Hi! Thank you for checking out our periodic column.
This time, we would like to introduce Ibaraki Prefecture in the Kanto region.
When you hear of Ibaraki, Mito natto or Mito Komon may come to your mind. According to the “47 Prefectures of Japan Ranking” conducted by Brand Research Institute Incorporated, Ibaraki has been ranked forty-seventh for two years in a row. Nonetheless, we shall present some of the enchanting things about Ibaraki that will dispel your image of the prefecture!
First of all, did you know that Ibaraki is one of the dominant agricultural prefectures in Japan? About thirty percent of its area is agricultural land, with the gross agricultural output ranked second domestically. For your information, Hokkaido has 2.5 times the gross agricultural output than that of Ibaraki and is ranked first, but the area of agricultural land in Ibaraki is only about one-sixth as that of Hokkaido. You can now fathom how Ibaraki plays an active role in the Japanese agriculture.
Some of the crops that Ibaraki boasts in gross agricultural output are pepper, potherb mustard (mizuna), bok choy (chingensai), lotus root (renkon), dried sweet potato, melon, and hen egg. Come to think of it, we often come across vegetables produced in Ibaraki when we go to the supermarkets. It’s no exaggeration to say that Ibaraki serves as the backbone of the prefecture that provides our meals.Second, Ibaraki has various tourist attractions introduced below:
Renowned for being one of the Three Greatest Gardens in Japan, and well-known for its Japanese plums.
- Fukuroda Falls
Chosen as one of the Three Greatest Waterfalls. You might be able to see an ice fall in winter!
- Ryujin Suspension Bridge
The longest pedestrian bridge in the mainland of Japan with a length of 375 meters.
- Mount Tsukuba
They say that mountains are, “Fuji in the west, and Tsukuba in the east.”
- Tsukuba Space Center
One of the bases of Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA). Various tours of the facility are conducted on a regular basis.
- Ushiku Buddha
The tallest standing bronze statue in the world with a height of 120 meters.
Finally, these are just some of the places that we would recommend you to visit in Ibaraki, but the hottest sightseeing destination that attracted over 520,000 visitors during the Golden Week vacation (April 25 – May 6) is the Hitachi Seaside Park. Stunning views of hillsides carpeted in around 4,500,000 nemophilas emit a blue horizon that assimilates with the sky when it is sunny.
Aren’t they just beautiful?
You can visit Mito City in mid-Ibaraki from Ueno, Tokyo by Joban Line limited express in 65 minutes. From Akihabara, you can take the Tsukuba Express and reach Tsukuba City located in southern-Ibaraki in just 45 minutes. It is quite quick and easy to get to Ibaraki, so why not take a visit there for a mini-trip during the weekends?