Explore a Ravine in a Land of Myth and Legend
Stroll through natural scenery forged by an ancient volcanic eruption
Takachiho in southern Kyushu is steeped in Japanese mythology, as the spot where the gods descended from heaven and created the Japanese archipelago.
Nestled in the heart of its deep forests is Takachiho Gorge, an awe-inspiring ravine encompassing the cobalt blue Gokase River that was born of a massive lava flow from Mount Aso about 90 to 120 millennia ago.
Trek down one of the many forest paths to view the chasm from above, or better still, rent a rowboat and admire it from below. If you’re lucky, the 17-meter high Manai Falls may even spray you, considered an auspicious sign. Finally, round off your trip with a look at Takachiho Shrine, stay for a kagura dance, or feast on local delicacies like Takachiho beef and Miyazaki-brewed shochu. Those looking to stay the night will find a host of ryokan options, with many offering hot springs and beautiful mountain views.
Access: Take the Shinkansen bullet train from Hakata Station to Kumamoto Station (about 1 hour). Then take the bus from Kumamoto Station to Miyako Bus Center (about 3 hours).
Oaza Mitai-oshioi, Takachiho-cho, Nishiusuki-gun, Miyazaki-ken
Approx. 30 minutes or more