Tour for Sustainable Tourism Feb. 21, 2024

 Nine international students from Thailand and Malaysia and their accompanying staff members came to Mt. Takao despite the chilly weather with light drizzle.

Students energetic even in the rain

They are the students participating in the International Science Exchange Program for Youth (Sakura Science Program) at J. F. Oberlin University. Their objective today is to think about the balance between environmental conservation and economic development through hiking on Mt. Takao.

Experiencing Japanese culture

For several days, we, TENGU guide members, had been preparing for the tour. We ourselves learned what “Sustainable Tourism” is. And we discussed to select important guiding points for the students to think about this theme.

In front of the symbolic architecture

Mt. Takao had been severely damaged in the past by trash discarded by climbers. Local community had worked together to pick up trash scattered over the mountain and created a system to prevent this problem from happening again in the future. The stone statue called "Osoji-Kozo,” a.k.a. “Sweeper boy” is the symbol of this activity. 

"Osoji-Kozo,  a.k.a. “Sweeper boy.” 

The students listened with great interest to the history of vegetation changing due to global warming, mountain worship, Shintoism and Buddhism, and the myths that have been handed down in Mt. Takao for centuries. We are happy if the students got some clues to think about sustainable tourism.

Guests listening to the guide

At the Gongen Tea House on the way, everyone bought sesame Mochi dumplings, a specialty of Mt. Takao. Everyone seemed to enjoy eating it.

Happy faces with “Dango-Yaki”

All of the guests today said they love Japan. They like Japanese animation, Japanese actors, Japanese food and so on. Some said they would like to come back to Japan for a longer period of time next opportunity. And at the end of the tour, everyone had a smile on their face. They seemed to have fully enjoyed today's tour.  

End of the tour at Kiyotaki Station 

(Written by HIDE)


The tour at the high season of Autumn leaves Dec. 2, 2023


We had 13 guests from all over the world, such as Philippines, Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Zambia,  Cambodia, Thailand, Tunisia, Guinea, Malawi, Ghana, Nepal, Serbia.

They are researchers working on various projects and are selected by their governments.

It was really an international tour!

 The weather was fine but a bit cold. The Autumn leaves festival was held on Mt Takao.  As we expected, there were a lot of people in front of the station.


In front of Keio Takaosan-guchi station 


Our tour started around 10:30am after a brief greeting and taking a photo together.

First, several spots were guided at the foot, then we took the cable car.

To our surprise, we were able to get on the cable car without waiting. 

How lucky we were!


After reached the upper cable car station, we were divided into two groups and headed to the top of the mountain respectively.


At the Octopus cedar tree


At the fork of Men’s slope & Women’s slope 


On the Yuki-hill, we had lunch. There we enjoyed seeing lovely colored maple leaves. This is surely one of the best spots for viewing autumn foliage.



At the Heavenly Kings Gate 


In the Yakuo-in temple 


On the summit of Mt Takao


We reached on the top around 2 pm. Unfortunately, we couldn’t see Mt Fuji.

After taking a short break, we descended. This time we chose trail No 4 which has Miyama suspension bridge. It is always one of highlights for visitors.


On the suspension bridge 


On the way back, we took the chair lifts. Though we had to wait 15min to ride, we enjoyed its thrilling ride and wonderful view.


It was almost 4pm when we came back to the foot. At last we took the group photo again and said goodbye to the guests. It seemed that they smiled with a satisfied look. If they had a wonderful time on Mt Takao, it’s our great pleasure.


In front of Kiyotaki station


“Thank you for coming to Mt Takao!”

“Good luck to everyone!”

“Enjoy your stay in Japan!”

 By Sally


Private Tour Date: October 23 , 2013

 Today, we enjoyed hiking with a Canadian couple. They are both excellent Japanese speakers and eager birdwatchers.

This tour include two additional missions.

Find the four places by photos of the guest's grandfather when he visited Mt. Takao 70 years ago. And enjoy watching wild birds of Japan that are not seen in Canada.

Compare the stone lantern with the old photo to confirm that this is the first place.

Actually, tour leader HIDE-san had already searched the places beforehand.

We looked around the religious facilities of Yakuoin.

On this day we often saw some Black Kites,”tobi” in Japanese.

In the Yuuki-en, they flew close to us many times and we were able to observe them clearly.

The 4th and final object to back to 70 years ago was this “komainu” , guardian dog. Mission Complete!    

The sculpture of the Eight Chinese Immortals on GONGEN-do Hall protected by komainu , has a unique episode.

We made it around 12:30

We were lucky enough to see snow-capped

 Mt. Fuji.

We took lunch at a soba restaurant in Momiji-dai.

Even in Canada, they call it "soba noodles" not buckwheat noodle, and eat zaru-soba in the summer.

After lunch we took trail # 4.

While hiking, we observed lots of Japanese wild birds like, Great Tit, Varied Tit, Long-tailed Tit, Brown-eared Bulbul, Jays, etc. Also, they enjoyed listening to the chirping and comparing it with a bird-watching app on their smartphones.

They said that they use podcasts to study Japanese on a daily basis, and they were very pro-Japan ese people who mentioned the Japan names of birds and read some signboard in Japanese.

I’m sure they will enjoy watching-birds across Japan.

We would be very happy this detective tour at Mt. Takao will remain in their memories.

Thank you for joining our tour!


Written by Keita


Private Tour on 16th October 2023


Today’s guests were three Japan third-generation Americans live in Los Angeles who met at the meeting place on time.

We walked along a pleasant mountain trail No.1 that was neither hot nor cold.

On the way, we chatted about cultural differences and Shohei Otani and looked at big cedar trees that are rich in nature.

They are interested in monkeys and the staff of the monkey garden are involved and listen intently to explanations.

We were fortunate enough to come across the butterfly “Asagi Madara”, whose ecology is said to be full of mysteries.

The work of a person called Banksy of the Forest of Mt. Takao was seen again today. Will the next one be a Halloween pumpkin?

This is a large cedar tree” Octopus Cedar tree” that is said to be an auspicious place.

We had lunch at the top.

The suspension bridge surrounded by nature is very pleasant and popular place.

The descent from the mountain was a chairlift. You can spend a short time while looking at nature.

We were come back to the station safely as planned. 

Many thanks to the wonderful guest for sharing the refreshing atmosphere and a good time.

by Nosan