Gunma Flower Park

Gunma Insect World

Gunma’s Top Hydrangea Spots

Gunma Safari Park

Gunma Safari Park Gunma Safari Park Gunma Safari Park Gunma Safari Park Country roads, busy intersections, shopping centers; everywhere bright, zebra-striped posters burn into your retinas and for those who don’t read Japanese, pose the big question: “what on Earth…?” For once, these eye catching signs don’t signal the nearest Pachinko parlor, but instead Gunma’s […]

A Wild Ride at Gunma Safari Park

As close as I ever want to get with a rhino Buffalo Lazy lions Close up with a camel A tortoise The retro attractions Tour buses with flaps in the side to poke meat out to the lions Feed a white tiger Lions enjoying the autumn sun A lioness asleep on the perspex over the […]

Hodaigi Ski Resort

Looking at Hodaigi Ski resort from across the valley View from the top lift Stretching is important when doing anything active Looking over towards Tanigawadake Be careful Down in the park Having a good time on the way up Blue skies makes for a spectacular day Just down the road from my house and about […]

Hotakasan Above the Clouds

Meandering through the forest (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) Looking out towards Tanigawadake (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) Chain climbing (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) Looking down the ridgeline (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) Above the clouds (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) Resting at the top (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) Deep in the mountains (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) Flanked on all sides by ski resorts, Hotakasan rises […]

Ikaho Green Bokujo

Ikaho Green Farm The bacon steak lunch Fragrant cows Autumn produce The barn Rabbit Walking! A fool and his money…. A Halloween sheep A normal sheep Goats in their trough Expectant beasts Archery range The entrance Ikaho Green Bokujo offers the chance to check out the sights, sounds and especially the smells of a working […]

Ikaho Green Farm

Entrance Ikaho Green Farm A normal sheep Rabbit Walking! A fool and his money…. The bacon steak lunch Fragrant cows Autumn produce The barn A Halloween sheep Goats in their trough Expectant beasts Archery range Ikaho Green Bokujo offers the chance to check out the sights, sounds and especially the smells of a working farm. […]

Joshuyuno Lake

Joshuyuno Lake Joshuyuno Lake View from the dawn Joshuyuno Lake Cemetery near the lake Close-up – Cemetery near the lake On the way to the lake On my way to Kusatsu, I decided to take an alternative road which was slower and less touristy. On Google maps, I could spot a great blue lake on […]

Kakumanbuchi Marshland

View of Kakumanbuchi with Lake Onuma in the background Entrance to the trail Map of the trail around the lake A wooden walk-way extends along one side of the lake This is probably a great place to observe wildlife a place to sit and eat lunch, or just admire the scenery Following the walk-way Reflections […]

Karuizawa Kingdom of Toys

Cycle in the air and take in the colorful view Kingdom of Toys is a giant playground See the hotel and Mt Asama from Kingdom of Toy’s iconic Ferris Wheel Witness the Power Rangers saving the day Enter the forest playground Conquer the forest obstacle course Cycle in the air and take in the colorful […]

Koizumi Cosmos Festival

Venue: Koizumi Cosmos Fields, Gunma When: Oct 15th – Oct 31st 2021 Each year from around mid to late October, Gunma's Koizumi Cosmos Fields bloom with millions of colorful flowers in a space of almost 11 hectares. Part of the appeal of this event is that the beautiful cosmos flowers sit right by a large […]

Kusatsu Nettaikan

Hanging out on the branches More than two meters of golden python Hello Mr Capybara! Hello Mr Marmoset! (I think) The ceiling of the dome Doctor Fish will nibble your hands clean Not fluttering by any more A big ol' turtle plods past the flamingoes The path down to the dome Kusatsu may be best […]

Kusatsu Onsen Getaway

Just four hours from the big city of Tokyo is the small getaway town Kusatsu; located in the middle of nature and away from all the skyscrapers and clamor of the city. There are two main ways to get there: by train or by JR bus. We chose to go by bus due to the […]

Lake Haruna Illumination Festa

Mid – Late Dec Lake water in winter. Gunma Prefecture. Venue: Lake Haruna When: Mid – Late Dec 2021 Mount Haruna is one of Gunma's most famous mountains. On top of the mountain lies Lake Haruna. The lake is picturesque and draws tourists all year round. However, during the month of December, the annual illumination […]

Lake Shima in Nakanojo

Shima Lake Nakanojo Dam Looking down from Nakanojo Dam Near the village View on the dam A fisherman Lake Shima is located at 15 minutes by car or bus from Nakanojo Station and 8km from Shima Onsen. Shima Onsen is one of the most famous onsens in Gunma, and the oldest one. Situated near a […]

Mantaro-san

A quick sketch before conquering the ridge (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) Spring in full bloom (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) Looking down into Niigata (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) The well used trail (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) Spring Flowers (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) Last of the winter snows lingering on the slopes (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) The steep walls of the valley below […]

Minakami Adventure Festival

Bungy running at the main festival area Candle craft and hot air ballooning Fun for the kids at the festival area Bungy running at the main festival area (Photo: Minakami Adventure Festival) Minakami Adventure Festival started off 10 years ago as just a fun, late season weekend arranged by a few of the outdoor companies. […]

Minakami Canyoning Adventure

Going with the flow – starting to hear the roar of a BIG waterfall The 20 meter Fox Waterfall that gives the course its name Just a small drop this time… Going with the flow – starting to hear the roar of a BIG waterfall (Photo: Canyons) We headed up to Minakami to do a […]

Minakami Canyoning and Rafting

Ready to conquer Fox Canyon! Scaling the side of the canyon can be tricky. Taken prior to the 20-meter drop. I think our faces say it all. Here I am about to slide 20-meters into a watery abyss. Feeling victorious after completing the canyoning course, we took a picture with our guide, Lee. Preparing to […]

Minakami Town in Gunma

The Blue Moon Hill tree houses where you can spend the night (they really look comfortable) Here is where you take lessons at Blue Moon Hill Dole Land's main building The historical village of Takumi no Sato The Blue Moon Hill family and I (everyone was so nice to me!) Me trying to ride a […]

Minakami in Gunma

Takaragawa Onsen Snow-capped mountains of Gunma Minakami blue skies Takaragawa Onsen Takaragawa Onsen Takaragawa Onsen If you thought you'd have to travel to the furthest parts of Japan to find hidden hot springs, powder snow or Japanese cultural arts and crafts, think again. Whether you’re after relaxing moments or exhilarating fun (or both), you can […]

Minakami Kogen Ski Resort

Snow rafting is one of the most popular winter activities at the resort. Guests only need to walk outside the back of the hotel to take part in all the winter activities. Everything can be rented on-site. Reasonable packages are available. Ski slopes and, in the foreground, small hills for tubing/sledding beside one of the […]

Minakami River Rafting

In the thick of the action A group shot before you head out on the tour The safety briefing by the river In the thick of the action (Photo: Canyons) Minakami has gone through something of a revival of late. Back in the day it was a popular little hot spring resort a few hours […]

Mount Asama Magma Stone Park

Temple and Mount Asama in the background Shrine Small tree on magma rock Mount Asama View of the valley Entrance Futuristic, massive and lunar in landscape, these were my first impressions of Mount Asama, one of Japan’s most active volcanoes that has fascinated scientists from Japan and abroad for centuries. Its two largest eruptions in […]

Mount Haruna, Gunma

A simply incredible driving atmosphere   Entering the foothills of Mount Haruna It's a long way to the top if you want to rock & roll (or deliver tofu) The view from a viewing platform of Ikaho and Shibukawa The red iron bridges of Gunma The road less travelled A simply incredible driving atmosphere After […]

Mount Haruna

Haruna mountain Map Haruna lake Summer cabin Behind Haruna mountain Going to the top Situated 30 minutes by car from Shibukawa, Mount Haruna is one of the famous mountains in the Gunma prefecture. Mount Haruna is a place I like to go often. As I live not far away from there, I can definitely say […]

Mount Iwabitsu

View of Agatsuma Valley The rocky cliffs of Mount Iwabitsu Map of the site. Iwabitsu village Iwabitsu village On the way to the Senryuin Site Senryuin Site Iwabitsu village Mount Iwabitsu rising in the background Mount Iwabitsu is a famous landmark in the Gunma prefecture with 200 meter high rocky cliffs. A well known trekking […]

Mt Shirane Ropeway

Flying over Autumn foliage The entrance to the ropeway at the foot of the mountain Purchase your tickets here Lifting off from the ropeway’s station below The immense journey ahead Hurdle over rocky cliffs Flying over Autumn foliage Notice As of January 23, 2018, the summit of the volcano has been off-limits to the public. […]

Nakanojo Garden

Greenhouse In the middle of the park Greenhouse Souvenirs shop Small restaurant Entrance to Nakanjo Nakanojo Gardens is a celebration of nature in all its forms. The Japanese have a spiritual affinity with nature, whether through Shinto, or in its appreciation of the four seasons. While in the past Japanese gardens were more formal, Nakanjo […]

Nakazawa Village

Nakazawa Village overlooking the mountains Have a splash at the Therma Therma pool Experience Kusatsu’s blue waters at the open air baths Experience Kusatsu’s blue waters at the open air baths You will have the choice to stay at a Western room with a homely atmosphere Have a luxurious stay at their Japanese style rooms […]

Nishi Kuro Canyoning

Checking the next anchor (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) Euphoria (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) Orange blurrs (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) The big falls (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) Pay your respect before you go (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) Nishi Kuro Falls (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) Job well done (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) Mid summer is a miserable time to go hiking in Japan. The […]

On top of Omine-san

Looking down into Saragakyo (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) Deep in the cedars (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) Ridge-line trail amoungst the native birch trees (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) Just a few stairs (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) Looking over towards Numata (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) At the summit (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) Emerging from the forest (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) What this short section […]

Oni-oshi-dashi, Nagano/Gunma

Welcome to Onioshidashi Some cute mascot Demons. Kawaiiii! The view away from the park Bountiful trees and shrubs make the park seem like a giant rockery A path around the rocks The flowers attract bright butterflies Japan abounds with natural attractions, be they snow-capped mountains, lushly forested hills, or sparkling lakes and waterfalls. However, even […]

Autumn Colors in Ozegahara

Wooden path all the way to the mountain Camping area at Yama no Hana The yellowish grass at Ozegahara Marshland Resting yourself and having a chit-chat with friends Blue sky reflected in the small pond The colorful mountains Best spot to ponder at Sakasahiuchi(逆さ燧) Blue sky, colorful mountains, brownish grass, perfect combination! The best visit […]

Pinon Inn

Rest by the fireplace Step into Pinon Inn Have a drink by their bar Great place to have a meal Eat with a scenic view Choose the window seat Rest by the fireplace After staying in traditional Ryokans, hostels and hotel rooms, I was a little surprised when I came in Pinon Inn. When I […]

Rafting in Minakami in February

This is going to be awsome (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) You guys have fun (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) Quick safety briefing (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) Got to stay moving to stay warm (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) Our fearless guide (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) The calm before the storm (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) Go!!!! (Photo: Matthew Shewchuk) Late February in Minakami usually […]

Rocky Hike up Mt. Shibutsu

The view from the top of Mount Shibutsu in Oze National Park in Gunma Prefecture. The hike is rocky on the way up and the way down, but gets less rocky toward the bottom half. Hikers make a descent after a rest on top of Mt. Shibutsu. The goal: Mt. Shibutsu (至仏山) in late July. […]

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