Hemmed by mountains, Nagano prefecture has maintained much of its natural environment. As a nature lover, this is one of the reasons why I moved here. Ueda in particular offers natural attractions year-round. During cherry blossom season, Ueda Castle is not to be missed. Summer brings music festivals and hiking in surrounding mountains. As the air cools in the autumn, I love strolling through the streets of Bessho after a relaxing dip. And of course, the ski areas of Sugadaira call to me every winter.Gibson <Canada>



A Mountain Mecca for Rugby, Skiing, Hiking, and More!

At an elevation of 1,300 m, this ‘Davos of Japan’, one of major ski resorts in Japan, is a popular year-round destination for sports.

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Toishi & Komeyama Castles Mountain Fort Hiking


Discover Ueda's Hidden Castle Ruins

There were numerous forts and castles in mountainous and strategic locations during Japan's warring period. The ruins of several of these forts still remain in the Ueda area. History fans love hiking around and following the history of the old ruins of theses castles, such as a headquarters for the Sanada clan and the site of a famous battle.

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Hiking to Mt. Ogamidake and Megamidake


Easy Access, Great Hiking

Mt. Ogamidake: Enjoy the views from Mt. Okamidake at 1,250 m, just a 2-hour hike from Bessho Hot Springs. Bessho Hot Springs also hosts a beautiful 500-year old festival of calling for rain, called the “Take no Nobori”.
Mt. Megamidake: Reach a height of 927 m in a one-hour hike. The hiking trails here are closed from September to November, due to matsutake mushroom harvesting. There is no lookout at the castle ruins on top of the mountain.

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Shiodadaira and Bessho Onsen


Nagano's Oldest Hot Spring and Scenic Countryside

Shiodadaira is the name of the wide flatlands you come to while heading east from Ueda Station towards Bessho Onsen on the Ueda Dentetsu Line. Like Bessho Onsen, it has many old and interesting buildings that have survived from the middle ages.

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Mt. Taro


Spectacular Views of Mt. Fuji and the Japan Alps

A popular hike with local people, this mountain has several trails and can be hiked within 2 hours.

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Seasons and Flowers

  • Summer

    Utsukushigahara Highlands

  • Autumn

    Autumn leaves in Kakuma Gorge and Rice Fields in Shiodadaira

  • Winter

    Winter Scenery in Sugadaira
    and Bessho

  • Spring

    Cherry Blossoms
    at Ueda Castle

  • Cherry Blossoms at Ueda Castle

    Flowering season: from the beginning to mid-April.
    Access from Ueda station: 15 min on foot

  • Peach blossoms in Yori

    Flowering season: from the end of April to the beginning of May
    Access from Ueda station: Take the Chikuma bus (60 min) to "Shimotakeshi" bus stop, and walk for 30 min.

  • Lavender at Shinshu International Music Village

    Flowering season: from the beginning to mid-July
    Access from the Shinano Railway Oya Station: 15 min by taxi

  • Lotuses and Wisteria at Kokubunji (temple)

    Flowering season: July and from mid-May to late May

  • Azalea in Sanada Village

    Flowering season: mid-May