Fall for Nagoya; What to do in Autumn near Nagoya

ByBert Wishart
Sep 28, 2021

Fall for Nagoya; What to do in Autumn near Nagoya

Can you feel that? That feeling that a weight has lifted from your shoulders? That’s right, the oppressive Japanese summer has gone, and autumn is finally with us. The fall is widely said to be Japan’s favorite season, as not only is it that brief respite between the crushing heat of the summer and winter’s icy grip, but it is also a time when the trees turn all manner of gorgeous colors and some of the best food can be had.

So, do you have any plans for this autumn? If not, how about these great autumnal things to do.

Fall leaves viewing

Viewing the changing colors of autumn leaves, which is called either koyo or momoji depending on the type of tree viewed, is fall’s answer to the more famous cherry blossom viewing of spring. It is a traditional chance to get outdoors to live in the moment of the season and to reflect on the impermanence of life, and in Aichi, the most famous place to do just that is Korankei Gorge in Asuke City, near Toyota City.

Korankei is a beautiful ravine that connects the Tomoe River and the Iimori Mountains. Its 4,000 maple trees, reportedly planted by local monks, explode with vibrant red, yellow, and orange leaves every fall and brings throngs of families and couples to this small town during the season. Korankei’s maples begin to turn in October but usually reach full color in early to mid-November. From November 1, the trees are lit from below, giving the area a mystical atmosphere. Many of Korankei’s 4000 maples remain “illuminated” the entire month of November, daily from sunset until 9 pm.

Where: Iimori Asukecho, Toyota (map)

Read a whole article about Korankei Gorge here

See a ball game

The soccer (ahem, football) season in Japan comes to a close on December 4, which means that throughout the autumn, the J-League is getting to the sharp end, and things are really starting to heat up. Not only is the local team, Nagoya Grampus, currently excelling in the Asia Champions League (at the time of writing), but they are also riding high in the J-League as things start to come to a crunch.

Whether you are a soccer fan or not, a trip to Grampus’ home ground, Toyota Stadium, makes for a cracking day out. The supporters get behind their team, especially ‘The Red Wall’* where fans, led by megaphone-toting chant coordinators, sing and cheer throughout the game in a way reminiscent of Italian’ ultras.’ Furthermore, unlike with Italian ultras, you get none of the hooliganism at Grampus that you might expect in other counties, so it’s child-friendly, and you see loads of families. A word of advice: get there early as seats aren’t designated, and turning up less than half an hour early means you’ll be sitting up in the gods. Oh, and make sure that you go to the right stadium, as occasionally they play at Paloma Mizuho Stadium in Nagoya’s Mizuho Ward.

Where: Toyota, Sengokucho, 7 Chome−2 (map)
Website: toyota-stadium.co.jp

*They don’t call it that, but they should!

Persimmon picking

Perhaps my favorite thing about Japan in autumn is the abundance of persimmon fruit. At this time of the year it seems the countryside explodes with orange as the ‘kaki’ (said with a rising intonation, as to do otherwise means ‘oyster’ and you don’t want to confuse the two) trees bear fruit. The best part of this explosion is that someone in pretty much every office has a tree or two at home, and brings in boxes of the beautiful stuff.

But even if no one does – or even if they do, but you want to get in on the action yourself – you should get out there and get picking. There are numerous farms around Aichi, such as Ishimaki Tourist Park in Toyohashi, at which you can roam the fields, climb the trees and pick persimmon. It is a very popular pastime for both families and couples.

Explore Nagoya

With sunny days uninterrupted by rain but cool enough that doing light exercise doesn’t turn the humid air into soup, autumn is the best time to go for a ride or stroll in the city. There are some beautiful rides around Aichi, some of which you can find here. My favorite is a 90km circuit from Nagoya to Inuyama and back to Nagoya along the Kiso River, which is beautiful when all the trees turn gold and red.

Or if you want to discover Nagoya a bit better, how about a 30km loop around the city that takes in all the big sites? Want to see Nagoya Castle, Atsuta Jingu, and Higashiyama Zoo while discovering some great local food? Click the link here, and you can do just that. But what’s that, you don’t have a decent bike? Well, don’t worry, JIS has you covered with a list of Nagoya’s best bicycle shops. But if walking is more your thing, check out one of Nagoya International Center’s walking guides. When I first came to Nagoya, I found them great for discovering the city, and you can too.

Image: By L’ombre via flickr.com [CC BY-NC 2.0] – Modified
Image: By Jeff Boyd via flickr.com [CC BY-NC 2.0] – Modified
Image: By Mark Guthrie – Own work
Image: By jun.skywalker (enishi hand made cyclecap) via flickr.com [CC BY 2.0]
Image: By Emran Kassim via flickr.com [CC BY-NC 2.0] – Modified

About the author

Bert Wishart editor

Novelist, copywriter and graduate from the most prestigious university in Sunderland, Bert whiles away his precious time on this Earth by writing about popular culture, travel, food and pretty much anything else that is likely to win him the Pulitzer he desperately craves.

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