surrounded by a 20 to 36 meter wide, 800 meter long moat. Also a renowned destination for cherry blossoms, 200 cherry trees surround the moat and are lit up at night during the blooming season, creating spectacular scenery with their pink blossoms and the red castle bridge reflecting off the surface of the water.

    Yonezawa matsuri is a special matsuri since it commemorates a famous historical battle between two samourai clans. The battle is on the last day of the matsuri and it is worth seeing it. In case of...

  • Homma Museum of Art
    rating-image
    4.0
    71 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Yamagata Pref. Sakatashi Onarichou 7-7
    A garden and art museum a five minute walk from Sakata Station. Built as a garden and villa for the Homma family of wealthy merchants and landowners, the facility was opened to the public as a private art museum in 1947. The museum’s collection consists primarily of works of art passed down for generations in the Homma family, and the museum is filled with ancient writings, antiques, paintings, and other valuable artwork. Other highlights include the Seienkaku, a beautiful wood villa built in the Kyoto style; and the Kakubuen, a traditional garden built around a central pond celebrated as one of the best Japanese gardens in the country and renowned for the beauty of its fall foliage.

    Honma Museum of Art was a quick ten minute walk from the train station. The museum itself was quite disappointing and hardly worth the trip for its small exhibition that didn’t allow photos. First...

  • Yamagata City Folk Museum (Former Saiseikan Hospital Main Building)
    rating-image
    4.0
    91 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Yamagata Yamagata-shi Kajomachi 1-1
    This museum is located inside Kajo Park in Kajo-machi, Yamagata City. Built in 1878 as the prefectural hospital, the “Saiseikan” was relocated and restored, and is now used to exhibit items related to local history and medicine. The building is designated as a National Important Cultural Property.

    A beautiful building with a lovely garden in the middle. The exhibits cover medicine in Japan. I was most impressed by the eye chart that used animals.

  • Sake Museum, Toko Brewery
    rating-image
    4.0
    66 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Yamagata Pref. Yonezawashi Omachi 2-3-22 Yanagi Town Upper Street
    This library museum is located in Oh-machi, Yonezawa City, the Kojima Sake Brewery, the producer of the choice sake, Toko. One can learn about the culture and history of sake making through this exhibit displaying the old instruments and records housed in the sake cellar that has been renovated, while preserving the original structure. In the permanent exhibit room, the feudal lord Uesugi Yozan Hall, is displayed materials pertaining to feudal lord Uesugi Yosan, the ancient head of the Yonezawa clan. Here one can learn of his government and character.

    This museum is set up in a former sake brewery to evoke a sake brewery of at least a century ago. There is even a very unusual ceramic vat once used for fermentation. Other barrels and brewing...

  • Roadside Station Chokai Furatto
    rating-image
    4.0
    36 Reviews
    Transportation
    Yamagata Pref. Akumigunyuzamachi Sugasato Sugano 308-1
    A roadside station located along National Route 7 in Sugano Sugasato, Yuza Town, Akumi County. The facility hosts a farm fresh shop selling local agricultural products and fresh seafood; a shop selling local specialty products; a café serving seafood rice bowls, curry, and set meals; a light meal corner; ramen corner; and bakery. You can also take sashimi and grilled fish bought at the farm fresh shop to the cafeteria and enjoy it there as a set with rice.

    道の駅のスタンプ帳でソフトクリームが50円引きでしたので、だだちゃ豆ソフト350円を試してみました。寒河江のチェリーランドで食べたものの方が豆の香りがしっかりしてツブツブも残っていました。

  • Yamadera Basho Museum
    rating-image
    4.0
    56 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Yamagata Pref. Yamagatashi Yamadera Minamiin 4223
    This is a memorial museum for Matsuo Basho, the renowned haiku poet, located along Prefectural Route 19 in Yamadera, Yamagata City. The museum host various events such as haiku contests along with the permanent exhibit displaying drafts written in Basho's own hand, letters, and other archival materials pertaining to his life, as well as a theater corner documenting his life. The museum has tatami mat training rooms and tea rooms available for seminars or tea ceremonies and other traditional cultural art events.

    Basho is considered one of the best, if not the best, Haiku poet. If one is really, really interested in this art form, this museum is well worth a visit. If Haiku is not your thing, visiting the...

  • Yamagata Museum of Art
    rating-image
    4.0
    53 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Yamagata Pref. Yamagatashi Otemachi 1-63
    This museum is located across the way to the east of Kajo Park in Ote-machi, Yamagata City. Exhibited here are not only the Japanese works of Matsuo Basho's Three Mountains of Dewa writings, Yosa Buson's The Narrow Road through the Provinces scroll, but also a collection of Modern French works including Monet and Renoir. The museum also hosts various planned exhibits related to the collections, the Yamagata General Art Exhibits, local art exhibits, photography exhibits, and calligraphy exhibits.

    Living in Paris, I go quite often to Orsay or marmottan museums. The 40 paintings exposed (monet, pissaro, van dongen, Chagall,... ) are very fine. There are very well representating the period...

  • Former Main Residence of Homma Family and Villa “O-tana”
    rating-image
    4.0
    75 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Yamagata Pref. Sakatashi Nibanchou 12-13
    This samurai-style villa built in 1768 by Mitsuoka Homma—the third landlord of Homma Family, wealthy merchant family of Dewa—served as lodgings for the Shogun’s inspection envoys. Featuring a combination of samurai-style and merchant-style construction, this building would be unusual anywhere in the country. The red pines are also wonderful, and are said to live over 400 years.

    A very nicely preserved home of an upper class. Very spacious and interesting architecture of Japanese home using the verendas. I liked the simple decor that made look elegant and functional.

  • Koiwai Farm's solitary cherry tree
    rating-image
    4.5
    69 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Yamagata Sakata-shi Hiyoshicho 1-2-20
    This is an entertainment complex in 1 Chome Hiyoshi-cho, Sakata City. Built in the remodeled Soma-ya, a famed Sakata restaurant, the 1st floor features Teahouse Kutsurogi Dokoro, and the second floor has a dining theater where you can watch Maiko dances while you dine, as well as the Takehisa Yumeji Art Museum. The main Soma-ya manor was destroyed in the Shonai earthquake of 1894, but was soon rebuilt and is now designated a Registered Tangible Cultural Property.

    Somaro Maiko Teahouse dates back to the Edo Period to when Sakata City served as a key port in the domestic trade network of an isolationist Japan. During this period the Shonai Region produced...

  • Honzan Jionji Temple
    rating-image
    4.5
    38 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Yamagata Pref. Sagaeshi Jionji Cadastral 31
    Honzan Jionji Temple is located in Jionji in the city of Sagae. It is said to have been founded in 746 by Baramon Sojo. During the Edo period (1615-1868) it controlled 18 villages and land that produced about 505,095 liters of rice, making it the most powerful temple in the Tohoku region. Even though its influence has shrunk in the present day, its former precincts have been designated a National Historic Site, and it contains many Important Cultural Properties, including its main building and collection of Buddhist statues, as well as Jionji Bugaku, a type of dance performed during the Issai Kyoe Festival, held on May 5 every year.

    As a previous noted, visit the museum at the bottom of the hill for an overall understanding of this mountain complex going back well over a thousand years. There are artefacts, some explanations in...

  • Chidokan Shonai Domain School
    rating-image
    4.0
    70 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Yamagata Pref. Tsuruokashi Babachou 11-45
    Sakai Tadaari, the ninth lord of Tsuruoka Domain, established this domain school in 1805 with the aim of reforming samurai customs and cultivating surpassing individuals. The school’s educational policy focused on further strengthening each student’s innate talents. Today, the school is a designated National Historic Site and is open to the general public; facilities such as front Mikado gate, Confucian temple, and lecture hall remain intact. This facility is the only domain school still in existence in the Tohoku region.

    Amazing it is still there, the old school for young Samuraiunder King Sakai , as it used to be. Subject included localized Analects of Confucius ethics...

Yamagata Areas

around-area-map

Although often overlooked, Yamagata prefecture by no means lacks appeal: the Yamadera temple trail through the mountains, deliciously tender Yonezawa wagyu, and over 100 steaming hot springs, most notably Zao Onsen, await visitors. When winter comes, the snowcapped peaks become dotted with skiers by day and onsen-goers by night, while summer brings the celebration of juicy Yamagata cherries.

Yamagata Photo Album

Browse Interests