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Recommended routes

Take a road trip through Tohoku

What makes Tohoku attractive is its beautiful, glorious nature, to say the least. Look at the wonderful view created by a ragged shoreline. If you cross the ridge you will find a town and beyond that a mountain range right before your eyes. If you go by car, you are not limited by time constraints and can fully enjoy the scenes you’d like to see and the places you’d like to visit.
Take short break if someone asks you to drink green tea. If you interact with the simple and warm people of Tohoku, Tohoku isn’t merely a tourist destination – it becomes place you’d like to return.

Douse yourself with a streak of nature’s magnificence as you drive along Lake Towada-ko and coastal regions bordering the Pacific Ocean

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Aomori Prefecture

Aomori has a long coastline on both sides of the Sea of Japan and is the northernmost prefecture on Honshu. It is blessed with nature such as the Shirakami mountain range, the Oirase mountain stream, and Mt. Osore. The Aomori Nebuta Festival and the Hirosaki Neputa Festival are also well-known. One would like to run while gazing at the magnificent Mt. Iwaki.

Akita Prefecture

The nature of the four seasons is beautiful, and full of places to see: the Japan Firework Competition in Daisen City, the Kanto Festival in Akita City, and the namahage in Oga City. We would also love for you to enjoy the local foods so as kiritanpo, inaniwa udon, and hinai locally bred chicken.

Yamagata Prefecture

One cannot miss the cedar avenue pilgrimage route, a three star Michelin Green Guide destination; Mt. Haguro, home of the oldest five-storied pagoda in Tohoku; the caldera of Zao, the mountain temple that is known for Matsuo Basho’s haikus. Soba is also famous, but ramen is highly competitive here. The imonikai held in the fall is an event unique to Yamagata.

Iwate Prefecture

Iwate is the largest prefecture in Honshu, and there are many great spots including Hirazumi, a world heritage site; Ryusendo; Jodogahama; Koiwai Farm; Genbi Gorge; etc. One can have fun visiting places from literature such as Tono, the setting of “Legends of Tono” and Hanamaki, the hometown of Kenji Miyazawa; as well as enjoy the local performing arts.

Miyagi Prefecture

Enjoy a cruise around Matsushima, with more than 260 islands of all sizes in the bay. Next, visit the historical temples and shrines including Osaki Hachimangu, a national treasure and Zuigan-ji Temple. After that, relax in the hot springs of Akiu, Sakunami, Naruko, and Zao, which each have different water characteristics. We also recommend going to events like the Sendai Tanabata and the jazz festival.

Fukushima Prefecture

Fukushima is painted by boundless nature and history. Visit the history of Tsurugajo Castle in Aizuwakamatsu City and feel the atmosphere of Ouchi-juku’s past post-town with old thatched houses lining the streets. One must see the Sengoku picture scrolls and the Soma Nomaoi held every July in Minamisoma City. It’s also famous as the kingdom of fruit.

Tour spectacular National Parks at the northernmost tip of Honshu

This route tours around the Shimokita Peninsula at the northernmost tip of Honshu. The entire peninsula is a quasi-national park which is stunningly beautiful in autumn when the trees are a mass of colorful foliage.

Exhilarating drive from Chuson-ji Temple towards the coastal areas of Sanriku-kaigan

Enjoy an exhilarating drive to Chuson-ji Temple, a World Heritage Site famous for autumn foliage, the picturesque Sanriku Coast, and other places.

Go for a drive with picturesque sceneries of the Sea of Japan and Oga Peninsula as a backdrop

A route that tours through the Oga Peninsula, surrounded by sea on three sides. Each spot has unique and stunning views of the Sea of Japan.

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Selection of scenic spots

Tohoku Recommendations
Tohoku is an expansive region with long coastlines. It boasts beautiful nature, lively festivals, and delicious foods. The word “Tohoku” encompasses unique cultures and characteristics found in each area. Traveling by car is a great way to go where you want, when you want. Be sure to visit during the most captivating season.

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