The Akame ravine, in Mie Prefecture, is the historical training ground of Iga style Ninja and home to the Akame 48 waterfalls. Visitors can experience ninja training courses in the natural environment of the forests and waterfalls of the ancient Iga clan. Historically, ninja trained in this area were often used for intelligence activities from the 15th to 18th century, when Akame was part of a country called Iga. Iga required stealth forces trained in espionage, infiltration and assassination to maintain their independence during the warring states period. Today, visitors can become shinobi themselves in full ninja costume. The course is designed for adults or children and instructors will demonstrate and train participants in mental concentration, climbing, intrusion, balance, vanishing, weapons and more.
Once the course is over, keep your costumes on and explore the nearby ninja forest and Akame 48 waterfalls path. The Akame 48 waterfalls are a collective name for a string of waterfalls flowing through Nabari in Mie Prefecture. Among them, five large falls, "Fudo", "Senju", "Nunobiki", "Ninai" and "Biwa" are are known as "The Akame Five Waterfalls". A recreational hiking path of four kilometers winds along the waterfalls where travelers can search for giant salamanders and enjoy the peaceful sound of the waterfalls. The path is famous during each season, from cherry blossoms in the spring, vibrant greens in early summer, colored leaves in autumn and frozen falls in the winter.
If you are looking for a weekend or overnight trip to explore the region, I recommend the Sasayuri-ann mountain lodging nearby. The owner is a Shugendo Monk well acquainted with the waterfalls and mountains and will freely take his guests to the ninja village and waterfall area teaching them about the history and surroundings in English or Japanese.