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Young women wearing traditional Japanese Yukata at Daigo-ji temple with colorful red maple trees in autumn
30 May, 20194 minute read

Japan’s spellbinding autumn

Japan is a magnificent destination, renowned for hugely celebrating each separate season and the spring – tree blossoming season – often makes the news headlines. However, autumn – known as Koyo in Japan – is also a spectacular, colourful time to visit with the leaves of the enchanted maple and ginkgo trees gently turning red and yellow therefore altering the exquisite scenery to an enriching bright appearance. The exterior of this wonderful country begins its colourful makeover from mid-September erupting in the northern island of Hokkaido and spreading south to central and southern Japan until near the end of November.

Colourful autumn leaves lure an abundance of visitors to the country each year. The mesmerising plush blend of yellow, orange and red pleasantly change the country’s fascinating natural attractions including Matsumoto. A historic monument and national treasure famed for its fascinating structure, black exterior and unique positioning – having been built on a plain, surrounded by beautiful waters – in the autumn these rippling waters show a blazing reflection of the red leaves, which truly is a sight to see.

Japan boasts enchanted gardens all year round including the Kenroku-en Garden, Korakuen Garden and Kairakuen Garden. These exquisite landscapes are the perfect place to escape and especially in autumn, when the season’s charming magic, places nature under a searing red and yellow spell. Wandering these glorious gardens to admire the immaculate, beautiful power Japan’s autumn has which is without a doubt also highlighted when visiting the unique waterfalls, with the crisp flow of water being lit up by the outstanding array of colour, makes an unforgettable experience.

Mountains also make an excellent place to discover during this marvellous season, whether you are hiking or travelling by cable car the astonishingly-beautiful fall colours are bound to leave anyone breathless – Mount Takao is a particular show-stopper. The mountain’s peak is 599 metres above sea level and can be reached by cable car. At the top, scenic views of Tokyo, Mount Fuji and Yokohama’s radiant colours can be captured.

Tokyo, Japan’s cultural capital is renowned for attracting visitors with its delicious food, traditional culture and lively, ultramodern atmosphere. The bustling city might not first come to mind as a place to exude nature’s autumn wonders, however there are plenty of places in Tokyo to be mesmerised by the stunning fall colours. Situated in the middle of two bustling business areas, Icho Namiki Avenue boasts a glorious stretch of ginkgo trees, celebrated for a glowing wave of red and yellow in November and early Decemeber. Rikugien Gardens – famed for being one of Tokyo’s oldest parks having been built in the early 1700s, hosts several teahouses. The Fukiage Chaya teahouse is open to the public and as it is situated beside a tranquil pond it is the utmost perfect place to relax and enjoy some tea – surrounded by a bursting, bright autumn complexion. The park’s trees light up the area and reflect the glistening, sharp chroma in the waters; the Gardens really make for a mystic, unforgettable experience.

Japan is undeniably a wonderful country to visit for its incredible culture, historic monuments, outstanding display of natural beauty, mouthwatering local cuisine and the vibrant, kind atmosphere. Autumn only highlights these spectacular factors, with the gardens, waterfalls, mountains and monuments all being elevated to a mesmerising red and yellow exterior and along with the more gentle weather it really is a key time to discover the country’s charming perfections.

Image of blog author Nicola James

Nicola considers herself very lucky to have had the opportunity to visit a number of places around the world and these experiences usually involve searching for as many kinds of wildlife as possible. Recent highlights include penguins in Antarctica, bears and whales in Canada and Alaska and sea otters in California - but there are always more animals to search for.

Nicola | About the author

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