Two hundred forty-meter tall vertical precipice carved by a river. Two fantastic caves with different atmospheres.
The Ikura-do and Maki-do caves are situated in Niimi in northwestern Okayama.
The Ikura-do Cave is located in the 240-meter tall vertical precipice formed by slow but long erosion of the limestone by the Takahashi-gawa River that runs from the spring near the border with Tottori Prefecture to Kurashiki City. The total length of the cave, one of three major limestone caves in Japan, is 1,200 meters. There is a series of stalactites with various names, and you can enjoy a fantastic underground adventure. A short tour is also offered for those who are not sure about walking the whole distance of the cave. The area around the Ikura-do Cave is called Ikura-kyo, a beautiful ravine carved by the Takahashi-gawa River in the limestone tableland. It is also famous for beautifully colored leaves in autumn. The Kusama Karst Tableland extends upstream.
The Maki-do Cave is a 450-meter-long limestone cave. It is relatively smaller than the Ikura-do Cave, but is characterized by an underground lake at the farthest end of the cave. The red Ryugu-bashi Bridge and the many other bridges built on the lake are illuminated to entertain visitors.
[Air] 1h 15 min from Haneda to Okayama Airport.
[Rail] 3h 20 min from Tokyo to Okayama Station by JR Tokaido-Sanyo Shinkansen Line, and 1h 20 min from Okayama to Ikura Station by JR Hakubi Line.
[Rail] 45 min from Shin-Osaka to Okayama by Shinkansen.