Wakayama 和歌山

Wakayama castle in Wakayama city

Wakayama prefecture is located just south of Osaka on the Kii Peninsula and part of the kansai region in Japan. Wakayama city with a population of 370,000 people is the prefectural capital. The prefectures mild climate makes it ideal for agriculture and Wakayama is the largest producer of fruit in whole of Japan.

Things to see in Wakayama

Some of the most visited sightseeing spots in Wakayama.

  1. Mount Koya

    Okunoin cemetery at Mount Koya

    Mount Koya (Koyasan) is the home of Shingon Buddhism, a buddhist sect first introduced from China by the monk Kukai more than 1,200 years ago. Their buddhist headquarter is still active with more than 100 temples spread over the tree filled mountain. Many of the temples also offer lodging, called shukubo in Japanese. Beside overnighting shukobo also usually includes two meals and let you perticipate in early morning meditation.

    How to get there

    From Osaka, using the Nankai Koya Line until arriving at Gokurakubashi Station. From Gokurakubashi transfer to the cablecar for a five minutes ride up the mountain to Koyasan. Once up the mountain take the bus to the town center. Taking around 10-15 minutes depending on your stop.

  2. Wakayama's Onsen (Hot Springs)

    Onsen in Wakayama overlooking the sea

    Hot springs can be found most everywhere in Japan, but Wakayama is known for it's many famous onsen. Some which offers spectacular views of the ocean while you bath, especially beautiful at sunset. And in the small onsen town of Yunomine you will find Tsuboyu, the oldest onsen in Japan. First discovered more than 1,800 years ago, this hot spring is the only one to get registered as a UNESCO World Heritage site.

    How to get there

    Ryujin bus line from Kii-Tanabe JR station, get off at the Yunomine Onsen stop.

  3. Fruit Picking

    Strawberry picking in Wakayama

    Since Wakayama is the largest producer of fruits in Japan, several farms offers handpicking of a large variety of fresh fruits. Mikan (Japanese oranges) are usually available from the middle of September to the end of July. Strawberries from beginning of January to the middle of May, followed by blueberries from June to the end of August. Peach and melon both start from end of June to end of August. Grapes are available from the middle of July to the end of October. Some farms also produce their own wine which can be bough all year round. Japanese persimmons start from the middle of September to the beginning of December. Kiwi fruits have the shortest season, starting in the middle of October to the beginning of November. Farms are usually divided in time limited eat-all-you-can or takehome (paying by piece or weight).

    How to get there

    Due to their location most farms requires a car ride. Please contact the farm in advance to make reservations and get directions.

  4. Adventure World

    Pandas in Adventure World zoo in Wakayama

    A rather large combined amusement park, aquarium and zoo with animals from all over the world. With the most striking being the giant pandas, of which twins were born in December 2014. Beside a popular dolphin show, the zoo also features a large safari habitat that visitors can travel though by different tours. The amusement park side includes a Ferris wheel, roller-coaster and a go-cart track among other things.

    How to get there

    From Osaka, ride the JR-Line Kiseihonsen Express from Tennoji to JR Shirahama station. Taking little over 2 hours.