Three recommended sightseeing spots in Yamagata Prefecture

Japan Visit

Yamagata Prefecture is a region rich in sightseeing spots. In this article, we introduce four recommended sightseeing spots that you should definitely visit when you are in Yamagata Prefecture. We will cover traditional sightseeing spots in Yamagata Prefecture, such as Uesugi Shrine and Zao Onsen. We will also provide information on how to enjoy sightseeing in Yamagata Prefecture even more throughout the article, so please take a look.


Enjoy history at the historical sightseeing spot Uesugi Shrine(上杉神社)

When you visit Yamagata Prefecture, you should definitely take a look at the many historical sights. Uesugi Shrine is a popular spot where you can enjoy the atmosphere of olden times. Uesugi Shrine is located in Yamagata City, Yamagata Prefecture, and is known as a shrine dedicated to Takayama Uesugi.

Uesugi Shrine was built by Takayama Uesugi’s admirers after his death and is now worshipped by many people. Uesugi Takayama was a Confucian scholar active in the Edo period and is known as a central figure in the reform of clan politics. Uesugi Shrine was erected to honour his ideas and achievements and to pass them on to future generations.

Uesugi Shrine has beautiful buildings such as the main shrine, the hall of worship and the hall of offerings, and is surrounded by a garden filled with seasonal flowers. The shrine attracts many tourists because of the beautiful cherry blossoms in spring and autumn leaves in autumn. Uesugi Shrine also hosts the annual Uesugi Shrine Festival in memory of Takayama Uesugi. The festival attracts many worshippers from Yamagata City and beyond, and includes Shinto rituals, dances and a portable shrine procession.

As a shrine dedicated to Takayama Uesugi, Uesugi Shrine is a valuable place to celebrate his ideas and achievements and to pass them on to future generations. The shrine is loved by many and is one of Yamagata City’s most popular tourist attractions.

Relieve your fatigue at Zao Onsen(蔵王温泉)

Yamagata Prefecture’s hot springs are renowned for their healing properties. Zao Onsen is known for the quality of its springs. There are many different types of onsen, including open-air baths and stylish ryokans. Wherever you go, you are sure to find a hot spring that suits you.

Zao Onsen is located at the foot of Mount Zao in Yamagata Prefecture, in the Zao Mountain Range, one of Japan’s three most spectacular natural wonders. Surrounded by a beautiful natural environment, Zao Onsen has a variety of attractions in each of the four seasons and is loved by many tourists. There are many onsen facilities and ryokan (Japanese-style inns) where you can enjoy a variety of hot springs, including open-air and indoor baths, with no hot-spring water. Zao Onsen is also one of Japan’s leading ski resorts and attracts many skiers in winter.

There are also many nature-rich tourist attractions in the area around Zao Onsen. For example, the Zao Echo Line is a driveway that runs near the top of Mt Zao and offers spectacular views. The Zao Ropeway also offers a view from the top of the mountain. In addition, there is a wealth of delicious food and souvenirs in the area around Zao Onsen. For example, Zao soba (buckwheat noodles) and Zao beef are well-known.

Zao Onsen is one of the leading hot spring resorts in the Tohoku region and is loved by many tourists for its various attractions such as nature, hot springs and food.

Mount Hagurosan(羽黒山)

Mount Haguro is a 1,084-metre-high mountain straddling Yamagata and Akita prefectures and is known as one of the leading power spots in the Tohoku region. Hagurosan has a long history of being used as a training ground for Shugendo, and there are many shrines and Buddhist temples on the mountain. The most representative examples are Haguro Shrine, Hagurosan Shrine and Hagurosan Shugen Buddhist Temple. Mount Hagurosan also has natural landscapes such as Fudo Falls and Senjyatashiki, which offer beautiful seasonal views. Mount Hagurosan can be climbed to the summit, which has two trails and takes about three to five hours round trip. The mountain attracts many climbers, especially in summer, but in winter, mountain gear is required due to the deep snow.

Mount Hagurosan is also famous as a power spot, where many people come to purify themselves and pray for their wishes. Various events are also held throughout the year, attracting many tourists.

Food recommendations in Yamagata

Yamagata Prefecture offers many delicious food options. Below are some food recommendations in Yamagata Prefecture.

Yonezawa beef(米沢牛)

 Of the black Japanese beef raised in Yonezawa City, Yamagata Prefecture, the best quality beef is sold as Yonezawa Beef. It is characterised by its fine, tender and high-quality meat, which can be enjoyed as grilled meat or steak.

Dewa Sanzan Soba(出羽三山そば)

Soba produced around the three mountains of Dewa in Yamagata Prefecture (Mt Yuden, Mt Gassan and Mt Chokai), characterised by thin, supple noodles and a firm sauce. Cold ‘zarusoba’ and warm ‘kakesoba’ are available, both of which are delicious.

Zao Onsen Corn(蔵王温泉とうもろこし)

This corn is grown in the area around Zao Onsen, and is characterised by its sweetness and juiciness. It can be eaten grilled or boiled.

Mozuku (もずく)

Seaweed found off the coast of Yamagata Prefecture, used in soups, vinegared dishes and tempura. It is characterised by its crunchy texture and rich flavour.


In Yamagata Prefecture, many cherries are grown in the Shonai region and Tendo City. They are characterised by their sweetness and juiciness, and are a seasonal luxury fruit.

These are just a few examples of recommended food in Yamagata Prefecture. If you have the opportunity, please visit Yamagata Prefecture and enjoy the delicious food.

Enjoy a higher grade of sightseeing in Yamagata Prefecture!

If you want to take your sightseeing in Yamagata Prefecture up a notch, why not visit one of the festivals held in Yamagata Prefecture? The Yamagata Grand Fireworks Festival and the Yonezawa Uesugi Festival are sure to have something appealing to offer.


Yamagata Prefecture is a great place for sightseeing. You can visit historical sights, relax in hot springs, enjoy leisure facilities and take part in festivals. No matter what type of sightseeing you want to do, Yamagata Prefecture has something for everyone. Plan your trip now and experience all that Yamagata Prefecture has to offer.