Great Walks in Hiroshima

ByJustin Hanus
Aug 31, 2022

Great Walks in Hiroshima

With many accessible mountains and gorges and the Seto Inland Sea as a stunning backdrop, Hiroshima prefecture offers excellent walking routes suitable for all abilities, from those who want a leisurely 2km stroll to seasoned hikers looking to scale summits. In fact, there are over 70 listed trails across the prefecture. Here are a few choices to get you started.

Mount Misen Trails

Located on Miyajima Island, Mt. Misen is a hiking hotspot in Hiroshima, with its 535-meter peak not beyond the realms of most fit walkers. Three trails take you past forests, wildlife including monkeys and deer, shrines, statues, and the Reikado spiritual flame, which according to legend, has been burning for 1,000 years. The Daisho-in trail is the shortest of the three (5.6km), taking you up steps to the summit. The forested Momijidani trail is the longest at 8.2km, while the Omoto trail (7.9km) takes in parks and ravines. You can also do a loop route that is just over 6km. All routes should take between 2-3 hours, and there is a ropeway to the summit should you start to tire. Miyajima is easy to reach from the Hiroshima mainland, just a 10-minute ferry ride from Motoyasubashi Pier.

Sandankyo Gorge to Akiota Town

This slightly hidden gem takes you along a 16km ravine northwest of Hiroshima prefecture. Sandankyo Gorge is considered one of Japan’s most scenic spots. The trail takes you along a concrete path that takes about 5 hours if you travel all the way to Akiota Town at the end. Otherwise, there are plenty of stop-off locations, including Kurobuchi at around 3km, where you can hop on a boat and admire the surrounding cliffs. The walk is suitable for intermediate trekkers and is a mixture of flat and hilly. On the route, you can marvel at the crystal-clear waters, calm rock pools, and cascading waterfalls, including the spectacular Sandan-daki 3-tier waterfall. For those with smartphones, there are QR codes along the way that give you information about the trail. It’s a great walk to try in the autumn as the leaves turn golden. You can reach the gorge by bus from Hiroshima station. The journey takes around 80 minutes. There are shops and a bathroom at the trail entrance, so you can sort yourself out with provisions before you start.


Mount Noro

This mountain on the edge of Kure City is a more challenging trek than Mt. Misen. It has a peak of 839 meters which makes it the second-highest mountain in the Seto Inland Sea National Park after Mount Rokko. The trail starts with a steep climb close to JR Akikawajiri station, and then you join the Iwakai trail, where you can enjoy stunning views of the surrounding Seto Inland Sea. The entire route is just over 12km and takes around 5 hours. It has everything in streams, shrines, temples, and a paved boardwalk.

Peace Pagoda Walk

This shorter, simpler walk takes you from the Toshugu shrine, about 10 minutes from Hiroshima station, to the silver Peace Pagoda at the top of the 139-meter Mount Futaba. The walk is split into an initial section with some steps that take you through a tunnel of torii gates followed by a small forest trail with a few short detours where you can take in the cityscape. At the summit, you will find the pagoda, a dome-shaped Buddhist stupa containing thousands of stones commemorating victims of the 1945 bombing. From bottom to top, it takes less than an hour.


This small island features a 4km loop walk that takes in its circumference, so it’s a great relaxing coastal walk that takes around one hour. The island is commonly known as “rabbit island” due to the nearly 1,000 rabbits that live there and can be seen gathered at various points, making many a photo opportunity. Also on the island are a visitor center, shops, a campsite, and a museum where you can learn about the history of poison gas production on the island. You can reach Okunoshima by ferry from the mainland.

Jdlrobson, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

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