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With a little over a month to go until Japan's newest national holiday, Yama no Hi (or "Mountain Day"), we'd like to share some vital information about expected traffic conditions around Kamikochi on the 10th and 11th of August.To begin with, Mountain Day is on actually on the 11th of August, but since it is the inaugural celebration, there will be various ceremonies held at multiple venues in both Kamikochi and Matsumoto (notably at the Performing Arts Center). Due to the large amount of excitement surrounding the event, we anticipate heavy traffic at these places around Kamikochi during the following time periods:

--Between Shinshimashima and the Hirayu toll gates on National Road 158 and from Nakanoyu to Kamikochi (private cars prohibited) from Wednesday, August 10th, 12:00 to 18:00; AND from Thursday, August 11th from 7:00 to 17:00

Please be aware of the possibility of congested roads during this time.

>> You can also read about Mountain Day on the official site by following this link: => Official site



Thanks to the snowy winter, now Kamikochi enjoys the rich melted-snow water that comes from Peaks of Hotakas. The water is about 15 centigrade in temperature throughout a year and in the stream, you can find some mountain trout and river alga swimming . With luck, you can even enjoy some fireflies at dusk with in the specific period of July. The temperature of Kamikochi in this season would be about 20 centigrade in average year and many people come here to get relief from the heat. Why don’t you come and join tem?  If you have any question, feel free to ask on our facebook page.(

>> More Info About Kamikochi => Information




Snow has begun to fall and collect in the mountains. The snow-covered peaks and ice-encrusted trees of this time give visitors a special chance to see Kamikochi's winter. Kamikochi is scheduled to close for winter on November 15th, so this your last chance to experience the charm and beauty of winter here.

If you have any question, feel free to ask on our facebook page.


>> More Info About Kamikochi => Information





Fresh green season has come to Kamikochi which is located 1,500 meters above sea level.      In the begining of May, it was covered deadwoods and even snow was still there, however, at last winter has almost gone and now you can see a fresh green leaves and new sprouts up around Kamikochi. As a remark of early summer, several kinds of flowers also start to bloom. Even though, Kamikochi is getting to be like an early summer, you should be better to bring your long-sleeved shirts to go there.If you have any question, feel free to ask on our facebook page.(

>> More Info About Kamikochi => Information



Written by: William Habington

March 7th, 2016

We are honored and delighted to announce that Kamikochi and downtown Matsumoto have been chosen to host a special inaugural ceremony for a new national holiday named "Yama no Hi" (山の日 or "Mountain Day").  The event will take place on Thursday, August 11th this year and is being touted as an opportunity for people to experience the mountains firsthand and enrich their knowledge of the history surrounding Japan's alpine culture.


Photo by Joseph Mecha


For more information on Mountain Day, you may consult the following link:  More details are sure to emerge as the event draws closer.

Written by: William Habington
Date: 2013/10/07


After weeks of talking about how autumn is gradually coming to Kamikochi and the peak period of colorful foliage is just around the corner, we're finally seeing some significant changes in color at higher elevations.  Eager to document these new developments for himself, staff writer William Habington joined a friend for a day hike to Mount Yake, a centerpiece of Kamikochi's landscape and one of the many famous peaks which are easily accessible from the park.  Being an active volcano, Yake seems to have a special charm for western visitors.


What they saw up top surpassed all expectations.  Under an intensely blue sky lay a rich pallette of red, yellow, and orange leaves that marked the arrival of "kouyou" season in Kamikochi.  We hope you enjoy this photo-packed report on their trip.



Read more: Mount Yake Ablaze with Color 

Written by: Tammy Crichton

Date: 2012/11/02

Our friend, long-term Nagano resident Tammy Crichton has graciously agreed to share this account of a September visit to the Karasawa Col along with some wonderful pictures. As we enjoy the precious final weeks of Kamikochi's autumn 2012 season, we look forward to hearing more about Tammy's adventures in the Northern Alps!





Read more: Three Days in the Hotaka Range

Written by: William Habington
Date: 2012/05/25

On Saturday May 19th, I had the pleasure of taking part in an event called the "Mizu Walk" along the Asuza River.

In addition to much needed exercise, it gave me occasion to think about the significance of rivers in general and the Azusa in particular. Like all rivers, the Asuza is an invigorating presence in the communities through which it flows and to which it gives a sense of connection. But it is also more than that. A survey of local history reveals both a deep religious significance and a connection to ancient culture as fascinating as it is mysterious.



Read more: Azusa: Nature and Culture Flow as One in the Sacred River 

Written by: Sodai Taira
Date: 2011/11/06


Although Kamikochi is one of the most famous tourist spots in Japan with visitors coming from all over the world, there are still relatively unknown things about Kamikochi.

   One of the most interesting and intriguing points of Kamikochi's history is the story of an aged man who was amazingly able to live alone in the untouched and harsh natural conditions of Kamikochi over 100 years ago. Making a living through fishing and hunting, this man built a hut alongside Myojin-ike Pond.

   Earning high praise from the English Missionary Walter Weston (the man who introduced the greatness of Kamikochi to the world), this legend's name is Kamijo Kamonji.


Read more: The Oldest Hut in Kamikōchi


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Matsumoto Travel Guide Portal "Shin-Matsumoto Monogatari"
Matsumoto official site
Kamikochi official site
Go!Nagano - Nagano official foreign language site
The Inaugural National Ceremony for Mountain Day official foreign language site