2 days
Plan your visit carefully and allow plenty of time for your activities in the park. Always check the latest weather information, and avoid overexerting yourself if you feel unwell.


Hiking in Oze: The Birthplace of Japan's Nature Conservation Movement

Enjoy a guided nature hike through Ozegahara Marsh, Japan's most extensive mountain wetland. With beautiful mountain scenery, rare alpine flora, and level boardwalks, the course is ideal for beginners.

Itinerary Highlights

  • Observing rare, seasonal blooms on the wetlands.

  • Strolling along wooden boardwalks, surrounded by mountains.

  • Learning about the origins of Japan's conservation movement.

Trip Overview

Learn about the local environment and conservation
Walk through picturesque wetlands
Day 1

Learn about the local environment and conservation

The highland marshlands of Ozegahara are part of Oze National Park, and occupy a basin-shaped plateau that straddles the three prefectures of Fukushima, Gunma, and Niigata. Access is easy from Gunma Prefecture starting at Hatomachi Pass. Oze National Park has long been at the forefront of conservation in Japan, thanks to public-led efforts that stopped the construction of electric power generation plants that would have flooded much of the area. Other initiatives included blocking road development into the park and launching programs against littering and other potential damage from tourism.

Start your exploration at Oze Nature Center, which located at the entrance of Oze National Park and accessible by bus from Jomokogen Station in Gunma. Prepare for the next day's hike and learn about the history, nature, environment, and conservation activities of Oze, as well as seasonal information and exhibits of the flora and fauna. Depending on the day you visit, there may be craft experiences and activities available at the center. There are also hot spring baths onsite for day visitors.

After exploring the center, stroll to your accommodation for the evening in Oze Tokura Onsen, less than five minutes on foot from Oze Nature Center. There is a range of accommodations, most with onsite hot springs.

Day 2

Walk through picturesque wetlands

After breakfast at your accommodation, get an early start with a bus from Oze Tokura to Hatomachi Pass, to start your guided hike through Ozegahara. Explore the heart of this scenic highland marsh on an easy, family-friendly five-hour nature walk that takes you from Hatomachi Pass to Ushikubi Junction, with a stop at Oze Yamanohana Visitor Center.

Walk along boardwalks that protect the delicate plants in the wetlands, and take in the beautiful mountain scenery. Along the way, you can learn about the origins of Japan's nature conservation movement, through local conservation efforts including protecting flora and fauna, and revegetation of the marshlands. Your guide will explain the features, and the flora and fauna of the marshlands, which change through the seasons. From late May to early June, see snow-white Asian skunk cabbage, then tussock cottongrass between late June and early July. In autumn, the area takes on shades of gold and tangerine as the leaves change color.

Return by bus to Oze Tokura, then transfer to a bus to Jomokogen Station. Travel on to Tokyo on the Joetsu Shinkansen, or take the opportunity to further explore the area. Nikko National Park and Joshin'etsu Kogen National Park are not far away.

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