Map of the Naruko and Hiraizumi area

Map of the Naruko and Hiraizumi area

Trip Details

dayDay 1: The Naruko area

Tokyo Station

PASS – Shinkansen

Tohoku Shinkansen – approximately 1 hour, 40 minutes

Tohoku Shinkansen

Series E5

  • Hayabusa: Tokyo – Shin-Aomori
  • Hayate: Tokyo – Morioka/Shin-Aomori
  • Yamabiko: Tokyo – Sendai

Series E2

  • Hayate: Tokyo – Morioka/Shin-Aomori
  • Yamabiko: Tokyo – Sendai/Morioka

Series E5
Series E5

Series E2
Series E2

Sendai Station

PASS – Trunk Lines

Resort Minori – approximately 1 hour, 25 minutes

Resort Minori

While gazing out at the scenery from a window-side seat on the Resort Minori, take a trip around Naruko Hot Springs, which boasts one of the largest number of hot springs in Japan, including places made famous by their affiliation with Matsuo Basho and Date Masamune.

Resort Minori
Resort Minori

Naruko-Onsen
Station

On foot or Taxi

On foot or by taxi

Naruko Sightseeing and Ryokan Information Center – located in JR Naruko-Onsen Station (Information in foreign languages)

Sightseeing brochures and other information are available in English, traditional Chinese and Korean.

Hours of operation

  • 8:30 to 18:00
NatureHistory&Traditions

1Walk the Narrow Road to the Interior immortalized in Basho's poetry

Running in the interior from Shitomae no Seki to Sakaida in Yamagata Prefecture is a narrow path approximately 5.2 kilometers in length. Memorialized in the poetry of the famous poet Basho, the path is maintained through a natural forest for visitors to walk along.

[Getting there]

  • It is approximately 5 minutes by taxi from Naruko-Onsen Station along the Oku no Hosomichi to Dewa Kaido Nakayamagoe.

The Narrow Road to the Interior (Oku no Hosomichi)
The Narrow Road to the Interior (Oku no Hosomichi)

History&Traditions

2Kokeshi doll production tour and painting experience

The kokeshi dolls of Naruko are well-known throughout Japan, and in Naruko Hot Spring Village, tours are available to watch the kokeshi being created and visitors can also paint dolls themselves.

[Getting there]

  • It is approximately 5 minutes by taxi from Naruko-Onsen Station to the Japanese Kokeshi Museum.

A visitor paints a kokeshi doll
A visitor paints a kokeshi doll

Hot springs

3Takinoyu, the oldest hot spring at Naruko

Naruko is one of the hot springs in Naruko-onsen-kyo Hot Spring Village, renowned for its Tohoku spas. And for more than a thousand years, Takinoyu has delivered divine hot water to Naruko Onsen Shrine. The cloudy water and tub made with wooden planks creates a nostalgic atmosphere.

[Getting there]

  • It is approximately 5 minutes on foot from Naruko-Onsen Station to Takinoyu.

Takinoyu hot spring
Takinoyu hot spring

Lodging:
The Naruko Hot
Spring area


dayDay 2: The Hiraizumi area

Lodging:
The Naruko Hot
Spring area

Naruko-Onsen
Station

PASS – Trunk Lines

Train – approximately 50 minutes (Rikuu East Line)

Furukawa Station

PASS – Shinkansen

Tohoku Shinkansen – approximately 20 minutes

Ichinoseki Station

PASS – Trunk Lines

Train – approximately 10 minutes (Tohoku Main Line)

Hiraizumi Station

On foot

On foot

History&Traditions

4Chuson-ji Temple, cultural heritage at Hiraizumi

Registered on the list of World Heritage Sites in 2011 as part of the cultural heritage of Hiraizumi, Chuson-ji Temple was founded in 850 by Ennin, a high-ranking priest of Enryaku-ji Temple on Mount Hiei who is often called Jikaku Daishi. At the beginning of the twelfth century, Fujiwara no Kiyohira, the first Northern Fujiwara lord, began a large-scale project to erect temples and other buildings on the temple grounds.

It is a treasure trove of art from the Heian Era, including more than 3,000 National Treasures and Important Cultural Properties of Japan, such as Konjikido Golden Hall.

[Getting there]

  • It is approximately 25 minutes on foot from Hiraizumi Station to Chuson-ji Temple.

Chuson-ji Temple
Chuson-ji Temple

History&Traditions

5Motsu-ji Temple

Motsu-ji Temple was founded by Ennin (also known as Jikaku Daishi) in 850. In the late Heian Period, Fujiwara no Motohira and Fujiwara no Hidehira, the second and third Northern Fujiwara lords, constructed magnificent temples, including Kondo Enryu-ji and Kasho-ji. With forty temples and quarters for 500 monks, the size inspired its nickname of Muni no Reichi, or the Unrivaled Sacred Grounds.

Today, the Pure Land garden with its central feature of Oizumi ga Ike, and structural remnants of the Heian Period temples remain preserved in excellent condition, and have been designated both as Special Historical Sites and Special Places of Scenic Beauty by the Japanese government.

[Getting there]

  • It is approximately 10 minutes on foot from Hiraizumi Station to Motsu-ji Temple.

Motsu-ji Temple
Motsu-ji Temple


Hiraizumi Station

Bus

Hiraizumi Geibikei bus line – approximately 35 minutes

Get off the bus

Geibikei Gorge

Bus

Hiraizumi Geibikei bus line – approximately 35 minutes

Nature

6Geibikei, a gorge of stupendous beauty

Extending approximately two kilometers in length, Geibikei Gorge was formed by erosion of the limestone banks by the Satetsu River, a tributary of the Kitakami River. The sheer cliffs soar to 100 meters, a natural work of work that is overwhelming to view.

[Getting there]

  • It is approximately 35 minutes from Hiraizumi Station on the Hiraizumi Geibikei bus line, or right next to Geibikei Station on the Ofunato Line.

Geibikei Gorge
Geibikei Gorge

Get off the bus

Hiraizumi Station

PASS – Trunk Lines

Train – approximately 10 minutes (Tohoku Main Line)

Ichinoseki Station

Bus

Bus – approximately 20 minutes

Get off the bus

Genbikei Gorge

Bus

Bus – approximately 20 minutes

Nature

7Genbikei Gorge – powerful, beautiful scenery

Genbikei Gorge was formed as a result of erosion by the Iwai River. The gorge spans approximately two kilometers of beautiful scenery that includes powerful and amazing rock formations. Genbikei Gorge is designated as a Place of Scenic Beauty and a Natural Monument by the Japanese government.

[Getting there]

  • It is approximately 20 minutes by bus from Ichinoseki Station.

Genbikei Gorge
Genbikei Gorge

Get off the bus

Ichinoseki Station

PASS – Shinkansen

Tohoku Shinkansen – approximately 2 hour, 40 minutes

Tokyo Station

As of June 2014.
Prices, business hours, transportation and other details are subject to change.


Shinkansen

Shinkansen

Trunk lines

Trunk lines

Bus

Bus

Taxi

Taxi

On foot

On foot

The JR EAST PASS SPECIAL can be used

The JR EAST PASS can be used

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Timetables and seat reservations

Shinkansen and Limited Express Timetables (Opens in a new window.)

JR-EAST Train Reservation
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