We’ve compiled the best of the best in Tohoku - browse our top choices for the top things to see or do during your stay.

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  • 1. Risshaku-ji

    Religious Building/Site/Shrine

    Yamadera is like something conjured out of the ethereal mists of an ancient Japanese charcoal painting. Built in the year AD 860, Yamadera's...Read More

  • 2. Fuku-ura Jima


    From the Godaido Temple it's a short walk across a pedestrian bridge to the islet of Fuku-ura Jima. For the ¥200 toll you can break away from...Read More

  • 3. Gas-san

    Religious Building/Site/Shrine

    Buses leave JR Tsuruoka Station at 6, 7, 10:15 and 12:46 in summer for the nearly two-hour trip (¥1,560) to the Gas-san Hachigo-me stop. From...Read More

  • 4. Godaido

    Religious Building/Site/Shrine

    Just to the right of the ferry pier in Matsu-shima is this small temple constructed in 1609 at the behest of daimyo Masamune Date. The temple...Read More

  • 5. Haguro-san

    Religious Building/Site/Shrine

    The climb up Mt. Haguro begins at the red Zuishin Gate (Zuishin-mon), then goes up 2,446 or so stone steps to the summit. The strenuous ascent...Read More

  • 6. Hirosaki-jo


    Guarded by deep moats, over which a red wooden bridge crosses in a picturesque curve, Hirosaki-jo is atop a high stone base. The original castle...Read More

  • 7. Iwate Koen

    City Park

    This park is large enough to get lost in, with varied landscapes, an astonishing variety of artfully placed flowers and trees, shady groves...Read More

  • 8. Nyuto Onsen

    Hot Spring

    Inside Towada-Hachimantai National Park, Nyuto consists of seven different hinabita onsen—all charming—characterized by their milky water...Read More

  • 9. SS-30 Building

    Aoba-ku | Viewpoint

    View the city of Sendai and the mountains for free from the observatory deck on the top floor of this 30-story skyscraper. Just follow the signs...Read More

  • 10. Tamagawa Onsen

    Scenic Drive

    The highlight is the strong, acidic water (which has a minor amount of radium): gushing out at almost 2,400 gallons per minute, it's Japan's...Read More

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  • 11. Yudono-san

    Religious Building/Site/Shrine

    One of a trio of Dewa peaks, 5,000-foot Yudono-san is generally the last on pilgrims' rounds. You can descend on foot in a few hours from Gas...Read More

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