Hiking, Tochigi

Visiting Kegon Falls and Lake Chuzenji in Tochigi

As a region of mountains and summer resorts, there are many places to visit in Nikko National Park. These are our favorite places to visit in Nikko.

Irohazaka Winding Road

Irohazaka winding road was said to have 48 curves to Kegon Fall and was called Iroha-zaka, Iroha slopes after Japanese Iroha which is a Japanese copybook to learn Japanese with 48 letters. This road with 48 curves is one of the hardest roads to drive. My recommendation is to take a public bus from the Nikko Toshogu area. During the high season from early spring to late autumn, this road is fully packed with cars, so make sure to give yourself ample time to visit.

Kegon Falls

The beauty of arriving at Kegon Falls through Irohazaka winding road is that you get to see the mountains. The height of Kegon waterfall is about 97 meters; the water of Kegon Falls flows from Lake Chuzenji. The lookout is where you’ll get an epic view from below but try the extra effort to reach the wall basin by going down with the lift.

Lake Chuzenji

The small town near Lake Chuzenji tour boat terminal is considered one of the most beautiful lakeside towns in Japan due to its picturesque charm and dramatic mountain backdrop. From Kegon Falls, a 15-minute-walk leads you to Lake Chuzenji tour boat terminal. It takes one hour by round-trip to see beautiful spots from the tour boat. You can enjoy the view of the main mountains of Nikko.

Italian Embassy Villa Memorial Park

You can get off on the way for one round at Embassy Villa Memorial Park terminal with a round trip ticket. Lake Chuzenji has developed as an international summer resort and foreign villas were constructed from 1890 to 1930. The Italian Embassy villa was built in 1928. Designed by Antonin Raymond and used as a holiday home till 1997 by the ambassador, it was reconstructed to open to the public.

British embassy villa memorial park

The British embassy villa was built in 1896 as the private villa of Ernest Satow who played a significant role in the Meiji Restoration. Isabella Bird, a British explorer, had stayed at this villa in 1878. This house was used until 2008 and was then opened to the public.There isn’t much to do here in the British embassy villa memorial park, which is entirely the point. It is a place to unwind and relax.

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