5 Spectacular Spots for Living Fossil "Metasequoia" and The Best Time to See Them

5 Spectacular Spots for Living Fossil
In recent years, rows of metasequoia trees have been attracting attention on SNS.
There is another tree with a similar name, the sequoia, but it is an evergreen tree with green leaves year-round. The metasequoia, on the other hand, is a deciduous tree. In autumn, its leaves change color.

Metasequoia has been called a "living fossil." Wonder why?

Metasequoia, discovered as a fossil in 1939, seems to have already flourished around 65 million years ago. When the fossil was discovered, it was thought to be already extinct, but in 1945, a living tree was discovered in China, and since then it has been called a "living fossil" to this day.
Thus, the metasequoia landscapes we see in Japan today are actually landscapes that our ancestors saw many years ago.
Here are five spectacular views of metasequoia trees, known as living fossils.

1. Tsurumi Ryokuchi Park(Osaka)

Tsurumi Ryokuchi Park
  • Tsurumi Ryokuchi Park
  • TsurumiRyokuchi Park

|30 minutes from Umeda! Metasequoia trees in an urban oasis

Osaka has an image of not having much greenery, but you can see a row of metasequoia trees about 30 minutes from Umeda, the city's busiest shopping district!
Entering the park from the central entrance, you will be greeted by a row of metasequoia trees in brilliant red colors.
In the center of the vast site, which is about 26 times the size of the Tokyo Dome, is a pond where you can gaze at a landscape filled with nature, including waterfowl and fish gathering in the pond, seasonal flowers and grasses, and metasequoia trees. Truly a healing spot in the city!
【Best Season】Early November - Early December
【Address】2-163 Ryokuchikoen, Tsurumi Ward, Osaka, 538-0036
【Entry Fee】Free (fee-based facilities available)
【WEB site】https://www.tsurumi-ryokuchi.jp/
【Access】A short walk from Tsurumi-ryokuchi Station on the Osaka Metro Nagahori Tsurumi-ryokuchi Line
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2. Tove Jansson Akebono Children's Forest Park(Saitama)

Tove Jansson Akebono Children's Forest Park
  • Tove Jansson Akebono Children's Forest Park
  • Tove Jansson Akebono Children's Forest Park

|Moomin Valley in Saitama! Playful buildings and metasequoia

Tove Jansson Akebono Children's Forest Park, located in Hanno City, Saitama Prefecture, is a small park with free admission that was created based on the world of Scandinavian fairy tales. The park is filled with cute and mysteriously shaped buildings, such as mushroom houses and bathing huts, inspired by the world of the Moomins!
That alone is enough to get you excited, but if you visit in the fall, you can see rows of metasequoia trees dyed a magnificent orange, and the harmony with the fairy-tale-like buildings will make you feel as if you have wandered into a picture book.
It is a very nice park where you can stroll and feel yourself as a child.
【Best Season】Mid to late November

3. Besshonuma Park(Saitama)

Besshonuma Park
  • Besshonuma Park
  • Bessho-numa Park

|Photogenic and spectacular view of upside-down metasequoia reflected in a large swamp.

Besshonuma Park, where you can see rows of metasequoia trees in Saitama Prefecture, is another park after Akebono Children's Forest Park. The park was created about one million years ago when water that gushed out on the Omiya Plateau pooled and became a swamp.
The rows of metasequoia trees bordering the pond, as well as the Bald cypress that resemble metasequoias, are so beautifully maintained that it seems as if you are in a foreign country. At night, the pond is illuminated, creating an even more magical atmosphere.
【Best Season】From late November
【Address】4-12-10 Minami Ward, Saitama City, Saitama Prefecture
【Entry Fee】Free
【WEB site (Japanese)】https://www.sgp.or.jp/bessyonuma
【Access】5 minute walk from JR Saikyo Line Naka-Urawa Station
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4. Makino Highland(Shiga)

Makino Highland
  • Makino Highland
  • Makino Kogen

|An endless orange tunnel of Metasequoia

The metasequoia tree-lined road in Makino, Shiga Prefecture, has become a popular photo spot on SNS in recent years. About 500 metasequoia trees are planted on both sides of the 2.4-km roadway that runs through the middle of a flat area with no buildings or trees. The road is gently sloping and the end of the road is hidden by metasequoia leaves, making it look like "a road that never ends"!
The bright orange walkway is photo-worthy, and it's very crowded during the season. It also blends beautifully with the distant Nosaka Mountains, creating a beautiful sight even from a distance!
【Best Season】Late November~early December
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5. Mizumoto Park(Tokyo)

Mizumoto Park
  • Mizumoto Park
  • Mizumoto Park

|A forest surrounded by 1,500 metasequoia trees

Mizumoto Park, one of Tokyo's largest parks, is located around a pond called Koaidame and is a recreational area for visitors to enjoy seasonal flowers and watch waterfowl at any time of year. In one corner of the park is the "Metasequoia Forest" with about 1,500 metasequoia trees that adorn the park and paint the surrounding area orange!
When you look at the forest from the other side of the pond, it is so vast that you might think you are not really in Tokyo. This forest in Tokyo is definitely worth a visit!
【Best Season】Early to mid-December
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Autumn foliage is often associated with bright red maple trees and golden ginkgo trees, but the orange glow of metasequoia trees is also extremely stunning. How about visiting this year to see the spectacular late-autumn scenery that has been loved since long ago?

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