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Kawazu Nanadaru in Izu

Seven Waterfalls hidden in the mountains

Japan is not all about high-rise buildings and flashy neon lights, that's what I have come to know. Just a few hours ride from the bustling hyper-cities lie the real treasures of this country, tucked away in nature's safe abode.

One such amazing spot is the Kawazu Nanadaru (Seven Waterfalls) hidden in the mountains above the small town of Kawazu in southeastern Izu (100km southwest of Tokyo). As we (me and hubby) found out on our recent trip, the place does have a unique charm to it.

The Nanadaru can be conveniently reached by a 20-25 min bus ride straight from the Kawazu station (along the Izukyu train line), and there are actually two bus-stops for the spot, the former 'Kawazu Nanadaru' at the base (before the big spiral loop bridge) and the latter 'Mizudare' (after the big spiral loop bridge) atop the walking trail connecting these falls. We chose to alight at the second stop and walk the way downhill, meandering through the woods and waterfalls.

As soon as we entered the trail, we were welcomed by an amazing view which reminded me of the poem 'The Road not Taken' by Robert Frost, but thankfully unlike the underlying confusion in the poem, we were happy to find many signboards conveniently placed all through the trail pointing out the hidden locations of the waterfalls.

For the first waterfall, we had to walk down a series of steps, safely bound by log-fences, taking us closer and closer to the mighty falls. There were strategically marked points to take the best shot of and in front of all the falls, which range from the 30-meter ‘Odaru’ (Big Waterfall) to the 2-meter ‘Kanidaru’ (Crab waterfall).

The whole length of walking trail (about 1km) felt quite adventurous and serene too. There were many statues depicting the heroine of the short story 'Izu no Odoriko’ (The Izu Dancer), one of the many stories written by famous Nobel Laureate Kawabata Yasunari. There were few places to sit and rest towards the end of the trail, but finally at the base there is the Nanadaru Onsen for those who want to soak in some steamy delight. And let me tell you, Kawazu Nanadaru is just the perfect treat for aspiring nature photographers!

So, friends, if you are heading towards Izu anytime, make sure to check out this awesome place. I am sure you will be rewarded with a well-spent tranquil afternoon drinking in the joy of these gorgeous waterfalls amidst the beautiful dense woods!


P.S. It's always better to have a weather check for the trip, as this place in the woods can get really slippery during the rains. In such inclement conditions a few sections of the trail may be prohibited for the safety of the visitors.

More info

Find out more about Kawazu Seven Waterfalls (Nanaderu).

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Nicole Bauer 10 years ago
I have just come back from a trip to Izu and the falls were wonderful! We were not able to go down to O-daru (the fall with the highest drop), as the path was damaged during the winter and they still had not opened it again. However, it didn't matter, enough other waterfalls to enjoy! Highly recommended. I have taken some more pictures, so if you want, have a look:
Varsha Vaswati Author 12 years ago
@Maryintokyo : Thank you so much for ur time and this important information.We had been to Kawazu in October last year and though it had rained the previous day all except the last waterfall were open to visitors.I hope u can get to all 7 and enjoy ur trip to the maximum ! Have a great day ! Cheers !
Varsha Vaswati Author 12 years ago
@Wouter : Thank you so much for taking ur time to go through the article and sharing ur thoughts.It is really encouraging ! Well,back home in India,and specially my native place in Odisha,there are many gorgeous waterfalls and many hidden treasures of nature to explore and maybe that makes me eager to find these beauties here in Japan too.I love that the Japanese countryside has so much to offer and is so different than the busy cities.
I’m so happy to know that you would be checking out Kawazu and the onsen.Up near the spot they do have just a small restaurant and i loved the local Bara soft cone (Rose-flavoured) :) And there are many orange trees on way and a few spots where you could go fruit-picking too :) Hope u enjoy ur trip ! Thanks so much ! Cheers !
maryintokyo 12 years ago
I read that several of the waterfalls have been closed to the public since the beginning of the year. When did you go? Were you able to see them all? I'm going to Kawazu tomorrow and hope I can get to all 7!!
Wouter Thielen 12 years ago
Nicely written article! I am very fond of nature too, and waterfalls is one of the many things we don't see back in my home country (the Netherlands). I guess I will plan a trip to Kawazu and see the waterfalls, and then soak in the onsen. Do they also have nice local food there?

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