Irohazaka

Irohazaka

The 48 hairpin turns of Irohazaka is Japan's ultimate drive.

 If you fancy a motoring challenge, you must try Irohazaka - a pair of staggeringly scenic roads each with 48 hairpin bends. Built in 1954 and 1965 the roads connect the UNESCO temples of Nikko with the higher plateau of Lake Chuzenji and Nikko National Park. One road is for upwards traffic, while the other is for vehicles travelling back down.

The number of bends, 48, also corresponds with the number of syllables in Japanese - and the name i-ro-ha refers to the first three sounds in the old Japanese alphabet system while zaka means slope.

The road is particularly beautiful from late October to early November when the autumn colours appear. This does make it an extremely popular drive at this time of year and there can be long traffic queues so InsideJapan's top tip is to avoid national holidays and weekends in October and November, and to set off as early as possible in the morning.

Irohazaka

located in Nikko

Read more >

Interested in this Experience? It is included in this tour:

  • Seen one of our trips, but it's not enough? Extend your stay in Japan and strike north to explore Japan's least visited region.

    Tohoku Five-night Group Tour Add-On

    Take a step into Japan's hidden past as you explore the northern Tohoku region, an area often overlooked by travellers lured west to Tokyo and Kyoto. This trip is an ideal add-on to one of our Small Group Tours, allowing you to see more of Japan, and delay your return to work by a precious few days!

    Read more >

    Seen one of our trips, but it's not enough? Extend your stay in Japan and strike north to explore Japan's least visited region.

Other Transport experiences

View more >
  • Tateyama Kurobe Alpine Route

    Tateyama Kurobe Alpine Route

    Enjoy stunning vistas while traversing the Japanese Alps via a series of trains, cable cars, trolley buses, ropeways, tunnels and hiking routes.

    Read more >

  • Taxis

    Taxis

    Like hailing a yellow cab in NYC or hanging on for dear life in the back of a Thai tuk tuk, taking a taxi in Japan is a memorable travel experience.

    Read more >

  • Helicopter cruising in Tokyo

    Helicopter cruising in Tokyo

    There is no better way to appreciate the vastness of Tokyo than by helicopter.

    Read more >