This entry is part 10 of 12 in the series Discover Japan's Natural Beauty  1

Hello, I’m Mio! Today, I’m going to share detailed information about Kamikochi, one of Japan’s most beautiful natural spots.

Basic Information about Kamikochi

Kamikochi is a mountain resort in the Northern Japanese Alps, located in Matsumoto City, Nagano Prefecture. It sits at an elevation of about 1,500 meters (4,921 feet) and is known for its stunning natural beauty. Kamikochi is often referred to as “Japan’s Alps” because of its breathtaking scenery. It has been designated as a Special Natural Monument and Special Place of Scenic Beauty in Japan. You can enjoy its beauty throughout the four seasons.

Rich Nature and Highlights

Kamikochi is famous for its beautiful natural landscape and diverse ecosystem. Here are some of the main highlights:

Kappa Bridge

Kappa Bridge is the symbol of Kamikochi. It is a suspension bridge over the Azusa River. From the bridge, you can enjoy spectacular views of the Hotaka Mountain Range and Mount Yake. On clear days, the blue sky, clear river, and green mountains create a stunning contrast.

Taisho Pond

Taisho Pond was formed by the eruption of Mount Yake in 1915. The reflection of the surrounding mountains on the pond’s surface is breathtaking, especially in the early morning or late afternoon. A walk around the pond allows you to immerse yourself in the tranquility of nature.

Myojin Pond

Myojin Pond is a serene pond located a short walk from the center of Kamikochi. It lies at the foot of Mount Myojin and has a mystical atmosphere. The area around the pond includes a shrine and other sacred spots, blending nature and spirituality.


Tokusawa-en is a mountain hut and lodge located along one of Kamikochi’s hiking trails. It has a beautiful garden and seasonal flowers. Staying here or taking a break allows hikers to experience the traditional mountain hospitality and enjoy delicious meals.

Hiking Trails

Kamikochi offers a variety of hiking trails for both beginners and experienced hikers. Here are some popular routes:

  • Kappa Bridge to Taisho Pond: This is a flat and easy trail suitable for beginners. You can enjoy beautiful scenery and take your time exploring the area.
  • Kappa Bridge to Myojin Pond: This trail has moderate difficulty and offers a chance to enjoy Kamikochi’s natural beauty. The tranquility at Myojin Pond is perfect for refreshing your mind.
  • Kappa Bridge to Tokusawa-en: This trail is a bit longer and provides a good hike with beautiful views and rest spots along the way. Staying overnight at Tokusawa-en is highly recommended.


The best way to reach Kamikochi is by using public transportation. From Matsumoto Station, take a train to Shinshimashima Station, then transfer to a bus to Kamikochi Bus Terminal. To protect the environment, private cars are not allowed in Kamikochi, but the public transportation options are convenient and comfortable.


Kamikochi is a stunning natural destination with rich nature, beautiful scenery, and various hiking trails. It’s a place where both beginners and experienced hikers can enjoy the outdoors. Especially from spring to autumn, many people visit to experience its beauty. I, Mio, am captivated by Kamikochi’s charm, and I hope you get the chance to experience it too. Happy hiking!

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