霧島MAP

Charms of KirishimaBlessings of nature, and the never-ending passage of time.

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Kirishima’s majestic mountain range was designated as Japan’s first national park. The bases of those mountains are blessed with dynamic hot springs.

Let’s look back at the Age of the Gods, when deities ruled the world. Looking down from heaven, they saw “an island floating in a foggy sea,” which is said to be where Kirishima (“fog island”) derives its name. On orders from Amaterasu-Omikami, nine deities descended down to earth and took their first steps on what is claimed to be Takachiho-No-Mine Peak. Kirishima has many shrines connected to mythology, such as Kirishima-Jingu Shrine with its enshrined god Ninigi-No-Mikoto (main character of the legend of Japan’s founding mentioned above), or Kagoshima-Jingu Shrine with its story of Umisachihiko and Yamasachihiko.

The famous peaks of the Kirishima mountain range (connected to colorful myths and legends) serve as an up-close reminder of volcanic forces. These peaks and the dynamic clear waters that flow between them transform with each of the four seasons, revealing a marvelous scenic beauty that is nothing short of moving.

As can be discerned from its entrance into the Japanese Geoparks Network in 2010, Kirishima was and still is in the in a central position in the interaction between man and nature. It has received an abundance of blessings from nature, including some of Japan’s most popular hot springs, Fukuyama kurozu black vinegar (prepared and matured in the traditional way), the aromatic and deep, deliciously-flavored Kirishima tea, and shochu liquor (made from sweet potatoes grown on the Shirasu-Daichi Plateau, whose constituent shirasu is a famous volcanic product).

Be sure to come and see Kirishima at least once, where you can feel the blessings of nature and the never-ending passage of time.

Kirishima’s Nature

Kirishima’s Four Distinct Seasons

Be soothed by the mysterious beauty of Kirishima’s breathtaking, majestic nature Kirishima was designated as Japan’s first national park in 1934. The dynamism of its beloved nature can be felt across the world. Kirishima is home to over twenty mountains, including its highest peak of Mount Karakuni-Dake (1700 meters) and the sacred Takachiho-No-Mine Peak known for its role in the Tenson Korin mythology (the descent of the deity Ninigi from heaven). Other scenery of interest includes Mount Shinmoe-Dake volcano (which erupted for the first time in approximately 300 years in January, 2011), and Sakurajima volcano and Kinko-Wan Bay further in the distance. Kirishima has four beautiful, distinct seasons (spring is marked by flowers, summer by rich greenery, fall by fiery falling leaves, and winter by rime ice on trees). The city contains a multitude of hot springs, sports and leisure, and other facilities.

  • Kirishima Geo Guide

    Kirishima Geo Guide

    Geo guides explain Kirishima’s majestic natural features—including its mountain range, crater lakes, waterfalls, rivers, and abundance of hot springs—from a geological perspective. The hikers will gain an understanding of Kirishima’s history of volcanic activity, and how this activity influenced each of the above-mentioned scenic features. Informative, entertaining geo guides share the charms of Kirishima, a land richly blessed by volcanoes.

  • Kirishima City Home Town Guide Club

    Kirishima City Home Town Guide Club

    Guides with extensive knowledge of Kirishima take hikers along courses that connect them with local nature. The guides make sure that hikers arrive at the destinations safely and on time, and along the way point out scenic photo opportunities and seasonal vegetation.

  • Comfort and Play in Kirishima

    Comfort and Play in Kirishima

    Forest Therapy Road: Draw energy from the heart of Kirishima’s majestic wilderness! A healing forest that soothes the soul The coexistence of man and nature. The people of Kirishima have protected and continue to protect their beloved nature, which has blessed them with an abundance of gifts and provides all who visit with boundless comfort. In these everlasting, calming woods reside a multitude of plants and animals, which carry joyous surprises and captivate man with their beauty. Admire the waterfalls, play in the trees, and experience all Kirishima’s nature has to offer!

  • Forest Therapy Guide Club

    Forest Therapy Guide Club

    The smell of trees, clean air, beautiful scenery.... Have you ever found tranquility walking through the forest? The Forest Therapy Guide Club offers three delightful courses recognized for their ability to reduce stress and refresh. Join a guide for a relaxed, scenic walk through the woods where you can put all five of your senses to use.

  • Kirishima Shicchoidon Guides

    Kirishima Shicchoidon Guides

    Shicchoidon means “well-informed” in the Kagoshima dialect. Under this service, knowledgeable local guides conduct in-depth, entertaining tours of Kirishima as divided into three courses—Kirishima-Jingu Shrine, Wake-Jinja Shrine/Inukai-No-Taki Falls, and Hinatayama. Participants will learn a great deal about Kirishima and the many historical figures, such as Takamori Saigo and Ryoma Sakamoto, who left their mark on the region between the closing years of the Tokugawa Shogunate and the Meiji Restoration.

  • Kyushu Olle: Kirishima Myoken Course

    Kyushu Olle: Kirishima Myoken Course

    Olle started in Korea’s Jeju-Do Island, and is a leisurely hiking activity where participants search for ribbons, horses, and other signs while taking in the scenic beauty of their surroundings. The Kirishima Myoken course follows the same route Ryoma Sakamoto and his wife Oryo travelled on their honeymoon (the first in Japan), showcasing the city’s abundance of nature and hot springs.

  • Cycling Paradise Kirishima

    Cycling Paradise Kirishima

    With routes looking out on the grand scenic beauty of a national park and the distant “island of fire” Sakurajima volcano, Kirishima really is a cycling paradise! Beautiful scenery and clear skies. Relish Kirishima from your head down to your toes!! Kirishima City has both ocean and mountains, and boasts designation as a national park. Plus, it has a total of nine suggested cycling courses. One course has you cutting through refreshing ocean air as you race up and down inclines, cycling against a backdrop of the blue waters of Kinko-Wan Bay and the majestic Sakurajima volcano. In the power spot course (power spots are said to emit spiritually and physically healing energy) you visit Kirishima-Jingu Shrine, a location rich in legend involving the Tenson Korin mythology (the descent of the deity Ninigi from heaven). Cycle rentals are available. A total of 11 support shops have been built across Kirishima. These shops lend bicycle pumps and tool kits to riders.

  • A stroll through Kirishima-Jingu Shrine in kimono attire

    A stroll through Kirishima-Jingu Shrine in kimono attire

    Clad in kimono, pass under the vermillion torii gate, proceeding gracefully down the stately, tree-lined approach to the shrine… If you’re going to stroll around Kirishima-Jingu Shrine, why not do it in a kimono? Fee: ¥3,000 (includes dressing fee; you may bring your own socks or purchase them for an additional ¥500) Reservations Required: 0995-57-1588 Optional round-trip taxi ride from the dressing location to the shrine: ¥1,000 (wait time at shrine is under 30 min) Souvenir Photo: ¥2,000 (includes tax and domestic shipping) We’ve also prepared something special that customers can receive on the same day.

  • Kirishima Kiki Tabi Audio Guide

    Kirishima Kiki Tabi Audio Guide

    When visiting Kirishima-Jingu Shrine, strolling around its surroundings, or walking along the Kirishima Shinsui-Kyo Gorge, be sure to use our “Kirishima Kiki Tabi” audio tour guide. The service uses a GPS device to deliver announcements as you approach points of interest, and is available in Japanese, English, Korean, and Chinese (simplified or traditional). Rental Fee: ¥1,000 (includes ¥500 deposit refundable at time of return) Rental Hours: 9 a.m.–4 p.m.  Reception Hours: 9 a.m.–3 p.m.

  • Kyushu Azalea

    Kyushu Azalea

    Official flower of Kirishima City and dear to the hearts of its residents, the Kyushu Azalea is a member of the heather family. It is unique from other azaleas in that its leaves are smaller. In Kirishima it blooms from May through around June, dying magenta the surfaces of mountains and other areas where it clusters. The clusters of azalea found on the slope of Ohachi, a parasite volcano of Takachiho-No-Mine Peak, are appear even more beautiful in their contrast with the blue of the sky.

  • Makino Crab Apple

    Makino Crab Apple

    Only native to the Ebino-Kogen Plateau, this tree grows between three and ten feet tall and is grouped together with apple trees. While its flowers are completely white at full bloom, they begin as deep pink buds and gradually fade as they bloom, fascinating many with its coloration. The pride of Kirishima, in 1923 these famous flowers were designated a National Natural Monument.

Kirishima’s Hot Springs

Kirishima has a multitude of hot springs areas of a variety of sizes. It even has four “hot springs villages” (areas with a high concentration of hot springs): Kirishima-Jingu, Kirishima, Myoken/Anraku, and Hinatayama. At Kirishima’s continuously-flowing natural hot springs, visitors can even enjoy such features as foot baths and drinkable springs! What’s more, there are many different kinds of hot springs establishments, including large hotels, elegant traditional inns, and casual family lodgings where visitors can enjoy not only bathing but also cooking their own meals with the water.

  • Kirishima-Jingu Hot Springs Village

    Kirishima-Jingu Hot Springs Village

    When you think Kirishima, the first thing that comes to mind are hot springs. The quality of its waters is praised even among hot springs enthusiasts. The Kirishima-Jingu Hot Springs Village, centered around Kirishima-Jingu Hot Springs, is found deep in the heart of Mount Kirishima-Yama. The source of this long-established hot springs village flows from Yu-No-No Hot Springs, located at 800 meters above sea level (Tokyo Peil). Its special “Nyuto Kirifuda” ticket, which allows entrance to any three bathing facilities, is very popular among visitors.

  • Kirishima Hot Springs Village

    Kirishima Hot Springs Village

    Majestic hot springs flow eternal from this solemn intermountain area of Kirishima. Enjoy the unique properties of the water while immersed in grand scenic beauty, admiring the beautiful contrast of pure white steam rising against a backdrop of green.

  • Myoken/Anraku Hot Springs Village

    Myoken/Anraku Hot Springs Village

    Visitors can enjoy the gurgling of Amori-Gawa River while surrounded in the deep greens of open-air hot springs. These springs are rich in hydrogen carbonate and are effective against nerve pain, muscle pain, dermatologic diseases, chronic sensations of cold in certain areas of the body, and other afflictions. They are also known for being potable.

  • Hinatayama Hot Springs Village

    Hinatayama Hot Springs Village

    Frequented by such famous figures as Takamori Saigo, this inland hot springs village has flourished from long, long ago. Present-day Hinatayama Hot Springs Village includes over twenty traditional inns, public baths, and family baths, and spans both sides of the clear waters of Amori-Gawa River.

Food/Souvenirs

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Fukuyama Kurozu Black Vinegar

Fukuyama kurozu black vinegar is made following the same method employed during the Edo period (about 200 years ago). Just three ingredients—natural spring water, steamed rice, and kouji (rice cultured with mold)—are placed into a special aman jar (aman means “vinegar” in the Kagoshima dialect) made of Satsuma ware or another type of ceramic. The contents are allowed anywhere from one to three years to slowly ferment and mature, during which the vinegar turns a deep amber color (from which its name is derived), mellows, and gains depth.

  • Kurobuta Black Pig

    Kurobuta Black Pig

    The Kagoshima kurobuta (“black pig,” or Berkshire pig bred in Kagoshima), with its six patches of white hair on the nose, legs, and other areas, is referred to as roppaku (“six white”). Boasting an exceptional flavor that sets it above other varieties of pork, Kagoshima kurobuta is often featured on gourmet television programs, and Kirishima’s own kurobuta does not fail to live up to its reputation.

  • Shochu Liquor

    Shochu Liquor

    The shochu paradise that is Kagoshima boats many different brands of the liquor. And Kirishima City alone houses seven distilleries of varying size.

  • Kirishima Tea

    Kirishima Tea

    With its propensity for fog due to cool meteorological conditions, the foot of Mount Kirishima-Yama is well-suited to tea cultivation. With its remarkable aroma and extraordinarily deep, delicious flavor, Kirishima tea is drunk regularly by many—both inside and outside of the prefecture.

  • Sekihira mineral water

    Sekihira mineral water

    This mineral water springs from deep in the mountains of Kirishima. Its source is located far up a river concealed by wilderness. The water boasts a long history; it is said to have been discovered in 1832 by rural samurai guided by a revelation from the gods. Sekihira mineral water is safe to drink and is collected, bottled, and sold by Kirishima City.

Tourist Attractions/Events

Revel in Kirishima’s seasonal delights: festivals passed down from the time of gods, humorous dance, the spirited sounding of drums, seas of beautiful flowers, events featuring spectator participation, and so much more! Mingling with the locals is yet another way to enjoy Kirishima.

  • Ryoma Honeymoon Walk in Kirishima

    Ryoma Honeymoon Walk in Kirishima

    This event is based on Ryoma Sakamoto and his wife Oryo’s visit to Kirishima—the first honeymoon in Japan. Held every year in March, it attracts a multitude of participants from all over the country. There are many different walking courses of varying distances.

    • +81­-(0)995­-78-­2115
  • Tenson Korin Kirishima Festival

    Tenson Korin Kirishima Festival

    Kirishima is known as the starting point for the founding of Japan, as described in the Tenson Korin mythology (the descent of the deity Ninigi from heaven). The Tenson Korin Kirishima Festival, held every August, is a display of folk entertainment celebrating such myths. It centers on the Kirishima Kogen Taiko festival, in which various myths are expressed through drumming, and the Minami Kyushu Kagura festival, which expresses myths with Shinto music and dancing dedicated to the gods.

    • +81­-(0)995­-78-­2115
  • Hatsu-Uma Festival

    Hatsu-Uma Festival

    The first festival of spring, The Hatsu-Uma Festival is a lively event held at Kagoshima-Jingu Shrine every year on the Sunday following January 18th of the old Japanese calendar. Large crowds gather to see its parade, which features more than 20 horses adorned in bells and over 2,000 accompanying dancers.

    • +81­-(0)995-­45-­5111
  • Kirishima International Music Festival

    Kirishima International Music Festival

    At this music festival, held annually from the end of July to the beginning of August, spectators are immersed in classical music among the rich natural beauty of Kirishima Plateau. During the festival, famous musicians from both Japan and abroad hold free concerts in the lobbies of their hotels.

    • +81­-(0)995-­78-­8000
  • Kirishima-Jingu Shrine

    Kirishima-Jingu Shrine

    An ancient shrine in which Ninigi-no-Mikoto, a deity who plays the leading role in the mythology of Japan’s founding, is enshrined. It is said to have been established in the sixth century, after which it repeated a cycle of destruction and rebuilding caused by eruptions of Kirishima’s mountains. The current shrine pavilion was constructed and dedicated in 1715 by Yoshitaka Shimazu, fourth lord of the Satsuma Domain.

    • +81­-(0)995­-57­-0001
  • Shiohitashi Hot Springs Ryoma Park

    Shiohitashi Hot Springs Ryoma Park

    Ryoma Sakamoto and his wife Oryo stayed at the Shiohitashi Hot Springs for 18 days during their honeymoon. It has been developed into the current Shiohitashi Hot Springs Ryoma Park. The park contains a non-lodging hot springs facility (whose waters flow from two sources) at which Ryoma Sakamoto is said to have bathed as treatment for his wounds. Its other attractions include a free foot bath, a monument commemorating Sakamoto’s honeymoon and hot spring treatment, and a museum that educates guests about Sakamoto, Kirishima, and Satsuma, and houses exhibits from the famous figure’s day.

    • +81­-(0)995­-76­-0007
  • Kirishima Shinwa No Sato Park and Kirishima Michi No Eki Roadside Station

    Kirishima Shinwa No Sato Park and Kirishima Michi No Eki Roadside Station

    Making use of Kirishima’s unique geography, the park offers bockerl (like sledding with wheels arranged as those on inline skates), miniature golf, and other fun leisure activities. It has an observation deck that is 670 meters above sea level (Tokyo Peil), offering a superb view of the surrounding area. On a clear day, visitors can even see Mount Kirishima-Yama, Sakurajima volcano, and Mount Kaimondake volcano in one sweeping view.

    • +81­-(0)995­-57­-1711
  • Shiroyama Park

    Shiroyama Park

    A park of scenic beauty located 192 meters above sea level (Tokyo Peil), below which lies Kinko-Wan Bay. Sakurajima volcano and Mount Kirishima-Yama are visible to the south and north, respectively. Shiroyama Park’s attractions include an observation deck, Ferris wheel, go kart track, and a miniature golf course.

    • +81­-(0)995­-46­-1561
  • Kareigawa Station

    Kareigawa Station

    The oldest wooden station in the prefecture, it opened in 1903 and has operated for over 110 years. While currently an unmanned station, its elegant wooden construction attracts an endless procession of tourists.

  • Maruo-No-Taki Falls

    Maruo-No-Taki Falls

    Water from the upstream Ei-No-Oh and Iodani hot springs merges into a rare, heated waterfall. At 23 meters in height and 16 meters in depth, the falls are at once majestic and beautiful. Visitors can see the falls illuminated at night.

  • Inukai-No-Taki Falls

    Inukai-No-Taki Falls

    Rushing water plummets 36 meters downward in this majestic, 22-meter-wide waterfall. It is said that Wake no Kiyomaro played in these falls, and Ryoma Sakamoto—champion of Japan’s imperial restoration during the tumultuous end of the Tokugawa Shogunate—visited on his honeymoon. The waterfall is ranked first in Kagoshima’s new top one hundred ranking for scenic beauty, and is located near Wake-Jinja Shrine, Wake-Yu Hot Spring, and other attractions.

  • Kirishima Hot Springs Market

    Kirishima Hot Springs Market

    Located in the center of the Kirishima Hot Springs Village, this establishment provides visitors with dining, souvenir shopping, a foot bath, and a tourism information center. Popular items include eggs and manju (a type of sweet) steamed directly by the hot springs.

    • +81­-(0)995­-78­-3121
  • Kagoshima-Jingu Shrine

    Kagoshima-Jingu Shrine

    Kagoshima-Jingu shrine was the highest ranked shrine in the former province of Osumi. Its current lacquered main pavilion was constructed by Shigetoshi Shimazu, seventh lord of the Satsuma Domain, and is one of the five largest wooden buildings in the country. In spring it holds the Hatsu-Uma Festival, a lively festival featuring dancing horses adorned in bells—an uncommon sight among Japanese festivals.

    • +81­-(0)995­-42­-0020
  • Uenohara Jomon No Mori

    Uenohara Jomon No Mori Exhibit Building/Kagoshima Prefectural Archaeological Center

    This complex contains the remains of ancient settlements, from which visitors can travel back in time to the days of the Jomon period. At the Jomon No Mori exhibition building, visitors can see artifacts excavated from the Uenohara site, as well as a reconstructed Jomon village. Visitors can also try several hands-on experiences, such as making fire or pottery. Left of the entrance to the complex is the Kagoshima Prefectural Archaeological Center, which conducts excavations at various sites around the prefecture.

    • +81­-(0)995­-48­-5701

Getting to Kirishima

Kirishima City is located in Southern Kyushu, roughly in the center of Kagoshima Prefecture. Kagoshima Airport, Kagoshima Prefecture’s “gateway to the sky,” is located here in Kirishima City. It can be reached from within the city by bus or car in about thirty minutes, or by train from Kagoshima-Chuo Station in thirty to fifty minutes. Besides air travel, Kirishima can also be reached via the Kyushu or Higashi-Kyushu Expressways. Whether by air, rail, or car, there are a number of convenient ways to visit our city!

Airplane

Seoul–Kagoshima
90 min (operating 3 times a week: Wed, Fri, Sun)
Shanghai–Kagoshima
100 min (operating 2 times a week: Wed, Sat)
Taipei–Kagoshima
120 min (operating 4 times a week: Tue, Thu, Fri, Sun)
Hong Kong–Kagoshima
180 min (operating 3 times a week: Tue, Thu, Sun)
Fukuoka–Kagoshima
50–55 min
Osaka (Itami)–Kagoshima
70 min
Kansai International Airport–Kagoshima
65–75 min
Kobe–Kagoshima
65–75 min
Nagoya–Kagoshima (Chubu)
75–100 min
Tokyo (Haneda)–Kagoshima
90–120 min
Tokyo (Narita)–Kagoshima
105–135 min

* Please see the airline websites listed below for time tables, fares, and other information.

Railway

JR Shinkansen (below are the fastest possible travel times)
Shin-Osaka Station–Kagoshima-Chuo Station
3 hr 42 min
Okayama Station–Kagoshima-Chuo Station
2 hr 57 min
Hiroshima Station–Kagoshima-Chuo Station
2 hr 21 min
Hakata Station–Kagoshima-Chuo Station
1 hr 17 min
Kumamoto Station–Kagoshima-Chuo Station
43 min
Kirishima Limited Express Train
Kagoshima-Chuo Station–Hayato Station
appox. 33 min
Kagoshima-Chuo Station–Kokubu Station
36 min
Kagoshima-Chuo Station–Kirishima-Jingu (Shrine) Station
approx. 49 min
Miyazaki Station–Kirishima-Jingu (Shrine) Station
approx. 1 hr 30 min
The Hisatsu Line’s Hayato no Kaze Limited Express Train
Hayato Station–Kareigawa Station
approx. 15 min
Hayato Station–Kirishima-Onsen Station
approx. 25 min
Hayato Station–Osumi Yokogawa Station
approx. 35 min

* Please see the website below for time tables and fare schedules.

Bus

* Please see the websites below for time tables and fare schedules.

Household car (or rental car)

Fukuoka Interchange–Mizobe-Kagoshima Kuko (Airport) Interchange
180 min
Kumamoto Interchange–Mizobe-Kagoshima Kuko (Airport) Interchange
105 min
Kagoshima Interchange–Mizobe-Kagoshima Kuko (Airport) Interchange
30 min

* Please see the websites below for time tables and fare schedules.