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Dewa Sanzan 出羽三山

Mt. Gassan Mt. Gassan
Mt. Gassan Mt. Gassan

Sacred mountains in Yamagata that represent birth, death, and rebirth

Find your inner peace on a pilgrimage across Yamagata's mystical, sacred Mountains of Dewa, collectively known as the Dewa Sanzan, some of Japan's most spiritually sacred peaks.

Quick Facts

Haguro's five-story pagoda is one of Japan's National Treasures

The three Dewa Sanzan mountains represent birth, death and rebirth

How to Get There

From Tsuruoka, ride the bus to Mt. Haguro, which takes approximately 60 minutes.

Pilgrimage of rebirth

The Dewa Sanzan mountains are some of the oldest locations for mountain worship in Japan.

Only Mt. Haguro is accessible throughout the year; Mt. Gassan is closed from early autumn to early summer due to heavy snowfall, while Mt. Yudono is closed from autumn to spring.

Haguro and walking through cedars

Climb the challenging 2,446 stone steps leading to the 414-meter-high summit of Mt. Haguro and wander through enchanting cedar forests dating back hundreds of years.

The unique shrine on the summit has an impressive two-meter-thick thatched roof capable of enduring the heavy snowfall of Yamagata Prefecture . The elegant lacquer-covered interior is a sight to behold.

Gassan and the marshlands

The highest of the three mountains at 1,984 meters, Mt. Gassan's shrine offers those willing to make the climb remarkable views across the Shonai plain and the Sea of Japan. Exploring the Midagahara marsh resting on the side of the mountain is also worthwhile.

Yudono, where no photos are allowed

Mt. Yudono is the most sacred and secretive of the three mountains. Yudono's protected shrine is revered, and visitors are prohibited from taking photos.

* The information on this page may be subject to change due to COVID-19.


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