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Kumobaike Pond is a must for tourists all year round

By Elizabeth Sok

Only 20 minutes by foot from JR Hokuriku Shinkansen’s Karuizawa station, Kumobaike Pond is a must for tourists all year round. Sometimes called Swan Lake by locals for the swans that visit the area in winter, this pond is a lovely spot for birdwatching due to the many wild birds that call the area home. At approximately one kilometer, the path around the pond will take you about 20 minutes to complete a stroll.

Regardless of the season, you’ll be able to take advantage of the benches along the shore to take in the natural beauty the site has to offer. Each time of year presents a different landscape for visitors from the bare trees of the winter months to the darkest greens of summer punctuated with colorful blooms.

Warm Weather Views

Spring’s milder temperature makes for a comfortable time to explore the surrounding area. Image: PIXTA/ denkei

Spring and summer offer beautiful sights of the lake. Although there is only a solitary cherry tree, it is nevertheless a stunning one that stands with pink blooms against the resplendent light green forest of trees that characterize the pond in the springtime. Also, listen for the gentle songs of the many wild birds, such as ducks, in the area. Spring’s milder temperature makes for a comfortable time to explore the lovely plant life and flora of the pond, including delicate low-lying Japanese violets and indigenous doudan tsutsuji, a shrub with hanging white bell-shaped flowers.

Summer’s foliage is a deeper green, which contrasts with the blue water. The mountain hydrangeas and spotted bellflowers of early summer make way for the mountain lilies and bright purple thistles of later summer. Walking along the winding forest paths and in and out of tunnels of trees, you can enjoy a cooler moment in the unwavering heat of Japan’s summers.

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© GaijinPot

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