Starts in: Azumino
Ends in: Azumino
Of the major mountain ranges in Japan, the Northern Alps are perhaps the most visually spectacular, with endless, ragged rocky ridges high above the tree line extending uninterrupted as far as the eye can see. Massive 3,000m peaks fall into view in every direction, awing you with both their beauty and dominance over the surrounding landscape. For trekkers, they provide a unique opportunity to traverse long, continuous alpine trails with near-constant 360-degree panoramic views, and Japan's excellent mountain huts provide the perfect refuge and resupply points for multi-day outings.
There are countless route options spread across the area, but one of the most varied and scenic trails is known as Panorama Ginza. Ginza is a bustling major shopping street in Tokyo and, and the term Ginza has now become synonymous with popularity. Aptly named, this is a popular route amongst Japanese hikers specifically due to the amazing panoramas viewable along the trail's entire length. The trail rarely dips below 2,500m, and takes hikers to the summits of 4 major mountains: Mt. Tsubakuro, Mt. Otensho, Mt. Jonen and Mt. Cho. The lofty position of the ridge offers the chance to take in amazing sunsets and sunrises, including the "alpenglow" phenomenon, where the tops of the mountains opposite the rising sun glow red with the first rays of morning sunshine. Viewed from Panorama Ginza, the morning alpenglow directly illuminates the most imposing and impressive range of peaks in Japan, a 7km stretch of rock that includes half of Japan's 10 tallest mountains.
This trail, beginning and ending in forest, quickly rises to the ridge that forms the bulk of the distance, and covers surfaces ranging from hard-packed dirt, boulder fields and loose sand and rock along the way. On this hike, we will cover a distance of roughly 30km, with approximately 3,000 meters of total elevation gain, and we should expect to be on the trail for between 4 to 8 hours per day. This is not a remote wilderness trek, but it is an excellent introduction to central Japan's stunning mountain scenery and hiking culture.
IMAGE GALLERY (October, 2019)
All ground transportation, by private car and/or taxi during the tour is included in the price.
*Please note, that although the tour is listed as starting and ending in the city of Azumino, we are able to pick you up and/or drop you off for a small additional free from nearby Matsumoto if necessary. Please inquire for details.
Basic hiking insurance covering personal injury, liability and search and rescue is included in the price.
Three nights of lodging during the tour, in mountain huts along the trail, is included in the price. All bedding will also be provided, eliminating the need to carry a tent, sleeping bag, or other bulky overnight gear.
ONSEN (HOT SPRING)
After coming off the mountain at the conclusion of our 4-day trek, we will head directly to a local onsen for a shower and relaxing soak to clean up and refresh our tired bodies. The bathing fee is included in the price, along with complimentary towels and toiletries.
BREAKFASTS & DINNERS
All dinners and breakfasts, excluding breakfast on day one and dinner on day four, are included in the price. These meals will be prepared and provided by the mountain huts, and will be traditional Japanese meals.
*Please let us know if you have any food allergies or dietary restrictions before the commencement of the tour. If necessary, we will try to arrange for the mountain huts to prepare a special meal that meets your needs.
LUNCH, DRINKS & SNACKS
*No lunch, drinks or snacks or drinks are provided. You will need to bring your own food and drinks for eating and drinking along the trail for the first part of day one, but you will be able to buy snacks and drinks for the rest of the hike at the mountain huts along the way. It is also recommended that you eat breakfast prior to the start of the tour on day one, and come fueled and ready to go.
For this tour to operate at the listed price, we require a minimum of 2 persons.
Group size will be limited to a maximum of 4 persons.
WHAT TO BRING
If you would like to contact us to ask questions, receive more information, or inquire about booking this trip, please either mail us directly using our email address, or submit an inquiry through the contact form below. We are looking forward to hearing from you!