Japan’s Rustic East: Off the Beaten Path.
Aomori City is located on the northern most portion of Japan’s main island. Annual festivals and beautiful natural scenery make Aomori an exciting port of call. Hirosaki Castle, located about one hour from the cruise port, is a spring must-see destination for cherry blossom viewing. The Nebuta Matsuri Festival, a mainstay of summer, has giant paper lantern floats taking over the city. Travelers can journey through magnificent forests and lakes, as well as the World Heritage designated Shirakami Mountains. Aomori is also the largest apple-producing prefecture in Japan with plenty of delicious apple products to choose from.
Access information from Aomori Port:
- City Center: 5 minutes by taxi or 15-minute walk
- Nearest Public Transit: Aomori Station (various lines) 5 minutes by taxi or 15-minute walk
Hirosaki Castle is a leading cherry blossom destination, with 2,600 cherry trees on view. The park is made up of the grounds that surround Hirosaki Castle, which is protected by a moat, three types of earthworks, and six stone walls that are largely in the same condition since their construction in 1616. Current large-scale renovations of the stone wall prevent visitors from visiting the castle tower but an observation deck is available instead.
The sole outlet for Lake Towada flows with crystal clear water for nearly 8.7 miles. Here, approximately two hours from JR Aomori Station by bus, you can enjoy natural wonders that could never be manmade—various large and small waterfalls, mossy rocks, weaving forest landscapes, and even tree tunnels. Visitors feel reinvigorated by the tree tunnels as they traverse the roads and promenades that have been built around the mountain stream. It is beautiful all year, but especially during the arrival of spring and autumn foliage.
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