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  • Kamuikotan autumn foliage
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  • Entrance to the Foreign Tree Specimen Forest
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  • Ainu ritual
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  • Hokkaido squirrel in the Foreign Tree Specimen Forest
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  • Old Kamuikotan Railroad Station
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  • Kamui iwa
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  • Kamuikotan
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  • Footpath in the Foreign Tree Specimen Forest
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  • Katakuri flower in the Foreign Tree Specimen Forest
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  • Rows of blossoming cherry trees in the Foreign Tree Specimen Forest
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Arashiyama & Kamui Recreation Forests

1,104.27ha

[Arashiyama District] Lowest: 160 m / Average 220–275 m / Highest: 275 m

[Kamuikotan District] Lowest: 100 m / Average 100–200 m / Highest:593 m

[Specimen Forest District] 100 m

The world of an Ainu demon legend and the novel "Hyoten"

The world of an Ainu demon legend and the novel "Hyoten"

Newest information
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Please visit official tourism websites for the latest updates and information.
Area
Hokkaido
Activities
Flower-viewing (Cherry (Prunus))(Includes surrounding area) Autumn leaf viewing (Includes surrounding area) Birdwatching (Includes surrounding area) Picnics (lawn area/park) (Includes surrounding area) Paddling / fishing / boating (pond / lake / river) (Outside the forest) (Payment required for use of facilities and participation in activities) Canyoning (River trekking) (Outside the forest)(Payment required for use of facilities and participation in activities) Bicycle rental (Outside the forest) Guided tours (Outside the forest)(Payment required for use of facilities and participation in activities) Hands-on forestry / woodworking experience (Outside the forest) (Payment required for use of facilities and participation in activities)
Overview
Geographical/topographical features
The Arashiyama and Kamuikotan Districts are located in a hilly area, and visitors can easily have picnics and explore nature in Arashiyama Park and Hoppo Yasoen, etc. The Arashiyama Observation Platform, at an elevation of 253 m, offers panoramic views of the magnificent Taisetsuzan Mountain Range, the Ishikari River and the Asahikawa city area. It is also a popular night view point.
In contrast, the Specimen Forest District is located on flat land near an urban area. Due to its accessibility, it is loved by locals as a place of recreation and is also visited by many tourists.
Historical/cultural features
The Arashiyama District is said to have been named by Hokkaido Development Commission officials who inspected the area in the late 19th century and found the scenery to resemble that of Arashiyama in Kyoto. "Arashiyama and the view from Arashiyama" was selected as one of the eight best views of Asahikawa in 1997.
The Specimen Forest District is a forest that was planted in 1898 in order to grow and observe foreign tree species such as Sutorobumatsu (eastern white pine (Pinus strobus)) and Yoroppatohi (Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) Karst.)). Today, about 6,000 trees from 52 species are grown in the forest. Also, the Foreign Tree Specimen Forest, which formed the setting of Ayako Miura's famous novel "Hyoten" (Freezing Point), and the Miura Ayako Literature Museum in the district attract large numbers of visitors.
Climate, flora and fauna
Asahikawa City has four very distinct seasons with large temperature differences ranging from over 30°C in the summer to below -20°C in the winter. Around the Arashiyama Recreation Forest, you can see plants including Obananoenreiso (Trillium camschatcense) and Katakuri (Erythronium japonicum Decne), as well as birds and animals such as Ezorisu (Hokkaido squirrel (Sciurus vulgaris orientals)) and Kawasemi (common kingfisher (Alcedo atthis)).
Meanwhile, the gorge around the Kamui Recreation Forest fascinates visitors throughout the year with its changing seasonal beauty―cherry blossoms in the spring, rich green in the summer, colored leaves in the autumn and snow in the winter.
Attractions
At the Arashiyama & Kamui Recreation Forests, visitors can hike (the Kamui iwa Hiking Course takes 90 minutes and the Kamui Hiking Course 120 minutes on foot), explore nature and go on quests for legends and remnants of the past. Particularly, in the Kamuikotan Gorge, the Ishikari River channel suddenly narrows and becomes wild and up to 70 m deep. Boats often overturned here in the past. According to legend, the Ainu people feared this to be the work of a demon living in the gorge. Along the riverbank, you can see "Kamuikotan pot holes" (designated a cultural property by Asahikawa City) formed through erosion by the river. These holes, which are said to be the "demon's footprints," have diameters of up to 5 m.
The Specimen Forest District has the Foreign Tree Specimen Forest, which formed the setting of novel "Hyoten" ("Freezing Point") by the late Ayako Miura, who was born in Asahikawa City. Visitors can observe various precious trees, including eastern white pine, that were planted in 1898. In addition, the adjacent Miura Ayako Literature Museum displays various documents and materials concerning Ayako Miura and also holds special exhibitions.
Latest Information
Regular events
Kotan Festival (September)
Danger information
Please be careful of the dangerous animals that inhabit the area, such as Higuma (Ezo brown bears (Ursus arctos)), Ticks and Mamushi (Japanese pit viper (Gloydius blomhoffii)) at Kamuikotan District.
Ezo Brown bears: Higuma (brown bears (Ursus arctos)) may be present during the period from May to November. When entering the forest, please carry a bear bell and stay in a group. Check for local information on bear sightings and warnings and follow instructions.
Mamushi (Japanese pit viper (Gloydius blomhoffii)): Mamushi are lurking under rocks, so be careful not to look into carelessly.
Ticks: Wearing long sleeves and long trousers is essential. After strolling, make sure that ticks are not on your clothes or backpack.
Usage Guide
Entrance fee
Recreation Forest:
None
Miura Ayako Literature Museum:
Adults 700 yen; university students 300 yen; and free for elementary school, junior high school and high school students, and for supporting members, students of Asahikawa University and Asahikawa University Junior College and holders of disability certificates
Operating hours and seasons
Accessible 24 hours a day, 365 days a year
Operation hours by staff
Arashiyama District:
Observation platform nearby. Asahikawa Arashiyama Visitor Center (operating hours: 10:00 am – 4:00 pm; closed on Mondays through Wednesdays and during the winter (November through April)) Kamuikotan District and Specimen Forest District: None
Accommodation options
Several hotels near Asahikawa Station
Facility
Toilets and drinking fountains (Includes surrounding area) Note) 1, only in the Specimen Forest District Toilet (accessible) (Includes surrounding area) Note) 1, only in the Specimen Forest District Walking trail (Includes surrounding area) Bike trail (Outside the forest) Parking lot (Includes surrounding area) 1 each Observation platform (Outside the forest) Note) Only in the Arashiyama District Visitor center (staffed only) Note) Only in the Arashiyama District Vending machine (Includes surrounding area) Shop (Includes surrounding area) Restaurant (Outside the forest) Campsite and/or cabins (Outside the forest) (Payment required for use of facilities and participation in activities) Free public wireless LAN (Wi-Fi) (Outside the forest) Specimen forest/Botanic garden (Includes surrounding area) Only in the Specimen Forest District and Arashiyama District Resource center/Museum (Includes surrounding area) (Payment required for use of facilities and participation in activities) Only in the Specimen Forest District and Arashiyama District Cultural asset (nationally designated) (Outside the forest) (Payment required for use of facilities and participation in activities) Accommodation facilities (Hotels/Japanese inns) (Outside the forest) Hot Spring (Outside the forest)
Map
pdf
Location
Arashiyama District:
Etambetsucho Arashiyama, Asahikawa City; Arashiyama, Takasu Town
Kamuikotan District:
Kamuicho Kamuikotan, Asahikawa City; Osamunai, Fukagawa City
Specimen Forest District:
Kagura 7-jo 8-chome, Asahikawa City
Access
(Distances and times are provided as a guide only)

<Parking lot capacity / parking charges>
  • ・Arashiyama (Observation Platform) District:Free parking for 10 vehicles
  • ・Kamuikotan District:Free parking for 30 vehicles
  • ・Specimen Forest (Foreign Tree Specimen Forest) District:Free parking for 30 vehicles
Nearby tourism facilities
[Asahiyama Zoo]
  • About 35 minutes by car from the Arashiyama District, about 55 minutes by car from the Kamuikotan District and about 35 minutes by car from the Specimen Forest District.
[Hoppo Yasoen (Northern wild plants garden)]
  • Adjacent to the Arashiyama District. About 20 minutes by car from the Kamuikotan District and the Specimen Forest District.
[Old Kamuikotan Railroad Station]
  • Adjacent to the Kamuikotan District
Management office contact details
Kamikawa Chubu District Forest Office
Information on Other Local Tourist Attractions
Official Tourist Information
- Asahikawa City website [External link]
- Asahikawa Tourist and Convention Association website [External link]
Recreation Forest Management Committee
Arashiyama & Kamui Recreation Forests Management Committee
(Secretariat: Policy Coordination Division, Asahikawa Municipal Office)
TEL : 0166-25-5358
FAX:0166-23-8217
Supporters
Other

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