Mount Asama, Kanbara, Tsumagoi, Japan (with Map & Photos)

Smoke often rises above the restless 2,568-metre-high Mount Asama. This active volcano last erupted in 2019, but has since calmed down. Visit the mountain with a guided tour and see the Northern Japanese Alps from a different perspective.

Mount Asama
Mount Asama

How to get there

Mount Asama can be reached by bus.

From Karuizawa, the Shinano Tetsudo Line goes to Komoro Station. The trip will take about 25 minutes. From there, the bus goes to Takamine Kogen Onsen, where the hiking trail begins.

Mount Asama
Mount Asama

Walk through Oniosidasi Park

Lava flows from the 1783 eruption created the surreal landscapes of Onyoshidashi Park (Gumma Prefecture). Here you will see a chaotic mass of jagged volcanic formations, through which vegetation breaks from time to time. Many hiking trails with great views of Asama make the park a great place to start exploring the mountain. Here is the Asamayama Kannon-do Temple, dedicated to the Buddhist goddess of mercy. It was built in memory of those who died as a result of a monstrous eruption.

If you want to get an idea of ​​the geological activity in the area, we recommend visiting the Asama Volcano Museum.

Stunning view from the top

From the beginning of the trail in Takamine Kogen Onsen, it takes about three and a half hours to go to the top. It can be handled by people with intermediate training, although there are some steep sections on the trail. The route passes through a dense forest and then rises above the tree line into a mountainous volcanic realm. It offers fantastic views of the Northern Japanese Alps, the Yatsugatake Mountains, and more. The path ends near the top of the mountain. The approaches to the smoking crater are cordoned off to prevent tourists from getting too close.

Tips and Cautions

At the time of this writing, Mount Asama was under a Level 2 Alert from the Japan Meteorological Agency. This means that "caution is advised near the crater." Please check weather conditions before setting off. Take a map with you. Warm and waterproof clothing can come in handy even in summer: the weather in the mountains can change in the blink of an eye.

Hot spring after climbing

Be sure to check the return bus schedule. If possible, after climbing, visit Takamine Kogen Onsen and relax in a hot mineral water bath at an altitude of 2000 meters, breathing in the pure mountain air.

Mount Asama Map