Gunma is one of Japan's handful of landlocked prefectures, and it's known for its onsen, ski resorts, and pristine nature. It's also a destination which is filled with some great spots to enjoy the changing leaves of fall, and list list covers five of them!
Oze National Park
If hiking is your preferred method of appreciating autumn's beauty, the Oze National Park needs to be on your must-visit list. The iconic autumn view here is of the grass turning shades of yellow and brown by the Ozegahara Marshland, and there are risen boardwalks along the route making it easy to trek along. Come wintertime, this area is typically blanketed in snow and rarely visited until spring arrives again.
Katashina, Tone District, Gunma 378-0411
Gunma is known for its onsen, and Kusatsu Onsen gets touted as one of Japan's best. The waters here are said to assist with a range of ailments from muscle pain to skin issues, and the town itself is filled with plenty of atmospheric alleyways to explore. The charm is really emphasized when the crisp autumn air and vibrant leaves are added to the equation!
Kusatsu, Agatsuma District, Gunma
Another great autumnal onsen option is Takaragawa, and when online reviews offer glowing statements like "hands down the most beautiful scenery for an onsen experience" you know you're onto a good thing. The onsen is surrounded by trees, meaning that when the leaves begin to change you're greeted with a bounty of color while you bathe. It's equally as charming during the winter months when the area is covered in snow.
1899 Fujiwara, Minakami, Tone District, Gunma 379-1721
Myogi Jinja Shrine
Located on one of Gunma's most important mountains, Myogi Jinja Shrine has a history dating back to 537 AD. Getting there requires a trek up almost 300 stairs, but once get there you're rewarded with some beautiful autumn foliage that quickly makes you forget about the leg workout. If you can't visit during the fall season, the shrine is also popular in spring when the cherry blossoms are in bloom.
6 Myougi, Myougimachi, Tomioka, Gunma, 379-0201
If you'd like to appreciate the autumn leaves from a higher vantage point, the Tanigawadake Ropeway is the spot for you. A round trip will set you back ¥ 2100, and it'll have you feeling like you're soaring through the colorful trees. The ropeway runs in all seasons, so even if you can't visit in autumn it's a fun activity where you can enjoy the beauty of nature from above.
Fukiyama National Forest, Yubiso, Minakami, Tone District, Gunma 379-1728