The National Mountain Day Oita 2020



Convention period

August 10th (Mon., holiday) to 12th (Wed.), 2020


Kokonoe, Taketa, and Beppu in Oita Prefecture

Overview of events

Welcoming reception Time and date: the afternoon of August 10th (Mon., holiday), 2020
Venue location: Beppu
Commemorative ceremonies Time and date: the morning of August 11th (Tue.), 2020
Venue location: Kokonoe
Details: commemorative ceremony, commemorative events, etc.
Welcome festival Date and time: all day August 11th (Tue.), 2020
Venue location: Kokonoe
Excursion Date and time: afternoon of August 11th (Tue.) to August 12th (Wed.)
Location: Kokonoe and Taketa
Related events Date and time: spring to fall 2020
Place: cities and towns within the prefecture

Promotion system

Event holders: the Fifth Annual National Mountain Day Commemorative Convention Committee

The National Mountain Day Commemorative Convention unified logo

A realization of various “connections between mountains and people” as proposed by children.

The 5th National Ceremony for Mountain Day in Oita 2020 Ceremony abstract

We have been in awe of the mountains since ancient times, and we have been simultaneously grateful of the blessings from the forest and lived side by side with its nature.
The blessing of the mountains have created clear streams which trickled down to the sea as it enriched the farms. It has been deeply involved with the daily lives of the people and it has nurtured a rich soul in the people.

In 2020, the 5th National Ceremony that Celebrates “Mountain Day” will be held in Kokonoe in Oita and the Kuju Mountains in Taketa.
The Kuju Mountains which is the highest mountains in mainland Kyushu is located in the “Aso-Kuju National Park” and its huge grassy plain view has been maintained thanks to the local people’s continued efforts of open burning, grazing, and grass sampling.
Additionally, the “Kuju Bogatsuru and Tadewara-shitsugen (Tadewara Wetlands)” which is registered as one of the Ramsar Wetlands is also spread across this area.

This Prefecture is rich in hot spring resources and it is the best in Japan in terms of the number of hot spring sources, the amount of hot spring water, and geothermal power. The hot springs in Oita is undoubtedly at the heart of the gifts from the mountains in Oita.

We would like to make this ceremony as a way to spread the information of the charm of the mountains, people’s way of life which supports these mountains and the gifts from the mountains. We also want people to feel what it means to be Oita.

The charm of the mountains and nature of Oita
An introduction to the venue, the Kuju mountain range

The Kuju mountain range, found in Aso-Kuju National Park, will be the stage for the tournament, and they are indeed one of the finest mountain ranges in Kyushu.
The range contains 8 mountains over 1,700m in elevation, including the largest mountain in all of Kyushu (Mt. Nakadake [1,791m]), earning it the nickname ‘the roof of Kyushu’. Many people come and visit the range to go hiking & mountain climbing.

Spring sees the blooming of charming alpine plants; in early summer the mountain’s surface is coated pink with rhododendrons; autumn brings about those familiar reds & yellows; and winter coats the trees with frost.
The beautiful scenery on display changes constantly from season to season, so there’s never a shortage of things to see. The charm of the area’s nature has convinced countless people to come and live in the area.

Plus, you can’t talk about Oita without mentioning hot springs.
Numerous first-class natural hot springs can be found around the Kuju mountain range, so travelers have plenty of places to soothe their tired bodies.

Enjoying the mountains of Oita
(Mountain Climbing)

Kuju mountain range

  • local_offerKuju in spring to early summer
    Come see the charming flowers and walk the mountain trails

    After the controlled field burns in early spring, one by one flowers pop out from the ground to bring colour to the blackened earth. From spring to early summer, a number of charming flowers can be found brightening the landscape, including violas (April), primroses (May) and redvein enkianthus (May). Then, moving into early summer the mountains’ surfaces become coated pink by the blooming of rhododendrons (June). The breadth of the change that can be observed in the mountains’ scenery in just a short space of time is one of the area’s great charms, and rhododendron season in particular brings a large number of tourists from all around.

  • local_offerKuju in summer
    Feel the refreshing mountain breeze and explore the wetlands

    Kuju Bogatsuru and Tadewara-shitsugen are two areas of international importance designated by the Ramsar Convention as wetlands that must be preserved. In summer, the wetlands’ surface is coated in a beautiful green, and a refreshing breeze blows through the area. The area around Tadewara-shitsugen features a walking course that can be traversed in about an hour. Strolling through the wetlands will give you the chance to see rare flowers such as globe thistles, and walk between mongolian oak and beech trees. Kuju in summer is the perfect place to enjoy some lighthearted mountain trekking amongst gorgeous scenery, even for those with very little experience in the hobby.

  • local_offerKuju in autumn
    Enjoy the beautiful colours of autumn

    The autumn leaves are always the highlight of the fall season. There are no shortage of sights to enjoy in the fall, from the picturesque scenery of Shindou falls from atop the Kokonoe Yume Suspension Bridge, to the base of Mt. Taisen, and the autumn trees reflecting on the surface of Lake Miike. The red tree leaves and the golden grass colouring the mountainside are a must-see. Many hikers pass through the mountains of Kuju to enjoy the sights in autumn, so the area is always lively at this time of year. Autumn also sees many campers visiting the area’s campsites to relax and make the most of the cooler climate before it gets too cold in the winter.

  • local_offerKuju in winter
    Take a walk through Kyushu’s scenic snowy scenery

    Winter brings a beautiful winter wonderland to the mountains of Kuju. The snowy scenery on show makes it hard to believe you’re still in Kyushu. Plenty of hikers can be found along the range at this time of year, enjoying the snow-covered mountains. The wondrous sights of the frost-tipped trees and the frozen-over Lake Miike are experiences you’ll only find in the winter. And what better to cap off a spot of hiking than a trip to the hot spring? You can enjoy the warm waters to your heart’s content as they gently heat your frozen body up right through to the core. Winter in Kuju lets us enjoy the two faces of the mountains, the biting cold and the soothing heat.

Other Mesmerizing Mountains

  • placeMount Yufu

    Mount Yufu is a 5,200ft tall active volcano located in one of Kyushu’s top tourist destinations, “Yufuin.” Its beautiful shape is the source of its other name “Bungo’s Fuji.” It has two peaks, one to the west and one to the east, and the “crater walk” that links the two should not be missed. Nestled in at the foot of the mountain, the area around Yufuin station is full of souvenir stores, hot springs and places to eat and drink, making it a great destination for a mix of mountain climbing and sightseeing.

  • placeTsue Sanzan

    “Tsue Sanzan” (three mountains of tsue) is the collective name for the three mountains called “Mount Shakaga,” “Mount Gozen” and “Mount Togami” in Hita city, Oita. These mountains are home to a number of gods that appear in Japanese mythology, and have long been subjects of worship by the local people. At the base of the mountains you will find the “Shioji Primeval Forest,” one of the best examples of primeval forests in western Japan, where you can enjoy the beauty of an unspoiled forest.

  • placeMount Sobo

    “Mount Sobo” is a 5,800ft tall mountain on the border between Oita and Miyazaki. It is considered one of “Japan’s 100 famous mountains,” and along with Mount Kuju is one of Oita’s most famous peaks. In contrast to Kuju’s relaxing feel Sobo has steep routes and pristine primeval forests, making it a favorite of skilled climbers.

  • placeMount Futago

    Mount Futago (2,400ft) on the Kunisaki Peninsula in Oita is at the center of a huge number of Buddhist temples which are collectively known as “Rokugo Manzan” (six district mountains). Even now the area is home to a syncretized religion that combines Shinto and Buddhism, and the cliffs in the area are covered in carvings of Buddha carved by pilgrims through the ages. As you walk through the beautiful mountains and villages you will be able to see a unique religion that has survived since ancient times and have a truly cultural mountain climbing experience.

Fun in the Oita Mountains

  • thumb_up_altCamping

    Enjoy camping in a beautiful landscape, surrounded by the mountains and the sky

    There are many campsites around the Kuju area. The area has many unique features, from the auto-campsites with their many facilities to make camping a comfortable experience to campsites nestled deep in the mountains where you can be surrounded by the majestic landscape of the area. The beauty of the mountainsides bathed in morning or evening light, and the unmatched beauty of the starry night sky are vistas that can only be experienced by spending the night in the mountains. Many of the campsites offer equipment to rent, so even beginners can have a go.

  • thumb_up_altFun in the River

    Having fun in the beautiful rivers

    Between Oita’s mountains you can find countless beautiful rivers. The Kuju area in particular is popular with families in the summer who come to enjoy the “Ryumon Waterfall,” a natural waterslide made out of a waterfall, and the Masu Salmon and Char fishing pond, which is formed from clear spring water. The rivers that wind between the mountains are yet another aspect of the beauty of this mountainous region. Spending a long summer’s day in the beautiful clear water that’s full of healthy negative ions will make for memories that will last a lifetime.

  • thumb_up_altSkiing

    Glide through Kyushu’s beloved silver snow fields

    Kyushu may not seem like the obvious choice for skiing, but in the Kuju mountain range, known as the “roof of Kyushu,” you will find “Kuju Forest Park Skiing Ground,” Kyushu’s highest ski resort at over 9,000ft above sea level. It is a major attraction for skiers in the winter. They offer lessons and equipment rental, so it is perfect for beginners as well.

  • thumb_up_altFestivals

    Feel the rhythm of nature, surrounded by the mountains

    The expansive natural beauty of Kuju, with its imposing mountains and big skies, can really stir up people’s spirits. So, it’s no wonder that recently a wide range of festivals have sprung up in the area, like the “TAO summer festival,” “Kuju festival” and “CALLING MOUNTAIN,” which attract huge numbers of people. Let the music reverberate off the mountains and wash over you, as you feel the refreshing breeze on your face. This is a new, but still very important part of the culture of Kuju.

Soak in the Oita Mountains

  • starsOnsen

    Take in the power of the region’s active volcanoes

    The Kuju range is home to a number of active volcanoes, which of course means it also has many famous hot spring resorts, such as “Chojabaru Onsen,” “Sujiyu Onsen” and “Nagayu Onsen.” Oita prefecture has more hot springs that produce more spring water than any other prefecture in Japan, giving it the title of “hot spring prefecture.” If you want to experience true Oita life, try out all the different kinds of hot spring it has to offer. After mountain climbing or engaging in outdoor pursuits in Kuju, it’s common knowledge among Kuju aficionados that there’s no better way to end the day than in an onsen. An onsen visit should be on the itinerary of anyone visiting the Kuju area.

  • starsFine Dining

    Try the bounties of the mountains

    Another attraction of the Kuju region is the abundance of delicious produce grown in the areas beautiful natural landscape. “Bungo” beef and dairy products from cattle lovingly reared on local farms, mushrooms from the thick forests, Masu Salmon and Char that thrives in the clean water, vegetables with a great flavor that comes from the rich soil. The foothills of the Kuju mountain range are full of shops and restaurants which use these local ingredients in delicious recipes, and they will often be full of tourists from within and without the prefecture on holidays.

  • starsCulture

    Experience traditional crafts developed in the mountains

    Taketa city, located in the foothills of the Kuju mountain range, is home to an abundance of local culture, and is where many local crafts come from. It’s a region where traditions have thrived even into the 21st Century, and where you can still find craftsmen making the lovely smiling “hime daruma” dolls, the simple but deceptively intricate “takezaiku” bamboo work, and the natural dyes used in “somemono” dyed fabrics. There are many traditional crafts in the area that have developed over the centuries of people living in the area. This is another treasure hidden here in the mountains.