Sandankyo Gorge 三段峡
A waterfall in the Sandankyo gorge
Credit: Julia Mariani
Located about 75 minutes drive north-west of Hiroshima, Sandankyo Gorge offers a breath of fresh air in an exceptional location.
Sandankyo Gorge offers 13km of waterfalls, streams, ravines, cliffs, hanging bridges and jungle.
This relatively unfrequented place is a paradise for hikers and nature lovers. The soft green of spring foliage, and the glow of the autumn leaves make for amazing scenery.
Reputed for its magnificent location nationwide, the Sandan Valley extends from the entrance of Sandankyo to Hijiri lake.
Back to our roots
The area around the main access to the site is bordered by the inevitable souvenir shops, but nature soon takes over. A succession of rapids, and red and green mossy rocks border the trail.
Several hiking trails, from half an hour to four hours of walking, make it accessible to all.
By taking the longest trail (4 hours round trip), you will see three waterfalls found in the Sandankyo Gorge, cross a river with crystal clear water and several bridges. All this accompanied by the chirping of birds and the rustle of the water.
The one hour long hike (outward journey, about 2.7km, so 2 hours round trip) allows you to see the first waterfall, called Shimai (sisters) because it is actually two waterfalls that flow parallel to each other.
Then the trail leads to Ishidoi, the "stone gutter", a limpid stream, and finally to the emerald green basin, Kurofuchi. From there you can take a boat to get to the other side where there is a small local restaurant.
As you are in Japan, and no trip is complete without an onsen, or hot spring, the Sandankyo Hotel on the street leading to the site offers the opportunity for travelers to soak in a bath for just 500 yen.
Those who want to enjoy this enchanting place and explore it in more depth can stay in this hotel, located on the riverside.