Akechidaira Ropeway, located just off the famous Irohazaka road in Nikko, offers unsurpassable views over Lake Chuzenji and Kegon falls from the top of a nearby mountain. The ride itself is short and not very exciting, but the views are of a kind you won’t get anywhere else.
Only here can you truly appreciate the amazing geology of Chuzenji area. The lake is surrounded by mountains on all sides but one, where its waters fall down in a straight line as if trying to escape the confines of its stone basin. Mount Nantai is towering to the right, and from late October through November the mountain slopes are ablaze with colors. Winter will present you with an unforgettable sight of Kegon falls turned into one giant icicle.
Of course, to be able to see all this you need to visit on a clear day. It may get quite chilly at the observation point at any time of year, so bring an extra layer. Also, be prepared to wait in line – Akechidaira is a popular tourist spot and gets crowded on weekends, especially during fall season.
How to get there
From Nikko station get on a bus going to Lake Chuzenji or Yumoto Onsen and get off at Akechidaira. If travelling by car, just follow the Irohazaka road to Lake Chuzenji – you will not miss the ropeway’s large parking lot. No matter what transport option you use, you will only be able to visit the ropeway on your way up, not down, so plan accordingly.