When the word bamboo crosses minds, people first think about China, mainly because they are always featured in most China movies. Forget China. Japan has a bamboo forest that's as impressive as, perhaps, more than what's seen in those films. Located on Kyoto's western side, in the Arashiyama region, Sagano Bamboo Forest is one of the world’s most enchanting and major tourist attractions in Japan. It is one of those destinations that one should explore at least once in their lifetime. If one would search for "places to visit before dying," Japan's Sagano Bamboo Forest is more likely to pop up in the search results as one of those beautiful, rare destinations.
Best Time To Explore Sagano Bamboo Forest
Visitors can explore this forest all year round, but Summer, the peak season is the best time to explore Sagano Bamboo Forest. Tourists should expect lots of crowds during this time - maybe choose to explore during weekdays, in the early mornings and late evenings to beat crowds. Winter is not such a bad time to visit and explore this forest as travelers get to experience the illuminations of the Kyoto Arashiyana Hanatouro.
Top Activities In Sagano Bamboo Forest
One of the most impressive activities in Sagano Bamboo Forest is walking through the beautiful, flourishing path at the heart of the bamboo trees. There are always plenty of photogenic backgrounds to get some incredible pictures for show. The most breathtaking part about exploring this area of the forest is the whispering sound of the leaves whenever the wind blows against them. Chosen as one of the "100 soundscapes of Japan," the forest's sound effect is very relaxing – something not to be missed.
For an unforgettable fascinating experience, exploring Japan and its surrounding is beautiful. But what could be more fun than riding a bike along the forest’s pathways? Travelers can always rent bikes at the train stations around. Another good news? The Japanese Government promotes ecotourism by making rental bikes available through the forest and the nearby attractions. Looking for a raw Japanese experience? Try biking through the remote area while taking in the refreshing air, and the feel of nature is quite mesmerizing.
Enjoying the incredible views of the cherry blossoms through a sightseeing tram ride is amazing, especially during the Spring. The tram leaves the Torokko Saagano, a nearby station to Kameoka, a 7-kilometer journey. There are a bunch of impressive attractions that travelers might want to explore.
Top Tourist Attractions Near Sagano Bamboo Forest
Okochi Sanso Villa
With a path treading through the famous Sagano Bamboo Forest, getting to Okochi Sanso gives the incredible opportunity of enjoying beautiful views of the surroundings and strolling through stunning gardens, tea houses, and other gorgeous buildings. Used to be owned by the late Denjiro Okochi, the most famous silent movie star in Japan, exploring Okochi Sannso Villa is worth it. The villa is situated at the back of Sagano Bamboo Forest and covers an area of 2 hectares.
Also known as the Moon Crossing Bridge, Togetsu-Kyo Bridge is a spectacular landmark in Arashiyama. Constructed in the 1185-1333, this bridge has been an iconic attraction for a year. Now that it went through a series of reconstructions in the 1930s, it is even more beautiful and offers an incredible combination of mountain views and cherry trees to explore and feel nature at its best.
Arayashiyama Events To Attend
Kyoto Hanatouro is a popular event that gives deep insight into the culture of Kyoto. The event happens every year in December in Arashiyama District, and it is something no one would want to miss. The most mesmerizing thing about this event is experiencing thousands of lanterns lined along the 5-kilometer trail. Travelers can then experience the performance demonstrating the Japanese ancient fishing method; using the Cormorant – an even to remember.
Where To Eat In Sagano Bamboo Forest
Togetsutei Shofukaku is a popular restaurant situated on Togetsu-Kyo Bridge's west side and offers stunning views of the rivers and the best of Japanese cuisine. Takemura is also another beautiful ancient Japanese food eatery to try out. It mainly serves yu-tofu, a popular Japanese dish, especially in Winter. It is made from pure local fresh water and soybeans (Japanese soybeans, of course!).
How To Get To Sagano Bamboo Forest
Getting to Sagano Bamboo Forest is quite easy. It is located just about a 10-minute walk from Saga Arashiyama Station (JR Sagano line). A 15-minute walk from Arashiyama Station will also get travelers to the forest. Another easy way is walking for minutes from Keifuku Arashiyama Station. Travelers staying in the city of Tokyo will take about 30 minutes to get there. Those living near Tenryu Temple or Nonomiya Shrine can get to Sagano faster. Travelers can even stop by the shrine and the temple - and have a taste of their charm. By the way, Tenryu is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of Kyoto’s 5 major temples.
Sagano Bamboo Forest is an unbeatable tourist destination and would be an adventure experience to remember.