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Bandai-kogen Highlands磐梯(ばんだい)高原

The huge variety of land astounds all who visit this region, as does the mysterious multi-colored tinge of the lake water.

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  3. Fukushima
  4. Bandai-kogen Highlands

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The huge variety of land astounds all who visit this region, as does the mysterious multi-colored tinge of the lake water.

The area to the north of Mt. Bandai-san in Bandai-kogen Highlands that lies in the northern part of Fukushima Prefecture is called Ura-Bandai, and is part of Bandai-Asahi National Park. The lava from the great eruption of Mt. Bandai-san in 1888 flowed into the Nagase-gawa River upstream and created many different sized ponds and lakes, such as Lake Hibara-ko, Lake Akimoto-ko, Lake Onogawa-ko as well as Nakase-numa Pond and Oguni-numa Pond, and marsh areas.
 
Among the over 100 ponds and lakes that exist in the Bandai-kogen Highlands area, perhaps the most fascinating is the group of Goshiki-numa (five-colored ponds) and lakes, where you can see the wonder of volcanic material dissolving in the water, with time and sunlight changing the color of the water from shades of green to whitish blue and then to reddish blue. A promenade allows visitors to tour this unique area with its 40 different lakes and ponds, like Bishamon-numa, Aka-numa, Benten-numa, Ao-numa, Ruri-numa, and Yanagi-numa, a walk that takes about an hour.

The area is especially beautiful during the seasons when the trees are covered with fresh green leaves, or in autumn when the leaves begin to change color. You can see the greatest number of wild birds there in June. In winter, snowshoeing is also very popular way to enjoy the surrounding nature.
 
Next to the entrance of the Nakase-numa Promenade is the Ura-Bandai Site Station, a base for visitors that provides information about the Ura-Bandai area and its hiking routes, gives advice on related matters, and provides guides who can accompany visitors to enable them to experience the area's natural beauty to the fullest.
 

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Directions

From Tokyo: 1h 20 min to Koriyama Station by JR Tohoku Shinkansen Line. 40 min from Koriyama to Inawashiro Station by JR Ban'etsu-saisen Line (rapid service), and 25 min from Inawashiro Station to Onogawa-ko Iriguchi by Aizu bus.

 

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