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Nature

Take in Seasonal Scenery that Soothes the Soul

Beautiful tributaries flowing into the pure waters of the Nagara and Itadori Rivers and pristine forests — these are some of Mino's finest treasures. The abundant natural scenery, highlighting the flavors of each season, will ease your mind and soothe your soul.



Nature

Kataji Gorge

This scenic gorge, which originates in Fukubegatake, the highest peak in Mino, has never run dry during the drought season and is never dirtied during the flooding season. The area features numerous strangely shaped rocks and bizarre stones in a variety of sizes, such as Senjo-iwa (a multi-tiered rock) and Kaya-no-Taki. In the spring, verdant greenery abounds, while in the fall, autumn leaves and the seasonal richness of nature further accentuate the gorge's beauty. The two-kilometer walking path along the gorge also makes it easy to enjoy. Designated as an Oku Nagara River Prefectural Natural Park.


Suhara Shrine Dollarbird Breeding Site

This dollarbird breeding site has been recognized as a national natural treasure. Dollarbirds, which are slightly larger than pigeons, arrive every May, build giant nests and lay eggs in June, hatch the eggs in July, and fly south to Java and Sumatra near the end of September. These gorgeous birds have turquoise backs and breasts, red beaks and legs, and, when in flight, white spots on their wings. They can be seen flying around the thickets near the Suhara Shrine.


Mt. Tsurugata Tropical Plants

In addition to boasting over 100 species, this pristine natural forest is also a valuable resource for research, as it marks the northern limit for tropical plants. The area is home to upper-story species such as Japanese Chinquapin, persea thunbergii, Chinese cork oak, Japanese cinnnamon, camphor, mochitree, Japanese wax, sakaki, eurya japonica, magnolia hypoleuca, Japanese blue oak, Japanese cypress, Ilex pedunculosa, and clethra, as well as lower-story species such as heavenly bamboo, Japanese star anise, Albizia julibrissin, and Japanese beautyberry.


Oyada Shrine — Maple Valley Mountain Autumn Colors

This area, another national natural treasure, has been a famous spot for autumn colors since the Edo Period. Mountain maples fill the grounds, from the stone steps leading to the main shrine to the valley of maples to the east, and a native forest of giant mountain maples colors the foothills of Mt. Tenno.




Mt. Tanjo

Elevation: 502 m
Time required: Approximately 2 hrs.
On clear days, visitors can see the “Twin Towers” of Nagoya.


Mt. Tenno

Elevation: 537.8 m
Time required: Unknown
Mountain trails can be accessed from the Haku-san Shrine or the Oyada Shrine. There is also a traverse route from Mt. Tanjo.




Mt. Matsukura

Elevation: 316.3 m
Time required: Approximately 2 hrs.
At one time, women were not permitted to set foot on this holy mountain, whose trail features a famous landmark called “Priestess Rock.” Legend has it that a priestess, convinced that her training would protect her from danger, set out on the climb. Then, when she stopped to sit on a rock for a rest, she ended up sticking to it, unable to ever pull herself free. At the peak of the mountain are the Matsukura-yama Shrine and the Haku-san Prayer Spot.


Mt. Kojo

Elevation: 437.1 m
Time required: Approximately 2 hrs.
The Mt. Kojo mountain trail is accessible from the side of the Mino City Sports Park parking lot. The trail has steps, making it great for casual trekking.




Fukubegatake

Elevation: 1,163 m
Time required: Approximately 3 hrs.
The highest peak in Mino is a ten-minute drive from Kataji Gorge, and there is a parking lot at the trail entrance. With many rocky areas, the mountain is a popular spot for bouldering (a type of rock climbing).

 


Parks

Ogura Park

This mountain may be on the small side (159 m), but in the spring its roughly 1,000 cherry trees, including Yoshino cherries and wild cherries, are in full bloom, making it one of Gifu Prefecture's Hida-Mino 33 Best Sakura Spots. In addition to an observation platform from which visitors can view the Nagara River and udatsu-lined old streets, this relaxing area also features the remnants of Ogura Castle (built by Kanamori Nagachika) and a zoo that is home to Japanese monkeys and deer.


Kanbora Firefly Park

In June, luciola (Japanese fireflies) can be seen in the Kanbora area. Appreciate their beauty in a still, peaceful natural environment.


Sodai Park Iris Garden

Located at the joining of the Nagara and Itadori Rivers, this park is best known for the irises that bloom around its watermills every June. Enthusiasts flock to the garden to take in the wonder of the many varieties that can be found in the area.