When you think of the extreme sport of mountain climbing or the brilliant past time of hiking and mountain hiking your brain tends to wander over to thoughts about the Himalayas with Mount Everest or even the United States of America and Canada’s rocky mountains. But, there is a place in the world that has some of the most breathtaking mountains and lots of them – Japan. There are a variety of mountains in Japan and they all vary from steepness to height. So whether you are a keen mountain climber or an avid hiker there will be the perfect mountain or mountains for you in this list of Japans finest.
We are of course going to get the most iconic mountain out of the way first because this is one that everyone will be aware of. Mount Fuji is one of the most famous mountains in the world and probably takes the second spot on that list just behind mount Everest. It is a massive mountain that stands at a whopping 3,776.24 M (12,389 Ft) tall. It is located on Honshu island which is around 60 miles south west of Tokyo so for any mountaineers travelling to Japan it is really well located for you. This goes without saying that its climbing routes are for the most experienced climbers and is definitely not to be taken lightly. Many people climb to this peak every year often in groups and expeditions. There is of course a way to enjoy this mountain without climbing by going for a short hike at the mountains base. Doing this will really put into perspective the sheer size of this mountain.
Address:Fujinomiya, Susono,Fuji,Gotenba,Oyamacho in Shizuoka/Fujiyoshida,Narusawamura in Yamanashi
Mount Kita is next up on our list and is a beautiful mountain for climbers and hikers alike. There is a beautiful green foliage that surrounds this mountain that makes for a breathtaking site when atop of its peak. At its highest point the mountain is 3,193 M (10,476 FT) tall. This is substantially smaller that Mount Fuji and is definitely more suitable to climbers who are more of the novice skill set. This mountain offers up some great camping spots as you can see from the images below and is perfect in the summertime for a long hike and camp out with a group of fellow hikers.
Address:Minamiarupusu-city in Yamanashi
Mount Chokai is another one that is climbable using minimal equipment which lends itself nicely to almost anyone wishing to get into the hiking and climbing world. This mountain is surrounded by beautiful views that are enough to make the climb oh so worth it. It is smaller that the previous mountain as it stands at 2,236 M (7,336 Ft) tall. This mountain is sacred amongst a special section of the Shinto religion and is hugely popular with foreign hikers. You will almost certainly want to take your camera with you for a hike up this beautiful mountain.
Address:Yuza-machi, Sakata-city in Yamagata/Yurihonjo-city, Nikaho-city in Akita
Next up is Kyoto’s Mount Hiei. This mountain is one of the smallest of the Japanese mountains standing at just 848.1 M (2,782 Ft) tall. A Buddhist temple was founded on the top of this mountain and if you visit this mountain in spring and look down you may well be able to see the beauty of the Japanese Cherry Blossoms from above. This is the perfect mountain for newcomers to hiking as it offers amazing walks and eases you in to the thought of climbing larger obstacles. This is one of the most amazing sites to see the wonder of nature in the Autumn time. With surrounding woodland it is easy to get yourself back to nature and experience the best it has to offer and for those of you with low mobility you can climb aboard the cable car to take you a lot of the way up the mountain. When you are at the top of this mountain and look down you will be able to see the beautiful surrounding body of water down below.
Address:Sakyoku in Kyoto
Another one for the more experienced hikers and climbers. This one is very popular amongst professional climbers as a kind of practise before attempting the mighty Mount Fuji. Some people chose to climb this mountain instead of Mount Fuji because of the sheer danger of Mount Fuji. This one definitely is not for the novice climber and will almost certainly require months of training before even the worlds top mountaineers attempt to get to the top of this beautiful mountain. Hotakadake stands at a whopping 3,190 M (10,470 Ft) tall. Hotakadake is a mountain that is the highest peak of a range of mountains known as Hotaka. The Hotaka range consists of the peaks Okuhotaka, Karasawa, Kitahotaka, Maehotaka and Nishihotaka and it is definitely seen as a challenge for many climbers to tackle each peak in this beautiful range. The mountain range is now part of a national park in Japan known as Chūbu-Sangaku National Park and so is protected environmentally by the government. The special thing about this mountain range is that it has a variety of alpine huts scattered around that are for climbers to rest up or seek shelter in uncertain weather.
Address:Matsumoto-city in Nagano/Takayama-city in Gifu
Now, last but by no means least is Mount Asahi. Mount Asahi is part of the Ishikari Mountain range and is by far the smallest mountain on this list. The mountain stands at just 295.2 M (969 Ft) tall. The small size of the mountain makes it perfect for the family to go hiking. When getting children into hiking, starting off with smaller mountains such as this one is perfect. As well as offering a gentle hike the mountain is part of a park known as Mount Asahi Park and a zoo. This place is perfect for a family day out. This is a remarkable place and one that the whole family will enjoy and one of Japan’s leading electrical companies took its name directly from the mountain. Beautiful walks in the greenery and puffs of steam popping out from the mountains hot springs make for a truly relaxing hike along with the surrounding woodlands.
Address:Higashikawa-cho in Hokkaido
So, there you have it. Some of the best mountains in the whole of Japan for you to climb and hike away at until your heart is content. From the truly majestic Mount Fuji to the understated and beautiful Mount Asahi there is something for everyone no matter the level of climber you are and no matter the level of hiker you are. This will satisfy both thrill seeking professionals and curious beginners alike. Happy hiking or happy climbing.
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