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Lake Nojiri “Lakeside Leisure” Course

Lake Nojiri “Lakeside Leisure” Courseの写真
hiking Boat
Time Required:
1 h 30 min.
10 km
The shrine on the lake and the Naumann elephant (Palaeoloxodon naumanni) – Beautiful Lake Nojiri brims with the romance of ancient times.

Course Outline

From July to September, Lake Nojiri receives many visitors from around Japan and overseas. Families kayaking, couples stretching out on sailboats, and other people enjoying the dazzling sun and sparkling lake surface bring out the summer atmosphere. Viewing those scenes leisurely from a pleasure boat with an idyllic lake breeze at your face, you will truly feel the resort spirit. The lake is also famous for the excavation of ancient stone utensils and the fossils of Naumann elephants (Palaeoloxodon naumanni) and Yabe's Giant Deer at the bottom of the lake. It is hypothesized that the lake was home to the hunter lifestyle some 40,000 years ago; even now, large-scale excavation surveys are carried out every two years. The excavated materials can be seen at the Nojiri-ko Museum. This course offers an enjoyable walk as you look out at the beautiful lake and ponder the romance of ancient times.


Biwa-jima Island, the shrine that rises from the lake
Biwa-jima Island, the shrine that rises from the lake

Uga-jinja, the shrine on the lake

Rising from the lake, this shrine welcomes a never-ending stream of worshipers despite the inconvenience of having to travel over the lake to reach it. These visitors are perhaps drawn by the uniqueness of an entire island as the grounds of a shrine. The shrine is also popular as a hidden “power spot.” At the torii gate near the entry, note the frame (currently a replica) inscribed with the characters for “Uga-jinja Shrine.” This is said to have been written by Katsu Kaishu (1823-1899), a warrior and statesman from the end of the Edo Period to the start of the Meiji Period.
*Pleasure boats do not operate during winter. Contact Nojiriko Teikisen for details.

Lunch time viewing the lake
Lunch time viewing the lake

Lunch time by the lake

The Lake Nojiri area offers several restaurants with terrace dining. From early summer to autumn, you can enjoy a relaxing meal while gazing out upon the lake with its abundant water. In winter, take in the snow-covered white scenery from indoors. Enjoy a lunch that features local vegetables from the highland.

Space of Greenery, Water, and Wind
Space of Greenery, Water, and Wind

Relaxing at the Space of Greenery, Water, and Wind

Another attraction of Lake Nojiri is searching out the many lovely monuments to the Naumann elephant (Palaeoloxodon naumanni). Their locations include the Space of Greenery, Water, and Wind, the perfect spot for a keepsake photo of yourself and Lake Nojiri. This space features a wide expanse of grass and benches. It is a great spot to read a book while looking at the shining waters of Lake Nojiri.

Course Map

Lake Nojiri “Lakeside Leisure” Course

Course Time

Starting Point
Nojiri-ko Museum
3 min.
0.2 km
Nojiriko (Bus Stop)
3 min.
0.2 km
Line Plaza, Pleasure Boat Dock (Pleasure Boat)
35 min.
6 km
Biwa-jima Island
10 min.
0.3 km
Biwa-jima Island (Pleasure Boat)
5 min.
1 km
Line Plaza, Pleasure Boat Dock
3 min.
0.1 km
Mitoguchi Park
6 min.
0.4 km
Naumann Elephant Excavation Site
10 min.
0.8 km
Space of Greenery, Water, and Wind
15 min.
1 km
Nojiri-ko Museum
*Course time and distance are estimates.