Tsukuba area has Mount Tsukuba that is one of the great mountain in Kanto region. Tsuchiura area has Lake Kasumigaura which is the second-largest lake in Japan. Ushiku area has 120 meters Ushiku Buddha. Tsukuba, Tsuchiura and Ushiku are popular sightseeing destinations in Ibaragi Prefecture.
- 5th Raigoin, Ryugasaki
- 4th JAXA Tsukuba Space Center
- 3rd Inaba Shuzo
- 2nd Ushiku Daibutsu
- 1st Mount Tsukuba
1. Spot Ranking in Tsukuba, Tsuchiura and Ushiku area
5th. Raigoin, Ryugasaki
Raigoin is Tiantai Buddhism Temple that is located in Ryugasaki city. Raigoin’s Pagoda was built in 1556, it is the oldest pagoda in the northern Japan. Inside this Important Cultural Property registered and 13 meters pagoda, there are two statues of Prabhūtaratna and Buddha with special circular pillars right and left at each corner of the special raised altar. On 23rd of December every year, Hibuse Festival is taking place at this temple. This festival is for everyone regardless of their beliefs. People come to pray for getting rid of bad luck, great achievements and traffic safety. Its special event, Firewalking creates a quite dramatic scene at night; people would walk barefoot over a bed of hot embers in the dark.
From Mito station, take JR Jōban Line to Sanuki Station, transfer to Kantō Railway Ryūgasaki Line, get off at Ryūgasaki Station, then about 20 min walk.
4th. JAXA Tsukuba Space Center
JAXA Tsukuba Space Center was open in 1972; it is located in Tsukuba Science City. It has the area of 530’000m2; the area includes green area and research facilities. This is the headquarter of Japanese space operation. Visitors are able to enjoy their tour and exhibition area. The highlight of this facility would be Space Dome where a actual size satellite and a rocket engine are on display. Also, there is a full-sized mock-up of the Kibō module on the International Space Station. Their exhibition area Planet Cube offers seasonal exhibitions. This is a recommended place for people of all age.
The opening is Space Dome 9:30～17:00, Planet Cube is 10:00～17:00. The entrance is free but there is fee for the tour
Take TSUKUBA EXPRESS to Tsukuba station then take bus or taxi.
Kantetsu Bus towards Arakawaoki Station and get off at National Institute for Materials Science. Then 1 min walk
Or 10 min taxi ride.
3rd. Inaba Shuzo
Inaba Shuzo has been making holy sake for Tsukuba shrine since its opening. Their brewery is located near Mt. Tsukuba and its 13th owner is running the business. Their sake is made using the local spring water from Mt. Tsukuba. They also value the hand-making process and storage of sake. This results the best quality sake in Japan. This brewery has its own café where people can try out their sake and other menu. They also offer a tour of their brewery.
The opening hour is, The shop 9:00～18:00 (closed on Thursdays) , The café 10:00～17:00.
Take TSUKUBA EXPRESS to Tsukuba station, then 28 min drive by car.
2nd. Ushiku Daibutsu
Ushiku Daibutsu is on Guinness World Records as the tallest bronze statue. Its height is 120 meters; Buddha statue in Nara is 14.9 meters and the Statue of Liberty is 40 meters so comparing amongst them, people would understand how tall this statue is. Inside this statue is divided into 5 different levels. World of Gratitude and Thankfulness where 77 seats for scriptural studies are placed, is on level 2. World of the Lotus Sanctuary where 3400 samples of gold Buddha statues are placed, is on level 3. When the weather is gorgeous, visitors are able to see Mt. Fuji and Tokyo Skytree from the observation platform which is about 85 meters from the ground. It would be a very unique experience to enjoy 360 degree view from inside this huge Buddha statue.
During the month of August, Buddhist lantern festival is taking place here. This festival is for Japanese traditional costume to honor spirits of ancestors. During the festival, their flower garden is full of lanterns; this creates a very spiritual atmosphere. Ushiku Daibutsu also get a special light up during this festival. Moreover, there would be fireworks display as well.
The opening hour is 3rd month ～ 9th month (weekdays) 9:30～17:00／(weekends & holidays) 9:30～17:30, 10th month ～2nd month (weekdays)9:30～16:30／(weekends & holidays)9:30～16:30. The full access ticket: 800 yen for an adult and 400 yen for a child age 4 – 12.
Take JR Jōban Line to Ushiku station. And you can take a bus from Ushiku Station departs from Platform 2 accessible through the station’s East Exit, and takes 30-35 minutes to Ushiku-Daibutsu bus stop.
1st. Mount Tsukuba
Mount Tsukuba is at an altitude of 877 m; it changes its colour beautifully during dawn and dusk. Japanese people have been respected this mountain as much as Mt. Fuji. This mountain has two peaks: one male and one female. (This naming is due to traditional worshipping history) On its pathways, there are more than 1000 different types of plants growing. Mount Tsukuba is suitable for both hiking and climbing; there is a great variety of pathways from easy to challenging ones. There are cable car and ropeway services which run to the top of the mountain; thus everyone can enjoy the gorgeous panoramic view from there.
Take TSUKUBA EXPRESS to Tsukuba station then take Kantetsu shuttle bus service to Mount Tsukuba. (bus stop No1) about 40 min.
2. Getting to Tsukuba Station from Tokyo
From Tokyo station, a traveller can take JR Yamanote Line to Akihabara station, then take Tsukuba Express Section Rapid service to Tsukuba Station. Duration is about 1 hour. Ticket Price is 1330 yen.
3. Other Area List
Hitachinaka, Oarai and Nakaminato
Mito – Kasama
Tsukuba, Tsuchiura and Ushiku
Itako, Hokota and Kashima
Yuki and Chikusei
Fukuroda, Daigo and Hitachiota
Kitaibaraki and Hitachi