10 Best Things to Do in Yamaguchi

Best Things to See in Yamaguchi

The westernmost of Japanese mainland, Yamaguchi prefecture is located in Chugoku region. The prefecture is full of hidden tourist attractions including gorgeous historical sites, traditional countryside, beautiful beaches, amazing landscapes and great food.

Here are most amazing things about Yamaguchi prefecture you may wanna know!

With this Chugoku Region Bucket List, let’s also check out the surrounding tourist attractions: Best Things to Do in Chugoku

1. Iwakuni Castle

During the Edo Period, Iwakuni City used to be one of the feudal domains of Japan and it has some of the most amazing historical sites to see. The Iwakuni Castle (岩国城) is one of them, located on top of the mountain which you can access by rope way and enjoy the great view looking over Iwakuni City from the top.

2. Kintaikyo Bridge

Kintaikyo Bridge (錦帯橋) is considered as one of the greatest bridges in Japan. This arch bridge was originally built in 1673. The beautifully shaped arch bridge stands across the Nishiki River and displays amazing scenery in each season. Iwakuni Castle can be seen from the bridge, and the rope-way station to the castle is situated nearby.

Iwakuni City is located in southeast of Yamaguchi pref which is only 1 hour away from Hiroshima City. If you are planning to trip to Hiroshima, why don’t you add Iwakuni city to your list?

Here is a suggested itinerary to get around Hiroshima and Yamaguchi in 3 days!

3 days itinerary in Hiroshima and Yamaguchi

3. Akiyoshidai Karst and Akiyoshido Cave

The largest karst formation in Japan, Akiyoshidai (秋吉台) and the nation’s largest and longest limestone cave, Akiyoshido (秋芳洞) are both situated in Akiyoshidai Quasi-National Park in Mine City.

If you are travelling Yamaguchi Prefecture by car, Akiyoshidai is definitely a must-visit destination as it offers a fantastic driving route passing through the karst. If you are not driving, cycling is another great option there. Hiking trails are also available.

The 100m wide 8.9km long Akiyoshido Cave is a perfect place if you are seeking to explore the natural wonder. There is a sightseeing course open for public with a walkway and bridges.

4. Tsunoshima Bridge and Tsunoshima Island

Tsunoshima Bridge (角島大橋) is one of the best scenic spots in Japan. It connects a mainland of Yamaguchi Prefecture and a small island called Tsunoshima. The bridge spans across the turquoise blueu ocean and displays astonishing scenery. Passing the bridge feels like flying above the beautiful ocean!

As well as the spectacular scenery of the bridge, the island and the surrounding area are perfect destinations for beach hunters! Lesser known , but the west side of Yamaguchi Prefecture has amazing beaches with crystal clear water and white sand. Tsunoshima Island is the best to reach by car but it is possible by public transport. Take a but towards Tsunoshima from JR Kottoi station.

5. Motonosumi Inari Shrine

Motonosumi Inari Shrine (元乃隅稲成神社) is the shrine located on the seaside cliff in Nagato City. It’s one of the most bizarre and unique, yet spectacular sights in Japan. The shrine used to be totally unknown by tourists, but has been gaining its popularity since it was featured by numbers of travel medias including CNN in recent years. The tunnel of torii gate can be actually walked through and the wonderful view with the contrast of red torii gate, greenery and the blue sky and ocean can be enjoyed!

6. Rurikoji Temple

Yamaguchi City is often described as the Kyoto of the West as it’s home to numbers of historic sites and influenced by Ouch Culture built by Ouchi Clan, one of the most powerful and important families in Western Japan from 12th to 14th centuries.

Founded in 1442 during Muromachi Period, Rurikoji Temple (瑠璃光寺) is a Buddhist temple located in Yamaguchi City. It is little known but Rurikoji Temple’s 5 storied pagoda was chosen as one of the 3 greatest Pagodas in Japan along with Horyuji Temple in Nara and Daigoji Temple in Kyoto, and it’s designated to the National Treasure. The temple site consists of the pagoda, pond, approach, inner gate and the main hall where you can visit to worship.

7. Joeiji Temple

A short drive from Rurikoji Temple, there is another great zen temple called Joeiji Temple (常栄寺) with the beautiful garden. The temple’s Sesshu Garden is named after Sesshu who is a well-known monk painter in 15th century and a very important person in Japanese art history. The master of ink and wash painting also designed several gardens including this one.

Visitors can enjoy views of the Sesshu Garden from the main hall of the temple and explore inside the building. The temple consists with stone inner garden and huge Zen garden on the backyard. There is a trail path along the pond which takes around 20 mins to walk around. Enjoy the view of the garden and temple’s main building from the other side!

8. Kawara Soba

Kawara Soba is a famous specialty from Yamaguchi Prefecture, which literally means ‘soba noodles on a hot roof tile’. This unique dish was apparently invented in 1877 when the soldiers used hot tiles to cook dishes during the battle time. The green tea sobe is served on a hot roof tile with beef, thin stripes of omelette, dried seaweed, grated daikon raddish and chili paste.

9. Puffer fish

Shimonoseki City in southwest of Yamaguchi is Japan’s biggest puffer fish harvester. In Yamaguchi Prefecture, there are many restaurants where you can try local fresh puffer fish! There are also a wide range of puffer fish flavoured or related souvenirs/snacks sold at souvenir shops.

10. Natsu Mikan

Natsu Mikan is a type of Japanese citrus fruit which is about the size of grapefruit. Natsu Mikan is cultivated in Yamaguchi Prefecture, especially in Hagi City. It’s commonly eaten fresh, but also used for a wide variety of products such as ice cream, sweets, jam, drinks, etc!

▽Check out the attractions you should experience across Japan with this Japan Bucket List!▽

▽Check more things to do in other prefectures in Chugoku Region below!▽

▶︎10 Best Things to Do in Tottori

▶︎10 Best Things to Do in Shimane

▶︎10 Best Things to Do in Okayama

▶︎10 Best Things to Do in Hiroshima

▶︎10 Best Things to Do in Yamaguchi

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"The world is my oyster" A globetrotter 🌎 and hammock lover 🌞 who loves taking adventures to fuel wanderlust. Born and raised in Japan, I have lived and explored countries around the world. As a resident of Japan and based on my travel experience, I'd love to share my knowledge and tips for travelling Japan with my readers. I hope my story will help you plan your trip and have a great time in Japan 🌈