On the southern side of Mt. Fuji in Shizuoka Prefecture lies Asagiri Kogen highland plateau, an area of lush natural beauty set against the stunning backdrop of Mt. Fuji. Pastures and dairy farms dot the landscape and water from melted snow feeds gleaming ponds. Well worth a visit for the scenery itself, Asagiri Kogen is also packed with exciting outdoor activities. Try tandem paragliding at Sky Asagiri, the largest paragliding practice area in Japan, where you can relax in the hands of a competent instructor as you soar among the clouds for sweeping views of the landscape and the ultimate view of Mt. Fuji.
Lush fields and captivating natural scenery
Wander among the green pastures and little ponds, and make sure to stop by Tanuki-ko, a quiet, mirror-like lake known as one of the best viewing spots for Mt. Fuji. There is a campground by the lake, and numerous hiking trails in the area, such as the Tokai Nature Trail. Another fantastic destination is Shiraito Falls, a cascade of water rushing over an expansive rock face into emerald pools. There are numerous other activities to enjoy in the area, such as seeing the animals at Fuji Safari Park or taking a traditional boat ride on the Kano river.
An unforgettable outdoor experience
While hiking Mt. Fuji makes many bucket lists, Asagiri Kogen offers a unique and iconic way to experience the famous mountain—from the air. Get strapped in for a paragliding adventure which sends you soaring above the plateau with Mt. Fuji rising from the plains before you. Located in the largest practice area in Japan, Sky Asagiri is the perfect place to enjoy paragliding, with unmatched scenic beauty, great facilities and skilled instructors enabling even first-time paragliders to relax and enjoy. Several courses are available depending on your experience level. For beginners, the tandem course, where an instructor rides behind you and controls the takeoff and landing, is fun and approachable. A free shuttle runs from Kawaguchiko station, which can be reached in a little under two hours by local train or bus from Tokyo. Alternatively, take a bus or cab from Shin-Fuji station, around an hour on the Tokaido Shinkansen from Tokyo.
Farm activities and fresh dairy
©Makaino Farm Resort
The Asagiri Plateau is one of the largest dairy producing regions in Japan, and a number of farms offer fantastic opportunities to sample their products and get a glimpse into farm life. The sprawling complex of Makaino Farms, located close to Lake Tanuki and Shiraito Falls, has a variety of fun activities for both adults and children, including feeding and milking cows, making butter, and day glamping—where you can enjoy a fantastic meal barbecuing local beef and relaxing in your own chic tent with Mt. Fuji views or roasting marshmallows over a campfire. It’s also packed with farm-fresh food and dairy such as soft serve, gelato and their popular cheesecake. Numerous photo spots with sweeping views of Mt. Fuji also make it well worth a stop.
Delicious local food and sake
Next to the Asagiri Kogen roadside station lies Asagiri Food Park, which includes five specialty food stores and a buffet restaurant using local ingredients. Enjoy Shizuoka green tea, known as some of the finest in the world and learn about the many delicious varieties of sweet potato at the Kakutani Sweet Potato Confectionary. Don’t miss tasting local sake from Fujimasa Shuzo, made with pure water from the snow-capped peaks of Mt. Fuji.