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Regions of Japan

Hokkaido Tohoku Hokuriku
Shinetsu
Kanto Tokai Kansai Chugoku Shikoku Kyushu Okinawa Islands SAPPORO TOKYO NAGOYA OSAKA FUKUOKA FURANO KUSHIRO AOMORI SENDAI FUKUSHIMA NIKKO HAKONE SADO TAKAYAMA KANAZAWA ISE KYOTO NARA HIROSHIMA NAGASAKI KAGOSHIMA NAHA
Hokkaido
Hokkaido
  • Hokkaido
Japan's great white north offers wild, white winters and bountiful summers—a haven for dedicated foodies, nature lovers and outdoor adventure fans seeking an adrenaline rush Japan's great white north offers wild, white winters and bountiful summers—a haven for dedicated foodies, nature lovers and outdoor adventure fans seeking an adrenaline rush
Tohoku
Tohoku
  • Aomori
  • Akita
  • Iwate
  • Yamagata
  • Miyagi
  • Fukushima
Fearsome festivals, fresh powder snow and vast fruit orchards—the rugged territory of Tohoku offers a new perspective on travel in Japan Fearsome festivals, fresh powder snow and vast fruit orchards—the rugged territory of Tohoku offers a new perspective on travel in Japan
Hokuriku Shinetsu
Hokuriku Shinetsu
  • Niigata
  • Toyama
  • Ishikawa
  • Fukui
  • Nagano
An easily accessible slice of rural Japan offering unrivaled mountainscapes and coastlines, endless outdoor adventure and amazing ocean fare An easily accessible slice of rural Japan offering unrivaled mountainscapes and coastlines, endless outdoor adventure and amazing ocean fare
Kanto
Kanto
  • Tokyo
  • Kanagawa
  • Chiba
  • Saitama
  • Ibaraki
  • Tochigi
  • Gunma
Jump from the neon glow of Tokyo to Gunma's mountain retreats, Kamakura's cultural heritage and the Ogasawara Islands' exotic wildlife Jump from the neon glow of Tokyo to Gunma's mountain retreats, Kamakura's cultural heritage and the Ogasawara Islands' exotic wildlife
Tokai
Tokai
  • Yamanashi
  • Shizuoka
  • Gifu
  • Aichi
  • Mie
Hallmark attractions such as Mt. Fuji and Takayama coexist with major cities and famous heritage in the center of Japan Hallmark attractions such as Mt. Fuji and Takayama coexist with major cities and famous heritage in the center of Japan
Kansai
Kansai
  • Kyoto
  • Osaka
  • Shiga
  • Hyogo
  • Nara
  • Wakayama
The Kansai region is one of contrasts, from the glittering lights of Osaka and Kobe to the cultural treasures of Kyoto and Nara The Kansai region is one of contrasts, from the glittering lights of Osaka and Kobe to the cultural treasures of Kyoto and Nara
Chugoku
Chugoku
  • Tottori
  • Shimane
  • Okayama
  • Hiroshima
  • Yamaguchi
Welcome to Japan's less-explored western frontier, where the weather is warmer and the pace of life is slower Welcome to Japan's less-explored western frontier, where the weather is warmer and the pace of life is slower
Shikoku
Shikoku
  • Tokushima
  • Kagawa
  • Ehime
  • Kochi
Island-hopping, cycling, soul-warming spiritual strolling and red-hot dancing—the island of Shikoku gets you up and moving Island-hopping, cycling, soul-warming spiritual strolling and red-hot dancing—the island of Shikoku gets you up and moving
Kyushu
Kyushu
  • Fukuoka
  • Saga
  • Nagasaki
  • Oita
  • Kumamoto
  • Miyazaki
  • Kagoshima
The southern island of Kyushu is home to hot springs, rugged geography, undeveloped beaches and volcanoes ranging from sleepy to smoky The southern island of Kyushu is home to hot springs, rugged geography, undeveloped beaches and volcanoes ranging from sleepy to smoky
Okinawa
Okinawa
  • Okinawa
Fly to Okinawa and discover a distinct island culture born of subtropical sun, white sand, coral, mangrove jungles and the age of the Ryukyu Kings Fly to Okinawa and discover a distinct island culture born of subtropical sun, white sand, coral, mangrove jungles and the age of the Ryukyu Kings

GUNMA Minakami Come out to play in nature's big backyard

Come out to play in nature's big backyard

The mountainous Minakami area of northern Gunma is a natural playground that's perfect for adventure sports and activities like bungee jumping, canyoning, canoeing, or rafting. With the arrival of the great white winter, snow lovers can revel in a whole new array of activities. Minakami also has excellent onsen that offers a relaxing way to end a high-energy day.

Don't Miss

  • Adventure sports in every season, from canyoning to cycling
  • Soaking in Takaragawa—one of the world's top ten onsen
  • Making arts and crafts in the friendly village of Takumi-no-Sato

How to Get There

You can get to the Minakami area by shinkansen, regular trains, and buses.

From Tokyo, take the JR Joetsu Shinkansen to JR Jomo-Kogen Station, which takes 75 minutes. From there, transfer to the bus for Minakami Station (25 minutes). Local trains on the JR Takasaki Line run to Takasaki Station in two hours, after which you transfer to the JR Joetsu Line for JR Minakami Station and ride for an hour. Your Japan Rail Pass covers all JR legs.

Quick Facts

English-speaking guides are available for most tours and activities in Minakami

Minakami has over a half-dozen ski resorts, some just minutes from the local station

You can pick and eat fruit or make jam at Dole's fruit-themed amusement center—Dole Land

Soak through the seasons

Minakami is known for its crystal clear water and has one of the world's top ten onsens in Takaragawa Onsen. Located on the banks of a fast-flowing stream, this outdoor onsen allows you to enjoy surrounding seasonal changes from the comfort of its healing waters.

There are several other onsen spots in the area, including Minakami Onsen, whose waters are colorless and odorless. If you love a soothing hot bath without the heavy mineral aroma some baths produce, this is just the place for you.

Get your heart pumping

Minakami has a growing reputation for guided outdoor adventure including giant sliders, zip lines, rappelling, and jumps. You can slide down giant snow chutes using the natural contours of the mountains, or ski and snowboard at one of the area's several ski resorts. During the warmer months, you can enjoy whitewater rafting, bungee jumping, mountain biking, and hiking, all in the foothills of Mt. Tanigawa.

The unique character of Mt. Tanigawa

Mt. Tanigawa is the highest mountain in the Tanigawa mountain range. On the border of Gunma and Niigata prefectures, this peak also divides the Pacific side and Sea of Japan side, which makes rapid changes in weather common. Mt. Tanigawa is covered in snow for most of the year offering striking views from its summit.

See it all from the sky

The Tanigawa Ropeway carries you from the foot of Mt. Tanigawa to the base of the ski slopes at Tenjindaira. The 15-minute ride offers stunning views of the mountains on clear days.

Hands-on cultural experience

Try your hand at Japanese arts and crafts in the popular mountain village Takumi-no-Sato. Learn how to make items out of straw, bamboo, or clay using traditional methods passed down through the generations. You'll feel the passion and warmth of the locals as they teach you their crafts.

Heavenly scent in the highlands

Tambara Lavender Park is a flower lover's paradise. This highland slope has more than 50,000 lavender shrubs in full bloom from around mid-July to mid-August. Although the purple carpet of flowers is the main attraction, there is also a colorful array of other flowers such as sunflowers and hydrangeas to enjoy. In the winter months, this area is converted into a beginners' ski slope.

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