Nature Spots in Shiga Area

  • Makino Highland
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    Travel / Tourism
    Makino Town Makino 931 Takanoshima City Shiga Prefecture
    These outdoor facilities are located in Makino, Makino Town, Takashima City. You'll find a campsite where you can barbeque or experience harvesting crops, sports facilities such as a gym, tennis courts, a ground golf course, and even hot springs facilities and a restaurant. This location can be used as a ski slope in winter, or as a snow camp field (reservations strictly required).

    I was there to see the Metasequoia trees turning to its blazing autumn colors but unfortunately I was too early. The Metasequoia leaves were still green in the first week of November. But I manage to...

  • Lake Biwa
    Travel / Tourism
    Shiga Prefecture
    This is Japan’s largest lake with a general surface area of approximately 670 square kilometers. Water from nearly 460 class A rivers flows into the lake, and of those, 118 rivers flow directly into Lake Biwa. The origin of the lake is estimated to be approximately four million years ago, and although the lake changed location and appeared and disappeared with the changing eras, the current Lake Biwa was shaped about 430,000 years ago. Together with Lake Baikal and the Caspian Sea, Lake Biwa is one of the world’s 20 oldest lakes, and every year approximately 50,000 waterfowl migrate to the lake, which is why its wetlands are registered under the Ramsar Convention.
  • Kaizu-Osaki Peninsula
    Travel / Tourism
    Shizuoka Prefecture Takashima-shi Makino Town Kaizu
    A scenic area situated along Prefectural Route 557 in Kaizu Makino-cho, Takashima City. A reef formed by erosion, the area is also known as one of the Eight Views of Lake Biwa, traditional scenic views of the lake, its title being “Dawn Fog—Kaizu Osaki Peninsula Reef.” In addition, the area is a renowned destination for cherry blossoms in the spring; selected for inclusion in Japan’s Top 100 Cherry Blossom Spots, some 600 Yoshino cherries 50 years or older grow in a four-kilometer-long row here.
  • Lake Yogo
    Travel / Tourism
    Nagahama-shi, Shiga Prefecture
    A lake 6.4 meters in circumference located in Kawanami Yogo-cho, Nagahama City. Many curious legends are connected to the lake, such as the Swan maiden and the legend of Princess Kikuishi, and the lake is also known as “Mirror Lake.” The lake is a popular destination for Japanese pond smelt fishing in winter, while in spring visitors come to enjoy the sight of the blossoms of the rapeseed plants and Oshima and yaezakura cherry trees which grow along the shore. The Lake Yogo Chery Blossom Festival is held here when the cherry trees come into bloom.
  • Mt. Ibukiyama
    Travel / Tourism
    Shiga Pref. Maibarashi Ueno
    A mountain located in Maibara City. Situated on the border between Gifu Prefecture and Shiga Prefecture, the mountain is 1,377 meters high, making it the highest mountain in Shiga. A historically important mountain which even appears in such ancient records as the “Kojiki” and the “Nihon shoki,” since ancient times the mountain has also been seen as sacred and is deeply connected to the Shugendo syncretic faith. The mountain boasts abundant natural beauty, including flower fields at its peak designated a National Natural Monument; visitors to the summit can get a sweeping view of Lake Biwa and Mt. Hiei.
  • Chikubushima Island
    Travel / Tourism
    Shiga Pref. Nagahamashi Hayazakichou Takeyoshima
    An island two kilometers in circumference located in the northern part of Lake Biwa. The island is the location of the Hogon-ji Temple, counted as one of Japan’s “Three Great Benten Shrines” alongside Itsukushima and Enoshima, in addition to being the 30th temple on the Saigoku Kannon Pilgrimage. Chikubushima Shrine, a Shinto shrine dedicated to Ichikishima-hime-no-mikoto, also stands on the island. The Hogon-ji’s large karamon gate, said to be the last extant piece of the original Osaka Castle; and Chikubushima Shrine’s main shrine building, transported here from Fushimi-Momoyama Castle, are both designated National Treasures.
  • Kawachi Wind Cave
    Travel / Tourism
    Shiga Pref. Inukamiguntagachou Kawachi Miyamae
    A limestone cave located in Miyamae Kawachi, Taga Town, Inukami County, Shiga Prefecture. The cave is believed to have been formed some 5.5 million years ago in a karst system in the Unzen Mountains. Visitors are only allowed to go about 200 meters into the cave, but it actually extends 10,020 meters in length, making it the third longest cave in the country. The cave has been designated a Natural Monument by the prefecture.
  • Mt. Fujiwara
    Travel / Tourism
    Inabe, Mie Prefecture
    This mountain has an altitude of 1144 meters and is located in the northern part of the Suzuka Mountains. Located on the border of Mie Prefecture and Shiga Prefecture, the summit is relatively flat. Amur adonis and Eranthis pinnatifida grow in abundance here, and it was chosen as one of the 100 Best Flower Mountains in Japan and also one of the New Flower Mountains 100 thanks to this scenery. Many tourists visit this location because the flowers all bloom at once in the spring. In addition, there is an observatory on the southern side, and visitors can see as far as Nobi Plain and Ise Plain, and even as far as Ise Bay and the Kiso Three Riversin a spectacular panoramic view. It is a famously beautiful mountain that can be counted as one of Japan 300 Famous Mountains and one of the 100 Most Famous of the Kansai Region.
  • Mishimaike Pond
    Travel / Tourism
    Shiga Pref. Maibarashi Ikeshita
    A pond located in Ikeshita, Maibara City. Created some 700 years ago as an agricultural reservoir, a variety of animals live here and the pond is also visited by migrating birds. In 1957, it was confirmed that mallards were breeding here naturally and the pond was designated a Natural Monument as the southernmost natural mallard breeding ground by the prefecture. The pond is also a renowned destination for viewing cherry blossoms in spring.
  • Oisugi Virgin Beech Forest
    Travel / Tourism
    Shiga Pref. Takashimashi Kutsukioisugi
    A primeval beech forest located halfway up Mt. Mikunidake in Kutsuki-Katsuragawa Prefectural Natural Park, a park which consists of an area extending from the eastern tip of the Tanba Mountains to the western slopes of the Hira Mountains. Due to the local climate and other factors, the forest has remained virtually untouched by human hands, and even in western Japan, an area where many 250 to 350-year-old beech and Japanese horse chestnut trees grow, this is a precious example of preserved primeval beech forest.
  • Colony of Eastern Skunk Cabbage
    Travel / Tourism
    Shiga Takashima-shi Imazucho Hirokawa
    "A three-minute walk from Zazenso-mae bus stop. This colony of eastern skunk cabbage blooms in most years from mid-February to early March. The name of this plant in Japanese, ""zazenso"" (literally ""zazen meditation grass""), is derived from the appearance of its purple flowers, which look like a monk meditating in the seated, zazen position. If you come early enough in the season, you just might get to see the plants flowering amidst lingering snow. It is rare for eastern skunk cabbage to grow in such a large colony, and this one lies in what is believed to be the plant's southernmost limit in Japan. In 1986, the colony was designated a Specific Plant Community by the Ministry of the Environment; in 1989, it became a Green Preservation Zone under Shiga Prefecture's Natural Environment Conservation Ordinance."
  • Lake Biwa
    Travel / Tourism
    Shiga Otsu-shi Hamaotsu 5-chome
  • Mt.Watamuki
    Travel / Tourism
    Shiga Koka-shi
  • Eigenji Lake
    Travel / Tourism
    Shiga Higashiomi-shi
  • Mt.Toragozen
    Travel / Tourism
    Shiga Nagahama-shi
  • Biwako Suigen no Mori Takashima
    Travel / Tourism
    Shiga Takashima-shi Imazucho Fukashimizu 2405-1
  • Hata no Tanada
    Travel / Tourism
    Shiga Takashima-shi Hata
  • Nikkoyama (Taki Yamajo Ato)
    Travel / Tourism
    Shiga Ritto-shi Rokujizo
  • Eboshiiwa
    Travel / Tourism
    Shiga Maibara-shi Iso
  • Nakasendomigakuharitoge
    Travel / Tourism
    Shiga Pref. Hikoneshi Torimotochou

Shiga Areas

around-area-map

Visitors to Shiga prefecture are almost always hopping east across the prefectural border from Kyoto, and they are almost certainly Lake Biwa-bound. Covering an area of 670 square kilometers, Lake Biwa makes up the bulk of Shiga prefecture, with beautiful lakeside paths that offer myriad walking and cycling opportunities, connecting a string of museums, shrines, and picturesque views that finally lead you to Hikone Castle on the eastern side of the lake.

Shiga Photo Album

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