Venture to the ’Roof of Japan’ for Magnificent Views of the Glorious Japanese Alps!

  • SPOT
  • Love adventure and the outdoors? There is a famous mountain sightseeing route called the Tateyama Kurobe Alpine Route, which lies between Tateyama, Toyama, and Omachi, Nagano. It has been carefully built in order to protect its natural surroundings and is 37 meters in length. The route is also referred to as the “Roof of Japan” due to the dynamic scenery and panoramic views that it presents of the Japanese Alps.


    In the past, many people believed that a god lived on Mt. Tateyama and therefore, it was included as one of Japan’s three holy mountains in the 17th and 19th centuries and was often visited by pilgrims. However, due to its unusual volcanic landscape, many people also compare the place to hell; with Jigokudani often being referred to as the underworld because of the hot water that can be seen rising from it. On the other hand, heaven is considered to be at the highest point of the mountain which many people climb to hoping they will receive eternal salvation and go to heaven once they die.

    The Route

    The Alpine Route uses seven different public means of transport with five modes including funicular (cliff railway), bus, trolleybus, aerial tramway or simply walking. Some lines were built under tunnels such as the two of the trolley buses to provide some protection from the snow. The route passes through Tateyama in the Hida Mountains and stretches through Nagano, Toyama, and Gifu and includes a variable radius arch dam known as Kurobe Dam. There are several stations along the way which also have hotels nearby for travelers that want to use them as a pitstop for hiking or mountain climbing adventures.

    The entire route can be completed in a day. However, if you’re wanting to do a bit more exploring, then it can be extended to two days or more. In order to find the Alpine Route, you will need to head to the border between Toyama and Nagano Prefectures and from there, it can be accessed from any of the major cities.

    Be sure to check out the panoramic and impressive views that the Tateyama Kurobe Alpine Route has to offer anytime between April 16 to November 30, 2016.

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