In the city of Minoo, north of Osaka, the humble Minoo Park dazzles visitors with its gorgeous nature views. People travel from far and wide to enjoy the colors of the leaves in autumn and Minoo Park's main attraction, a large natural waterfall.
Discover the Beauty of Minoo Park
Minoo Park (also spelled Minoh Park) is a quasi-national park located on Mount Minoo. The full name of the park is Meiji no Mori Mino Kokutei Koen, in celebration of when the park was given its quasi-national park status in 1967 on the 100th anniversary of the Meiji Period. Minoo Park is the second smallest of the quasi-national parks, but that doesn’t make the area any less memorable.
Minoo Park marks the end of the Tokai Nature Trail, which connects the park to Tokyo’s Meiji no Mori Takao Quasi-National Park. The trail spans 1,697 kilometers over11 prefectures and takes a whopping 50 days to complete. It is recommended to face the trial during either spring or autumn as Japan’s weather can be quite harsh in summer and winter.
Attractions in Minoo Park
Nature is the biggest one of the attractions in Minoo Park. The skyline of the park is stained by beautiful reds and yellows in the autumn and are a luscious green in the spring and summer seasons. Within the park lives an array of animals that you will come across during your walk through. You’ll be greeted by monkeys and deer, which might be tempting to pat, but are protected by Japanese law, so be careful.
The main attraction of Minoo Park is the Minoo Waterfall, standing at 33 meters high and 5 meters wide. It’s approximately a three kilometer walk from Minoo Station and can take roughly 45 minutes. Halfway up the trail you’ll come across Ryuanji Temple, a Buddhist Temple that was established in the year 658.
Different attractions line the streets of Minoo Park as you walk along it to get the waterfall. Here you’ll find traditionally themed restaurants, places to buy souvenirs, and even spots to learn about the local wildlife. In the autumn months, you can try a deep-fried Maple Leaf snack, a local specialty.
Getting from Osaka to Minoo Park with JR Pass
Unfortunately, getting from Osaka to Minoo Park with the JR Pass is impossible. The train to Minoo Station is run by Hankyu, a local private railway company not affiliated with the nationwide Japan Railways and thus isn’t covered under the Japan Rail Pass.
Luckily, getting to Minoo Park is super simple and quite cheap. If you’re staying in Osaka, head to Ishibashi Station on the Takarazuka line from the Hankyu section of Umeda Station. When you get to Ishibashi Station, you’ll need to transfer to the Minoo Line to Minoo Station. This trip will take you only 25 minutes from Ishibashi Station and cost 270 yen.
From the station, you can enjoy come of the sights of the area while you stroll over the first of the trails in Minoo Park. Close to the park’s entrance in the north-east is the Katsuoji Temple, a 1,200-year-old Buddhist Temple complex famous for Daruma dolls.
Minoo Park at Night
Exploring Minoo Park at night can be an amazing way to experience the park. With hotels and onsen inside the park available all year round, you can explore the parks nightlife and see the sunrise over the natural breathtaking beauty. During certain months in the summer, the Minoo waterfall will be lit up in many spectacular colors from LEDs and in autumn with the colorful leaves.
- Spot name: Minoo Park
- Street address: 1-18 Minoo koen, Minoo, Osaka 562-0002
- Access: A 14-minute walk from Minoo Station