About Tatsuzawa Fudo Waterfall (tatsuzawa-fudo-no-taki [達沢不動滝])
The Tatsuzawa Fudo Waterfall (tatsuzawa-fudo-no-taki [達沢不動滝]; “Tatsuzawa Unmoving Falls”) was a popular and picturesque waterfall pairing on the Fudo River in the southwest of the Adatara Mountains.
The pairing is composed of a “male” waterfall called Otaki or Odaki Falls (which is the main one that most people notice) while there’s a dainty “female” waterfall to the left of it called Medaki Falls (that’s easily overlooked).
I won’t get into why the larger waterfall is considered the male and the smaller one is the female, but I have noticed that this association seems to happen a lot with Japanese waterfalls (e.g. Ginga and Ryusei Falls).
Anyways, the popularity of this place took Mom and I by surprise, especially since we had to do a bit of mountain driving to even get here from Koriyama.
That drive involved navigating our way along the southwestern base of the notorious Mt Adatara (which last erupted in 1996 and before that killed 72 sulphur mine workers in 1900).
The route passed through parts of Nakanosawa Onsen Village and it ultimately took us to the waterfall’s car park (see directions below).
Why is Tatsuzawa Fudo Falls Popular?
Nevertheless, during our visit in late July 2023, we showed up rather late in the afternoon at 4:35pm, and there were still people coming here even as late as 5:10pm when we left.
To be honest, I can’t really explain why this particular waterfall was so popular for something that out-of-the-way and not that extraordinary (at least compared to other popular ones we’ve seen).
However, the photogenic qualities of the main waterfall (as shown in the photos above) certainly helped its cause.
Maybe the presence of the Nakanosawa Onsen further enhanced this place’s popularity (by the way, the hot spring resort shouldn’t be surprising given the geologic activity here).
We also noticed that there was some holy-looking infrastructure along the trail to get here, where it’s said that the Buddhist or Shinto deity Fudo Myoo (Acala) was enshrined.
At the end of the day, it could just be that influencers (even before social media’s viral effects) have brought attention to the Tatsuzawa Fudo Waterfall.
Indeed, the Tatsuzawa Fudo Falls has apparently been shown on TV programs and movies pretty often, and it has even been called one of the 30 top water spots in Fukushima.
Experiencing Tatsuzawa Fudo Falls
In any case, the trail to the waterfall from the car park (see directions below) was a mere 10 minutes each way (so plenty of people in casual street clothes showed up).
It followed along a mostly flat path that stayed to the right of the Taru River (樽川 or Tarukawa though I’ve also seen it called Fudo River).
After about 400m, the trail ended at the viewing area adjacent to the Fudo Myoo Shrine building and some prayer relics by the lookout.
We couldn’t go right up to the bottom of the Otaki Waterfall because the authorities closed it off due to the threat of rock falls (though I’ve seen evidence of people getting there in years past).
Lastly, I do want to mention that at about 50m from the car park, Mom and I did notice that there was an unsigned side trail that deviated from the river.
We didn’t go far into it due to a thick presence of mosquitos and muddiness, and besides, it only seemed to go deep into the forest with no real goal in sight.
Well, it turned out that this happened to be the Boshin Trail, where a pivotal battle took place during the Boshin War when the Meiji Period started to replace the Edo Period in the late 19th century.
This spot was infamous in that a group of young samurai committed suicide when they incorrectly thought the Aizu Castle (in the town they were defending) was razed during this battle.
Overall, according to my notes and GPS log, the total walk was about 800m round-trip, and we spent about 35 minutes away from the car.
The Tatsuzawa Fudo Waterfall is by the Nakanosawa Onsen, which is within the town of Inawashiro near Koriyama in the Fukushima Prefecture, Japan. It may be administered by the local authorities in Inawashiro. For information or inquiries about the area as well as current conditions, you can try visiting the Tatsusawa Fudotaki Recreation Forest website or the Inawashiro Tourism Association website.
The Tatsuzawa Fudo Waterfall resides near the Nakanosawa Onsen, which is near Inawashiro.
It’s actually a pretty straightforward drive from Inawashiro to the Tatsuzawa Fudo Falls via mostly the National Route 115 and then its access road in Nakanosawa Onsen (taking about 30 minutes for the 20km drive).
Conversely, it’s also possible to take the Route 115 in the opposite direction from Fukushima (a 47km drive that would take about an hour).
However, we drove there from Koriyama, which is how I’ll describe this driving route in this section.
From the Koriyama View Hotel (where we were staying), we headed westward towards Route 49.
There are many ways to do that, but the most straightforward way would be to head west on the Route 6 (for about 2.5km) before turning right onto Route 49.
From there, we’d follow Route 49 north for about 14km before turning right onto Route 24 towards the Ban-etsu Expressway.
Then, we’d continue going north on the Route 24 for about 20km before turning left onto the access road leading another 5km to the Tatsuzawa Fudo Falls (there should be signs at this point).
Note that the last kilometer was on a narrow, unpaved gravel road.
Overall, this drive took us about an hour.
For some geographical context, Inawashiro was about 41km (under an hour drive) northwest of Koriyama, 72km (about an hour drive) southwest of Fukushima City, 158km (about 2 hours drive) north of Utsunomiya, 167km (about 2 hours drive) northeast of Nikko, 287km (about 3.5 hours drive) north of Narita International Airport, and 281km (about 3.5 hours drive) north of Tokyo.
Find A Place To Stay
Related Top 10 Lists
No Posts Found
Trip Planning Resources
Featured Images and Nearby Attractions
Visitor Comments:Got something you'd like to share or say to keep the conversation going? Feel free to leave a comment below...
No users have replied to the content on this page
Visitor Reviews of this Waterfall:If you have a waterfall story or write-up that you'd like to share, feel free to click the button below and fill out the form...
No users have submitted a write-up/review of this waterfall