A total of 30 sites throughout Japan—from Hokkaido in the north to Okinawa and the Ogasawara Islands in the south—have been officially designated National Parks.
This page provides a brief description of each of these National Parks.
Designation: December 4, 1934
Area: 114,908 ha
Prefectures: Fukushima, Tochigi, Gunma
Encompassing the Oku-Nikko area—famous for Kegon Falls, Lake Chuzenji, and Senjogahara—as well as the Kinugawa River, the Shiobara Ravine, and the plain situated at the foot of Mt. Nasu-dake, Nikko National Park is blessed with a rich variety of scenic beauty and natural settings. The park is also famous for being the site of the Toshogu Shrine and other shrines and temples.
Designation: August 30, 2007
Area: 37,200 ha
Prefectures: Fukushima, Tochigi, Gunma, Niigata
Visitors can behold a beautiful landscape consisting of majestic Mt. Hiuchiga-take, Mt. Shibutsu, and other peaks rising 2,000 meters or higher above sea level around Ozegahara, one of the preeminent moors of Japan, and the many moors and ponds that dot the Ozenuma. Unique moors can also be found on Mt. Aizu-komaga-take, Mt. Taishaku, and Mt. Tashiro.
Designation: July 10, 1950
Area: 126,259 ha
Prefectures: Saitama, Tokyo, Yamanashi, Nagano
Chichibu-Tama-Kai National Park is home to natural forests of Western hemlock and Veitch's silver fir trees and is the site of many old stratum mountains, including Mt. Kumotori and Mt. Mitake. Located near Tokyo, this park is the source of the headwaters for the Arakawa, Chikuma, and Tama rivers. Natural forests and gorges serve as excellent outdoor recreational settings. Mt. Mitake and Mt. Mitsumine are ancient places of mountain worship.
Designation: October 16, 1972
Area: 6,629 ha
Consisting of over 30 large and small islands, including Chichijima and Hahajima, that belong to the subtropical Ogasawara Archipelago situated between 1,000 and 1,200 kilometers south of Tokyo, Ogasawara National Park is the smallest National Park in Japan. Thanks to its maritime location, the park is remarkable for its many indigenous plants and animals, such as the Ogasawara okoumori (Pteropus pselaphon) and Munin-nobotan (Melastoma Tetramerum).
Designation: February 1, 1936
Area: 121,695 ha
Prefectures: Tokyo, Kanagawa, Yamanashi, Shizuoka
Fuji-Hakone-Izu National Park is noted for its iconic panoramic scenes of Mt. Fuji, the highest peak in all of Japan, the Fujigoko Lakes that lie at the foot of this mountain, and the Aokigahara Woodlands. In Hakone, volcanoes consisting of Mt. Kamiyama and Mt. Komagatake, the Sengokuhara Plains, and Lake Ashinoko combine to create a miniature landscape effect. Izu boasts fantastic views of the Amagi Mountain Range and the seacoast on both the east and west sides of the peninsula. Each of the islands forming the Izu-Shichito ("Seven Islands") is rich in unique natural wonders.
Designation: June 1, 1964
Area: 35,752 ha
Prefectures: Yamanashi, Nagano, Shizuoka
The Minami Alps National Park extends into Yamanashi, Nagano, and Shizuoka prefectures and is the site of many mountains rising 3,000 meters or more above sea level, including Mt. Kita-dake (at 3,192 meters, the second highest peak in Japan). Alpine plants grow on Mt. Kita-dake and Mt. Senjogatake and precious, indigenous plants found nowhere else can also be seen in this area.