Nagatoro Fall Foliage Spots Saitama

Though spring’s cherry blossoms often steal the spotlight in Japan, the country’s autumn hues towards the end of the year are arguably just as beautiful as the pink flurries in April. Surprisingly, you don’t have to travel far outside the city to see breathtaking autumn views. In fact, you can find many stunning autumn landscapes in the Tokyo suburbs! That’s right, even though Saitama Prefecture neighbors Tokyo, there is plenty of beautiful Japanese nature to see. 

Saitama Fall Foliage Spot: Nagatoro (長瀞), Chichibu

Nagatoro Fall Foliage Spot Saitama

First Fall Colors: End of October

Fall Colors Peak: Mid-November to late-November

Recommended Spot: Iwadatami

Access: 5min walk from Nagatoro Station (Chichibu Railway)

Address: Nagatoro-machi, Chichibu-gun, 369-1300 Saitama

Ranking: ★★★★☆

Nagatoro is famous for its scenic cliffs that have been carved out by the Arakawa River. Many boat tours take visitors on a beautiful ride down the river to view the fascinating geography. In fact, Nagatoro is sometimes called the window to the earth because of the unique look at the earth’s crust peeking above the ground. The area is made more spectacular in autumn, as the fall foliage reaches its peak.

A flood of colors overwhelms visitors with natural beauty, as blue skies, autumn hues, grey cliffs, and clear water paint the scene. The best place to see this stunning landscape in Saitama is Nagatoro Iwadatami.

Saitama Fall Foliage Spot: Mount Hodo (宝登山), Chichibu

Chichibu Fall Foliage Spot in Saitama

First Fall Colors: Late-October

Color Fall Peak: Mid-November to late-November

Access: 15min walk from Nagatoro Station (Chichibu Railway) to the ropeway station

Address: Nagatoro-machi, Chichibu-gun, 369-1305 Saitama

Ranking: ★★★★☆

Mount Hodo rests on the north side of Chichibu Basin and reaches up to a height 497 meters above Chichibu. You can take a ropeway up to the top to get a panoramic view of the area. In autumn, the fall colors spill down from the top of the mountain and spread across Chichibu.

Hodosan Shrine mystifies with its serene beauty and spirituality. For great hiking and Japanese culture, it’s hard to top Mount Hodo in all its autumn glory. Also, Hodosan Small Animal Park is a favorite spot in the area.

Saitama Fall Foliage Spot: Nakatsu Gorge (中津峡), Chichibu

Nakatsu Ravine Fall Foliage Saitama Spot

First Fall Colors: Middle of October

Fall Colors Peak: End of October until the beginning of November

Access: 50min Seibu Kanko Bus ride from Mitsumineguchi Station (Chichibu Railway) until  Aiharabashi

Address: Nakatsugawa, Chichibu-shi, 369-1903 Saitama

Ranking: ★★★☆☆

Nakatsu Gorge attracts many visitors in autumn to its maple filled valley. As one of the main sightseeing spots in Okuchichibu, Nakatsu Gorge does not disappoint. Because of its unique geology that makes it hard to develop, the area is practically untouched. As a result, the scene is an example of the original natural scenery of Japan and an excellent spot for autumn leaves in Saitama.

The cool colors of the rough landscape blended with the warm hues of autumn leaves create a spectacular portrait of Japanese nature. Amazingly, Chichibu is not too far from the towering buildings of Tokyo, so it is possible to spend a day maple hunting here from the big city.

Saitama Fall Foliage Spot: Togo Park (東郷公園), Hanno

Togo Park

First Fall Colors: Beginning of November

Fall Colors Peak: Mid-November to late-November

Recommended Spots: Chichibu Ontake Shrine

Access: 20min walk from Agano Station (Seibu Chichibu Line)

Address: 580 Sakaishi, Hanno-shi, 357-0215 Saitama

Ranking: ★★★★☆

There are about 1,000 trees planted at Togo Park in Hanno, Saitama. In the fall, they turn crimson, bathing the park in warm light as the sun shines through the autumn leaves. The park is named after General Togo, or Heihachiro Togo. A statue of the leader stands in front of a leafy backdrop presenting their autumn colors in fall, and nearby is a Japanese garden. The history and natural beauty combined make Togo Park a delightful spot to view autumn leaves in Saitama.

In late November, the Autumn Maple Festival at Togo Park takes place. Visitors can enjoy a peaceful walk under the leaves away from the Tokyo crowds. During this time, there is also a jazz festival held and a “light-up” event that illuminates the leaves in the evening. Admission is just 100 yen.

Saitama Fall Foliage Spot: Lake Kamakita (鎌北湖) in Iruma, Moroyama

Lake Kamakita

First Fall Colors: November

Fall Colors Peak: Mid-November to late-November

Access: 60min walk from Moro Station (JR Hachiko Line); 70min walk from Higashi-Moro Station (Tobu – Ogose Line)

Address: Oyagi, Moroyama-machi, Iruma-gun, 350-0452 Saitama

In the fall, the mountains surrounding Lake Kamakita appear as waves of autumn colors pouring into the water from all around. Though just 2 kilometers in circumference, this small lake packs within it a powerful view, mirroring the red and gold painted hills in the still water.

After hiking around the beautiful scenery in Moroyama, Saitama, you can take a boat out onto the lake to truly immerse yourself in autumn hues.

Saitama Fall Foliage Spot: Torii Kannon (鳥居観音), Hanno

First Autumn Colors: Late-October

Autumn Colors Peak:  Early-November to mid-November

Access: 40min bus ride from Hanno Station (Seibu Ikebukuro Line) until Renkeibashi (5min walk)

Address: 3198 Kaminaguri, Hanno-shi, 357-0111 Saitama
Ranking: ★★★★☆

Among the vivid autumn leaves at Torii Kannon is a Buddhist temple and Shinto shrine. Overlooking the colored landscape are three large religious statues and beautiful temple buildings. With stunning colors woven throughout the mountain, Torii Kannon is one of the top tourist attractions in Saitama, Japan in autumn.

Saitama Fall Foliage Spot: Mount Tenran (天覧山), Hanno

First Autumn Colors: Mid-November

Autumn Color Peak: Late-November

Recommended Spots: Juroku Rakan Mountaintop 

Access: 40min walk from Hanno Station (Seibu Ikebukuro Line) ; 45min walk from Higashi-Hanno Station (JR Hachiko Line)

Address: Hanno, Hanno-shi, 357-0063 Saitama

Ranking: ★★★☆☆

On a clear day, it is possible to see Mount Fuji from the top of Mount Tenran in Hanno, Japan. Amazingly, despite being surrounded by lush nature, even TOKYO SKY TREE is visible. More notable, however, are the trees around Mount Tenran as they transform into the autumn form.

Mount Tenran is an easy hike that the family can enjoy. In addition, the fall foliage is spectacular, making Mount Tenran a great day trip from Tokyo. The abundant nature in the area is another example of Hanno’s amazing scenery.