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Kirifuri Waterfall (~̑, Kirifuri no taki) is an impressive, 75 meter high, two-tiered waterfall located below the Kirifuri Highlands, a few kilometers northeast of the temples and shrines of Nikko. The sight of the elegant falls cascading down the mountain provides a nice contrast to the surrounding foliage, which is lush and green in spring and summer and displays fiery shades of red, orange and gold in autumn.

The name Kirifuri means "falling mist" after the fine mist that is created when the water crashes against the rocks at the bottom of the lower falls. The view may occasionally be obscured when mist or fog covers the valley. It used to be possible to hike down to the base of the waterfalls, but the trail down the mountain partially collapsed several years ago and has been closed ever since.

Instead, the waterfall can be seen from a wooden observation deck built high up on the mountain across the valley from the falls. The observation deck is located a ten minute walk down a mostly paved trail from the parking lot and bus stop, where you will also find two restaurants and public toilets. Autumn colors in the area are usually best around late October to early November.

Getting there and around

From April to late November, Kirifuri Waterfall is connected by bus from JR Nikko and Tobu Nikko stations about once per hour. Take a bus in direction of Kirifuri Kogen (~) and get off at Kirifuri-no-taki bus stop (~̑) from where it is a ten minute walk to the observation deck . The one way bus ride takes about ten minutes and costs 340 yen and is covered by the Nikko All Area Pass. Note that the buses do not stop near the temples and shrines of Nikko, and they do not run from late November through March.

The "Kirifuri no taki Free Pass" is a discount bus pass that costs only 600 yen and is valid on one calendar day on buses between Nikko Station and the waterfall, as well as on the World Heritage loop buses in central Nikko.

How to get to and around Nikko

Hotels around Nikko

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    • B&B Izumi Nikko
      Budget-friendly
      B&B Izumi Nikko features river views, free WiFi and free private parking, located in Nikko, 2.4 km from Nikko Toshogu Shrine. Fitted with a balcony, the units offer air conditioning and feature a flat-screen TV and a private bathroom with bidet and a hairdryer. A fridge and kettle are also featured. Guests at the bed and breakfast can enjoy a ? la carte or an American breakfast. A terrace can be found at B&B Izumi Nikko, along with a garden. Kegon Falls is 18 km from the accommodation, while Rinno-ji Temple is 1.7 km away.
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    • Stay Nikko Guesthouse
      Budget-friendly
      Featuring free WiFi, Stay Nikko Guesthouse offers accommodation in Nikko. Nikko Station on the Tobu and JR lines can be reached within a 13-minute walk. Free private parking is available on site. Every room at this guest house is air conditioned and comes with a flat-screen TV. Views of the mountains, river or garden are featured in certain rooms. Guests will find a microwave, toaster and kettle on site. Nikko Toshogu Shrine is a 20-minute stroll from Stay Nikko Guesthouse, while Kegon Falls is a 50-minute bus ride from the property.
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    • sumica apartments
      Budget-friendly
      Sumica apartmens offers accommodation in Nikko, 900 metres from Nikko Toshogu Shrine and 9.3 km from Kegon Falls. The property features views of the city and is 18 km from Nikko Yumoto Hot Spring. The accommodation is only a 2-minute stroll to Shinkyo Bridge, known as the entrance to the Shrines and Temples of Nikko, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The kitchenette is fitted with a microwave. Towels and bed linen are offered at sumica apartmens. Nikk?-kokuritsu-k?en is 22 km from sumica apartmens, while Rinnoji Temple is 600 metres from the property.
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    • Rindou No Ie
      Budget-friendly
      A 5-minute ride from Tobu Nikko Train Station on the hotelfs free shuttle, the family-run Rindou No Ie offers Japanese rooms with tatami (woven-straw) floors and futon beds. Free WiFi is available throughout. The air-conditioned rooms at Rindou No Ie Ryokan include a flat-screen TV and tea set. Bathrooms are shared. The Nikko Toshogu World Heritage Area is 2 km away. JR Nikko Train Station is 1.2 km from the hotel. Tobu Nikko Train Station is 900 metres away. On-site parking is free. A free-use internet terminal, microwave and fridge are provided in the common area. The hotelfs washer can be used free of charge, and a dryer is available for a fee.
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    • Midorian
      Budget-friendly
      Featuring a garden, Midorian is located within Nikko National Park. The property is around 1.5 km from Nikko Toshogu Shrine, 8 km from Kegon Falls and a 16-minute walk from Futarasan Shrine. The guest house features mountain views, a terrace, and free WiFi is available throughout the property. On-site parking is available free of charge. Guest rooms in the guest house are fitted with a kettle. A shared kitchen comes with a microwave, a toaster and a fridge. At Midorian, every room comes with a shared bathroom with a hair dryer. Cycling and hiking are among the activities that guests of the accommodation can find nearby. Rinnoji Temple is 1.6 km from Midorian.
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    • Sanga Nikko
      Budget-friendly
      Located in Nikko, 2.1 km from Nikko Toshogu Shrine, Sanga Nikko provides rooms with free WiFi access. The property is set 10 km from Kegon Falls and 22 km from Nikk?-kokuritsu-k?en. Nikko Station and Tobu-Nikko Station are within a 5-minute walk from the property. The property is equipped with two private bathrooms. A range of activities are offered in the area, such as cycling and fishing. A supermarket is situated within a 5-minute walk from the property. This property is situated a short distance from attractions such as Rinnoji Temple and Shinkyo Bridge. Futarasan Shrine is 2.2 km from the property, while Chuzenji Lake is 12 km away.
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    • Nikko Guesthouse Sumica
      Budget-friendly
      Just a 3-minute walk from JR Nikko Train Station, Guesthouse Sumica offers beds in dormitory rooms, as well as Japanese-style private rooms. It features a shared kitchen and free tea and coffee. Free Wi-Fi is provided in the whole building. The Sumica Guesthouse is a 5-minute drive from the Nikko Tosho-gu shrine, and a 30-minute drive from both Lake Chuzenji-ko and historical theme park village Edo Wonderland (Nikko Edomura). JR Nikko Train Station is a 3-minute walk away. Nikko Guesthouse Sumica is a completely non-smoking hotel. It offers luggage storage, and it has a curfew at 23:00.
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    • Nikko Akarinoyado Villa Revage
      Mid-range
      Homely rooms with mountain views, free Wi-Fi and a private bath await guests at Villa Revage, 350 metres from Nikko Botanical Garden. It is completely non-smoking, and free private parking is available on site. Rooms at Nikko Akarinoyado Villa Revage are heated and come with simple furnishings and art on the walls. An LCD satellite TV is included. Both a hairdryer and toiletries are provided. You can relax on the sun terrace, enjoy the garden or unwind in one of the private reservable baths. A Western breakfast is served at the dining room, which boasts a high ceiling and forest views. The hotel is 4 km from JR Nikko Train Station and Tobu Nikko Train Station. Nikko Tamozawa Imperial Villa is 800 metres away, and Nikko Toshogu Shrine is 2 km away.
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    • Nikkorisou Backpackers
      Budget-friendly
      Featuring free WiFi, Nikkorisou Backpackers offers accommodation in Nikko, 800 metres from Nikko Tosho-gu Shrine. Free private parking is available on site. Rooms are fitted with a shared bathroom. There is a shared kitchen at the property. The area is popular for cycling. Kegon Falls is 9 km from the property.
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    • Okunoin Hotel Tokugawa
      Luxury
      Located in Nikko, Hotel Tokugawa is a traditional Japanese-style ryokan featuring a hot spring bath. It offers Japanese-style and Western rooms with free WiFi access, and provides free pick up service from Nikko Train Station. Guests at Tokugawa Hotel can unwind in the public hot spring bath, savour a massage treatment or go hiking in the area. Guests can also take full advantage of the hotelfs shuttle service from Toshogu Shrine. Free luggage storage and valet parking is also offered by the hotel. With a garden view, each air-conditioned room here will provide you with a refrigerator, an electric kettle and a yukata (Japanese bathrobe). The private bathroom comes with a bathtub, free toiletries and a hairdryer. The ryokan is a 6-minute drive from Nikko Toshogu Shrine, and a 10-minute drive from Nikko Train Station. The on-site dining area is open from 08:00 to 09:00 for breakfast. An authentic Japanese dinner will be prepared for guests with meal plans.
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