Fukushima Tourist Information  ~Places to Go in Fukushima~

Look at pictures on the cover of our monthly “Fukushima-no-Shinro”


Tourist Information: Sightseeing in Fukushima
On the cover of our monthly journal ”Fukushima-no-Shinro,” literally “Fukushima’s Course”, we introduce various sightseeing spots or beautiful landscapes in Fukushima Prefecture every month.

松川浦の文字島(もじしま) 【相馬市】

December Edition
Moji Island in Matsukawaura Lagoon,Soma City
Matsukawaura Lagoon is one of the “100 Best Sceneries in Japan,” and is also called “Little Matsushima,” named after Matsushima Islands, one of the Three Views of Japan located in Miyagi Prefecture. Matsukawaura used to thrive as a resort area for the Soma Nakamura Clan. Moji Island, situated at Iwanoko District, is one of the “12 Best Views of Matsukawaura” which was designated by a feudal lord of the Soma Domain in the late 17th century. The island has been a popular sightseeing spot since that time. Though Matsukawaura was seriously damaged by the large tsunami triggered by Great East Japan Earthquake in 2011, the Matsukawaura Big Bridge reopened this April for the first time in six years. Now is the best season for seafood cuisine at Matsukawaura such as crab and anglerfish dishes. Visit Soma to see the beautiful spots and enjoy the winter delicacies!
【Directions: Approx. 20 min by car from Soma IC, Joban Expressway】

Location of the Spots
Number on the Map Month Location
1 January Iwaki City
2 February Shimogo Town
3 March Date City
4 April Shirakawa City
5 May Koriyama City
6 June Aizu-Wakamatsu City
7 July Minami-Soma City
8 August Iwaki City
9 September Fukushima City
10 October Hinoemata Village
11 November Tamura City
12 December Soma City


Back Numbers

11月 | November

朴橋(ほおのきばし)のお人形様 【田村市】

November Edition
Mr.Doll of Hoonoki-Bashi,Tamura City
From the Edo Period, in the villages along the Iwaki Highway around Funehiki-machi,Tamura City, there has been a custom of people making and worshipping human-shaped dolls of gods and have renewed them every year. The dolls are called “Oningyo-sama.” They have been passed down to the three areas including here in Hoonoki-Bashi, and are designated as Fukushima Prefectural Important Intangible Cultural Properties. The doll in the picture is 4 meters tall and is holding a sword and a Japanese pole weapon, which looks as if he keeps the community safe, warding off evil. His hair looks brown because this picture was taken in autumn. Every April, the “Koromogae” or seasonal change of clothing ceremony is held. The doll’s hair and clothing become then refreshed, covered with fresh cedar leaves. It would be quite refreshing to see the brand-new doll.
【Directions: Approx. 15 min by car from Funehiki Miharu IC, Ban-Etsu Expressway】

10月 | October

檜枝岐村 【檜枝岐村】

October Edition
Picturesque Scenery in Deep Aizu, Hinoemata Village
Hinoemata Village is a small village with a population of 600, located in the most southwestern area of Fukushima Prefecture. The village is a gate to Oze National Park, which spreads across Fukushima, Tochigi, Gunma and Niigata Prefectures. Surrounded by rich nature, Hinoemata is regarded as the “Village of Tradition,” which retains a culture of its own. It is also home to “Hinoemata Kabuki,” a traditional Japanese stage drama, and “Yamodo (山人)Dishes”, a unique cuisine for mountain people such as “Hatto” made from wheat flour and “Tachi-Soba” buckwheat noodles. The roadside station “Oze-Hinoemata” newly opened in the village this August, while it has been 10 years since Oze was independently designated as a national park. You might want to go on a hike to “Mini Oze Park,” located in the center of the village. It is a miniature-sized version of Oze National Park. Now let’s go to Hinoemata Village together!
【Directions: Approx.70 min by car from Aizu-Kogen Ozeguchi Station, Aizu Railway Line】

9月 | September

五色沼「魔女の瞳」 【福島市】

September Edition
Goshikinuma Pond ”Witch’s Eye”, Fukushima City
When you hear “Goshikinuma,” literally a five-colored lake or pond in Japanese, most of you may think of a group of lakes or ponds, including Bishamon Lake, located in Urabandai Marshes in the Aizu Area. In fact, there is also a pond called “Goshikinuma” in the Azuma Mountain Range in Fukushima City. The pond is so beautiful with the mysterious colors of cobalt blue that it is nicknamed “Witch’s Eye.” To have a view of this pond like this picture, you have to climb up to the top of Mt.Issaikyo, 1949m above sea level, from Jododaira Marshes at an elevation of about 1600m situated in the middle of the Bandai-Azuma Skyline highway. With about 90 minutes of mountain climbing, you would be awarded the magnificent scene of this exquisite caldera lake.
【Directions: Approx.60 min by car from Fukushima-Nishi IC, Tohoku Expressway to Jododaira, the Bandai-Azuma Skyline】

8月 | August

いわき花火大会 【いわき市】

August Edition
Iwaki Fireworks Festival, Iwaki City
Firework displays are one of the popular summer features in Japan and are held everywhere across the country at this time of the year. At Aquamarine Park in Onahama, Iwaki City, “The Iwaki Firework Displays” will be held on Saturday, August 5. As many as 12,000 traditional Japanese fireworks will be launched one after another, being synchronized with latest hit songs as well as old movie hits. People are fascinated by the magnificent night view of the old sky where nothing obstructs this spectacular show. Enjoy the festival and try biting into a minced swordfish cutlet, a popular “Local Gourmet.”
【Directions: Approx.20 min by car from Iwaki-Yumoto IC, Joban Expressway】

7月 | July

南相馬市博物館 【南相馬市】

July Edition
Minami-Soma City Museum, Minami-Soma City
Soma Nomaoi, or the wild horse-chasing festival, is annually held for 3 days in July (from 29th to 31st 2017) in the Soma District, the northern coastal area of Fukushima Prefecture. The festival features a spectacular battle scene from the warring period around 1000 years ago. Minami-Soma City Museum is located next to the venue of Soma Nomaoi “Shinki-Sodatsu-Sen” competition, a highlight of the festival in which horsemen are competing to catch the “goshinki,” the sacred flag dropping down from the sky shot by a firework rocket. The museum permanently displays pictures, armor and festival tools, as well as a diorama of the God Flag Competition. So, this museum is really worth visiting especially for those who have missed the real Soma Nomaoi Festival.【Directions: Approx. 10 min by car from JR Joban Line Haranomachi Station】

6月 | June

会津さざえ堂 【会津若松市】

June Edition
Aizu Sazaedo, Aizu-Wakamatsu City
Aizu Sazaedo is a hexagonal hall with the height of 16.5 meters, which was constructed in 1796, the late Edo Period. It is located on Mt. Iimori which is famous for Byakkotai, a military unit consisting of only boys in the Aizu Domain during the Boshin War in mid-19th century. Inside the building, you can find a globally unique structure of a dual spiral slope, where visitors can walk up and down without passing each other on their way, because the upslope becomes a downslope at the top (,as this picture shows). Once, there used to be statues of the Saigoku 33 Kannon Pilgrimage located along the slope, so visiting Sazaedo was said to mean paying homage to them. Sazaedo is now designated as a National Important Cultural Property.
【Directions: Approx. 15 min by car from Aizu-Wakamatsu IC, Ban-Etsu Expressway/ or 5 minutes’ walk from Haikarasan or Akabe “Iimoriyama-shita” bus stop 】

5月 | May

安積歴史博物館 【郡山市】

May Edition
Asaka History Museum, Koriyama City
Asaka History Museum is a museum which make use of former Fukushima Prefecture Junior High School, located on the grounds of what is present Asaka High School. It was completed as a western-style building like Rokumei-kan Pavilion in Tokyo, built in 1889. And in 1977, it was designated as a National Important Cultural Property because it was considered a historic architecture of the most sophisticated skills in construction at that time. The building displays the education-related records of the Meiji Period. It is also used as a venue for events, including as a location site for a NHK TV special drama.
【Directions: Approx. 15 min by bus from JR Tohoku Shinkansen Koriyama Station】

4月 | April

南湖公園 【白河市】

April Edition
Nanko Park, Shirakawa City
Nanko Park is considered to be the oldest Japanese-style park, constructed in 1801 by Sadanobu Matsudaira, a renowned lord of the Shirakawa domain. Nanko means “southern lake” in Japanese. His design was inspired by the idea that beauty should be enjoyed by all regardless of their social rank or status. The park now serves as an oasis for the citizens, where a lot of azaleas and maple trees are planted along the lakeside. In spring the contrast between cherry trees in full bloom and the Nasu mountain range with lingering snow in the far distance is wonderful. You can stroll around the lake, admiring the seasonal natural beauty. Do not forget to have “Nanko Dango,” or sweet dumplings at teahouses located by the lake.
【Directions: Approx. 15 min by car from Shirakawa IC, Tohoku Expressway】

3月 | March

チンチン電車1116号 【伊達市保原町】

March Edition
Streetcar Number 1116, Hobara-machi Date City
Streetcars are called “Chin-chin Densha” in Japanese, meaning tinkling streetcars. When in operation, they connected among Fukushima City and surrounding towns of former Date County. It is regrettable that all these streetcar lines were abolished in April,1971. The Number 1116 train had been preserved in former Hobara Town, however, due to constant wind and rain, the condition of its body became horribly wretched. After the Great Disaster in March,2011, people in Date City began a project to revitalize the streetcar. In April,2015, they finally restored the car as it used to be. You can see this streetcar, which looks as if it were about to start moving, displayed at the square of Hobara Central Community Center in Date City.
【Directions: Approx. 7 min on foot from Oizumi Station, Abukuma Kyuko Line】

2月 | February

なかやま雪月花(せつげっか) 【下郷町】

February Edition
Nakayama Setsu-Gekka (Snow, Moon and Fire) Festival, Shimogo Town
At Nakayama Hana-no-Sato Park in Shimogo Town, located in the deep Aizu, southwestern area of Fukushima Prefecture, Nakayama Setsu-Gekka (Snow, Moon and Fire) Festival is held on the third Saturday of February. Thousands of candle flames on the snowfield and moonlight create a magical atmosphere. The festival was originated by the local young who were eager to revitalize their hometown, and was designated as a Japan Night View Heritage site, drawing many visitors from abroad as well. This year’s lighting ceremony begins at 16:30 on February 18.? Anyone can join the ceremony.? Let’s rush to Shimogo Town.? Don’t forget to bring a lighter!
【Directions: Approx. 15 min by car from Aizu-Shimogo Station, Aizu Railway Line】

1月 | January

波立(はったち)海岸 【いわき市】

January Edition
Hattachi Seashore, Iwaki City
In January, Hattachi Seashore, located in the northern part of Iwaki City, is crowded with many people who pray for the first sunrise of the year. A red torii, or a Shinto gateway, standing on Benten Island, serves as a symbol of the seashore, and has been worshipped among the local people. This torii survived the giant tsunami triggered by the Great East Japan Earthquake in 2011. However, it was destroyed in a typhoon in October, 2015. Subsequently, it was reconstructed in June, 2016 by local volunteers, being relocated at a place nearer to the shore than its original location. The tori gate was again damaged in another typhoon, but shortly afterwards, it was restored. Since it has endured several severe disasters, people now find a home in this tori as their guardian god of the sea.
【Directions: Approx. 15 min by car from Yotsukura IC, Joban Expressway】

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