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Some stories about Yukata (simple kimono)_history, separate Yukata, Yukata experience

If you visit Japan, you may see people who wear Yukata especially in summer.
・Yukata history The origin of Yukata goes back to Heian period (794-1185). It is said that Yukatabira, a kind of underwear, was worn to hide their skin for bathing.

In Edo period, Yukata spread to ordinary people. It was used to hide their skin and to absorb moisture after taking a bath.

・These days’ Yukata
Nowadays, Yukata is not for everyday cloths but used as a simple kimono when we enjoy summer festival like firework displays and Bon festival.
Most people can’t wear Yukata and kimono by ourselves, so we make a reservation kimono dresser.
Recently easy-wear Yukata and separate Yukata are also sold at shop and on the internet site.

○Easy-wear Yukata
You have to adjust the length of Yukata and tie the yukata tightly around the waist by using a string, the koshi-himo. But you don’t have to tie Obi. Just put on Obi which is already tied.

○Separete Yukata
Lower part of Yukata is like a wrap-around skirt. Upper par…

Enjoy hiking in the marshilands of Oze National Park.

Oze national park, which extends over Gunma, Fukushima and Niigata prefecture, is the largest highland marsh in the mainland of Japan.
Oze national park
It is 1400m above sea level and surrounded with about 2000m high mountains. You can see spectacular sights and rare plants there.

We went on a guided hiking around Ozegahara on a 2-day package from Osaka. I’ll introduce the experience.

We stayed at the hotel near Oze. On the next morning we rode on a micro bus from the hotel to 鳩待峠(Hatomachi Toge Pass)(No.1 in the below map). We arrived there at 9:20.
On the way to 川上川(Kawakami river) we could see wild flowers.

This is エンレイソウ(Trillium).
You can see very small sober flower in the center.
This is ショウジョウバカマ(Oriental swamp pink).
Oriental swamp pink
When we visited there the beginning of June, Snow still remained.
Snow still remained
Before cross Kawakami river, there were a lot of ミズバショウ(Asian skunk cabbage) in the marshland.
Asian skunk cabbage in the marshland
The photo as follows is Asian skunk cabbage(the white one) and marsh marigold(the yellow one).
After we crossed Kawakami river, we arrived 山の鼻ビジターセンター(Yamanohana Visitor Center) (2 in the map) at 10:30.
You can get information about Oze Nathonal Park here and you can use toilet (You need chip for use. You had better prepare several 100 yen coins.) .

You can also eat meal or buy snacks here. But during tourist season it is crowded so you had better bring box lunch.

We only took short break here and kept walking.

The mountain we can see in front of the photo below is 燧ケ岳(Hiuchigatake mountain) (2356m height)(B in the map).
We could see many beautiful 水芭蕉(ミズバショウ)along the small stream.
As I looked back, I could see snowcapped 至仏山(Shibutuzan, Mt. Shibutu)(A in the map) (2228m height).
At 牛首分岐(Ushikubi bunki diverging point), we could see Mt. Hiuchigatake as reflected in the water.
We arrived here at 11:05.
I’m not sure but we walked around here for a while.
And we went back to Yamanohana (2 in the map).

On the way going back to Hatomachi Toge Pass(1 in the map), we could see beautiful Asian skunk cabbages again.
I don’t remember well but we may have eaten our box lunch at Yamanohana.

When we visited there, it was sunny day, but mountain climate is usually changeable. So if you are planning to come to Oze National Park, check Oze hiking guide and prepare enough.(official site:

If you start hiking from Hatomachi Toge Pass(1 in the map) and use a private car, you can’t go Hatomachi Toge Pass directly. You have to get off your car and change to shuttle bus(a fee). Please check detailed information in official site.

Oze’s best season is from the end of March to the beginning of summer. And you can enjoy Oze’s maple at September and autumn leaves at October.

If you are interested in ニッコウキスゲ (yellow alpine lilies) as below, you should go from the middle of July to the end of July at Ozegahara(2,3,4,5,6 in the map).
But the best time is slightly different every year so please check by yourself.

Recently there are some guided package tours in English. I think guided package tour is one of good choices because it is convenient and safe.

Have a nice trip.

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