Shibazakura — Spring Is Not All About Cherry Blossoms

I always dream of bringing myself to Shizuoka Pref. to see first-hand the stunning view of Japan grounds when it’s carpeted in pink hues and shades, with Fuji san as the backdrop is a big plus. However, Shizuoka is about 4-5 hours drive away from Kani and I don’t think it’s time to go this year. Nonetheless, my craving for moss pink was fulfilled when I came to know about Aichi’s Toyone Village that grows the same beauty.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

The hill of Mt. Chausu Plateau (Chausuyama) serves as home for six (6) varieties of shibazakura. Elevated at 1,358 meters, these moss pink cover a wide slope (22,000 square meters) of as far as the eyes can see. From May to early June, Shibazakura Festival (Moss Pink Festival) is held when this flora is in full bloom. Festival means the flowers are at its peak, more sightseers alike and more selection of food to devour.

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The best time to go during the festival is from the afternoon up until night so one can witness its exquisiteness basked in artificial lights. They illuminate these flowers at night, offering another kind of magnificence for the eyes to see. If you have other plans for night-time, I recommend you to go early in the morning to save time on waiting hours for parking space availability. Even if there are 1,000 parking slots, it will still run out of space if you arrive there at almost noon.

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Access to the hill from the parking area offers two choices. One is breathtaking, literally; the other one is heart-pulsating (for me perhaps). If you’re not exercising, the first one will take your breath away since it will entail you to walk and hike to the top of the hill. The next one, as I described it, requires immense courage for an altophobic me. The 2nd way will be using the ski lift to bring you up there. It terrified me given that the lift has no straps or bands in front that could at least protect me from falling when the lift is shaken by strong winds. I didn’t actually move a few seconds after I sat; I could’t take pictures though if I won’t move so I chose to capture the picturesque scenery (pictures over fear!). 😀

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The weather that day was fine but blustery was seeking for attention. Taking pictures was a bit frustrating as we couldn’t smile without holding our hair in place or secure our stomachs from unwanted gasses brought by tough and chilly wind. 😀 It’s already spring but the breeze felt like winter. Nevertheless, I still commend to you to visit the place in spring, just a short trip from Nagoya. We just hadn’t anticipated the proper travel garments to wear; blustery wasn’t indicated in the weather forecast on that day anyway.

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How to Get There

  1. Public Transpo. At Toei station (JR Iida line), you can take the courtesy bus to Chasuyama. Note that this bus requires prior reservation.
  2. Private Cars. One can make use of the expressways or just use the general highway. You can use your devices (car’s or personal) for navigation. Japan has an almost accurate, most often than not, when it comes to utilizing GPS. Click here for direct access to google map. (Parking fee: 700 円 during festival; otherwise, 1,000 円.)

(You can visit Aichi Now site for updates about the actual dates of its festival.)


Enjoy and have fun!

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