Japan in summer. Tokyo is good, but why not to go a bit further and enjoy the cool Nasu highlands?

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Thermal sensation is higher than real temperature in Tokyo in summer. It's because of the asphalt roads, because concrete buildings easily get hot in the sun, because of the air coming from the outdoor units of air conditioners, reduced air passage due to its many buildings, etc. Since humidity is also high, if you walk outside all the time, you will perspire a lot (therefore, we recommend you to take a handkerchief or wiping sheets with you to wipe out perspiration).

Because of this, today we'll tell you about a "hishochi" easy to visit from Tokyo. "Hishochi" means cool spots visited by people living in hot places like Tokyo during their summer vacations or holidays. Places like Karuizawa in Nagano Prefecture, are famous, but, this time, our editorial department focused on Nasu highlands in Tochigi Prefecture.

Since Nasu highlands is at an altitude of about 1,000 meters, average temperature is around 25 in August, the hottest month. This means about 6 lower than the average temperature in Tokyo. It's not only cool, but it also has hot springs and food is tasty there. You can also enjoy shopping there, because there are outlet stores where you can buy things like articles of luxury brands and popular selection shops at low prices. Also, it's easy to visit from Tokyo!

If you decide to go to Nasu highlands, you should definitely check the resort facilities of Hunter Mountain Shiobara.

It's at an altitude of 1300 meters and it's an enjoyable place in summer, apart from being a place to enjoy skiing in winter. In 2015, from July 18 (Sat) to August 30 (Sun), visitors can enjoy its beautiful scene as the Hunter Mountain Lily Park. At the park, there's a garden with as much as four million lilies, the largest in Japan! You will be certainly enchanted by its beauty.

In addition, you can experience horse riding, eat food made using local ingredients and you will never get bored even if you stay there a whole day.

From Tokyo Station, you can go to Nasushiobara Station by the JR Tohoku Shinkansen in about 70 minutes. Free shuttle buses leave from there and arrive in about 60 minutes; so it's very easy to go there. You can also go from Asakusa Station to Kinugawa-Onsen Station by the Tobu Nikko line in about 120 minutes. Free shuttle buses also leave from there and arrive in about 55 minutes. It's convenient to stay at a hotel in Shiobara Hot Springs or in Nasu Hot Springs and, then, go to Hunter Mountain Shiobara or you may depart from Kinugawa Hot Springs instead.
* Free shuttle buses need to be reserved. Please visit the URL at the end of this article for details.

If you come and travel in Japan, besides spots like the streets, shrines, temples and places of historic interest, you should also enjoy nature. Hunter Mountain Shiobara is the right spot for it.

【Hunter Mountain Lily Park (Hunter Mountain Shiobara)】

Address:Azamaekuro, Yumotoshiobara, Nasushiobara City, Tochigi
July 18 (Sat) - August 30 (Sun), 2015
Open:9:00-16:00 (final uplift)
Visit the following URL for prices and information on free shuttle buses.