Welcome to Hokuto’s new magazine-style, English-language web site for tourists and visitors, which we launched in spring 2016. Information and features on the new site will grow over time, and we hope it will prove useful for anyone who wishes to learn about Hokuto’s attractions and facilities. Hokuto’s close proximity to Tokyo makes it a very popular destination for both casual hikers and serious mountaineers alike, and its unique high-altitude spots offer a superb escape from the summer heat of the Kanto region in particular. Our northwestern corner of Yamanashi Prefecture has appeal in all four seasons though, from snow sports, cherry blossoms and art galleries, to autumn colors, golf and hot-springs.
One of the main concepts behind the new web site is to introduce Hokuto to visitors from the perspective of someone who is not originally from Japan. My name is Stephen Walker and I will be the site’s editor and feature writer. I was born and raised in Auckland, New Zealand, but have lived in Japan off and on for the past three decades. Although I have spent the greatest part of that time in Tokyo, I have traveled extensively in Japan and have lived in the Mt. Yatsugatake area for the past three-and-a-half years. I am looking forward to writing about many of Hokuto’s interesting and beautiful spots—both well-known ones and some that are off the beaten track. In addition to the city’s famed mountain scenery, there are locations of archeological and geological interest, places with historical backstories, artisans, many types of agriculture, traditional architecture and arts, and a wonderful selection of restaurants and accommodation. Our first-up feature is on the Masutomi hot spring area, which is unique among Japan’s thousands of natural spas.
Over the course of the coming months we plan to gradually increase the content on the new site by publishing more special features, seasonal columns and information on events. We also hope to focus on people and places of interest to overseas visitors. Of course we also want to offer practical information for visitors, including accommodation, eating and drinking establishments, and both outdoor and indoor activities. We value the feedback of our readers and want to build an interactive relationship as the site takes shape. If you have any particular questions, article suggestions or ideas you wish to share with us, please take the time to contact us using the feedback form provided.
While Snow Still Covers High Mountain Peaks, Cherry Blossoms Come into Full Bloom
Special Issue 01
Our first-up feature is on the Masutomi hot spring area
YATSUGATAKE vs. Mt. FUJI
The Yatsugatake were once taller than Mt. Fuji!?
Our northwestern corner of Yamanashi Prefecture has appeal in all four seasons though, from snow sports, cherry blossoms and art galleries, to autumn colors, golf and hot-springs.