Mountain Day is a brand new national holiday that began being celebrated two years ago in 2016. Like Marine Day, Mountain Day reminds us to express our gratitude and recognize the importance of the mountains to Japan, a nation that is approximately 73 percent mountainous. It’s a perfect opportunity to take the family out hiking or if that’s a little bit too ambitious, to a nearby park to enjoy some nature.
“Why August 11th?” you might ask. It’s really quite simple:
1. There is no public holiday in August and
2. The kanji for eight 八 looks a little like a mountain and “11” looks a little like two standing trees. As such, it was decided that Mountain Day will be celebrated every year on August 11th, which is perfect because in this heat, we’d all love to escape to the mountain for its cool fresh air.
Here are some family-friendly mountains to hike that are just a day trip from Tokyo:
Access: Keio Takao Line Takaosanguchi Station
Mt.Takao is a great hiking spot for families as it is easy to access, full of route options and offers various attractions such as restaurants, temples, and even a monkey park. While you can easily lose yourself in the lush greens and trickling streams on Mt.Takao, the mountain is only 50 minutes away on the Keio Takao Line from Shinjuku and since Takaosanguchi is the last stop, you don’t have to worry about missing it! There are also plenty of restaurants and eateries at the summit to reward your family for their hard work with traditional Japanese snacks like skewered sesame mochi, a bowl of soba, matcha soft cream and other snacks only available on Mt.Takao. It is welcoming to families with children of all ages as the mountain offers a cable car or lift option in addition to the seven well-marked official courses.
For more information: https://www.japan-guide.com/e/e3029.html
Access: JR Ome Line Mitake Station → Nishi-Tokyo Bus to Cable-Shita Stop
Mt.Mitake is one of the most well-known hiking spots in the vast Chichibu-Tama-Kai National Park which expands over Yamanashi, Saitama, Nagano and Tokyo prefectures. While the mountain is not as easily accessible as Mt.Takao, it is definitely less commercialized. With a popular shrine, waterfalls, a small traditional village, and the famous “Rock Garden”, Mt.Mitake offers a hiking experience unique to Japanese mountains. For families with small children, we suggest you take the cable car from the Cable-Shita bus stop.
For more information: https://www.japan-guide.com/e/e3036.html
If climbing a mountain seems a little too ambitious for your family, check one of these great parks in the city:
Access: Tokyu Oimachi Line Todoroki Station
Access: Keio Inokashira Line/JR Sobu & Chuo Lines Kichijoji Station
Access: JR Chuo Line Tachikawa Station/JR Ome Line Nishi-Tachikawa Station
If it all seems a little bit too ambitious for your family, why not bring extra help? At CareFinder, we are committed to meeting all of your babysitting needs whether you are looking for just an evening babysitter, an international babysitter, a hotel babysitter, a weekend babysitter, an overnight babysitter, a great au pair or a summer babysitter. Find a babysitter on CareFinder to come hiking with you and your family so that you too can get the de-stressing benefits of the fresh mountain air!