A great way to round off a day or few days of sightseeing in Nagasaki is to see the whole city from up high. On the west side of the city, Mount Inasa at 333 metres high, provides one of the best viewing points in the area. Being a park, Mount Inasa offers not only an observation deck but restaurant facilities, hiking trails, and other amenities to enjoy. The observation deck can be reached by car, bus, on foot, or via the ropeway. In our opinion, the most picturesque experience is provided by the ropeway ride to the top. Also, the view of the city is impressive at any time during the day, but it is the most beautiful with the city lit up at night.
To reach the ropeway station take the local bus from Nagasaki Station or walk (5 minutes) from the Takaramachi streetcar stop. Once at the ropeway station you can choose between a one-way ticket at 720 yen per adult, or a round-trip ticket for 1230 yen per adult. The one-way ticket works well if you are going up Mount Inasa early in the day and coming back down either via the local bus, taxi, or walking down the trails. If you are heading up in the evening, and especially close to the closing time, you should purchase the round-trip ticket or else finding a way to get back down might be challenging. The observation deck and mountain park are open all night long but public transportation stops and the tourist facilities at the top close at 10pm. If you are driving then you can hang out at the top for as long as you want without concern.
Once at the top and off the gondola, a short walk through a tunnel is still required to get you to the observation deck; at night, this pathway is lit up with fluorescent lights that change colours every few seconds creating a mystical atmosphere. Cross the tunnel to reach the radio antennas outside the observation deck building. These antennas are also part of the night experience thanks to a daily light show from sunset until 10pm. The lighting patterns vary by season and at times are complemented with a special music set.
But the main reason to make the trip to the top is the observation deck and its 360 degree view of Nagasaki. From here you can see the whole city sprawling over the mountains from the harbour at the south to the Peace Park at the north, and beyond. At this point it becomes clear why this view is recognized as one of the top night views in the world. The feeling of wonder is inevitable. Always check the weather prior to going up the mountain, on foggy evenings the beautiful view could obstructed, so save the disappointment unless you want the fog in your pictures. This part of the observation deck does not close and you can enjoy the view for as long as you wish. If you plan to do so remember that transportation is limited and do bring something to keep yourself warm, even during the summer.
One of the Top Night Views in the World
- Nagasaki City Office Bunka Tourist Station Nagasaki Ropeway
- Nagasaki Nagasaki-shi Asahimachi 8-23