Cretaceous Rock Formations
These cretaceous rocks stemming from the Mesozoic Era (around 6.5 million years ago) are the first rock formation of their kind to be discovered in Ibaraki. Fossilized ammonites and sharks have even been discovered in the area.
- Isozakicho, Hitachinaka City
- By car: 5-minute drive from the Hitachikaihin IC on Hitachinaka Toll Road
- Hitachinaka City Tourism Association
- Car parking available
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Mentai Park merges a mini-museum, souvenir shop, and cafe with the Kanefuku Mentai Factory site in Oarai. "Mentai" or "mentaiko" refers to marinated cod roe, a popular food in Japan featured in everything from pasta sauce, mayonnaise, and onigiri rice balls!
At Mentai Park, visitors can observe the production process and sample food made with mentaiko, including snacks like onigiri and ice cream! In the souvenir shop, purchase some mentaiko to take home or snag a giant mentaiko plushy of Tarapiyo, the company's mascot.
Kasama Azalea Festival
The Kasama Azalea Festival dates back to 1967 when locals launched a movement to plant as many azalea plants as the number of Kasama residents. The festival will celebrate its 50th anniversary in 2022. The festival venue, Kasama Azalea Park, is located on the side of a small mountain across seven hectares. During the azalea season, around 8500 azalea plants cover the hillside in a sea of red from late April to early May. Various events are held around the area to coincide with the festivities.
Located in the heart of Mito City, Lake Senba is a great place to relax for locals and visitors alike.
The lake is encircled by a 3-kilometer-long walking and jogging route near Kairakuen Garden and the Ibaraki Museum of Modern Art. It is the ideal route for a relaxing day of sightseeing. Bicycles and swan-shaped pedal boats are also available to rent. Moreover, there are several cafes on the lakeshore for a coffee or ice cream after your stroll.
Plenty of wildlife can be found around Lake Senba. Koi carp and terrapins inhabit the lake, while swans and other birds are seen swimming along the banks. Around 30 whooper swans make their nests at the lake between mid-October and March each year. Be sure to observe these swans from afar.
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Hitachi Seaside Park in Spring: Enjoy the Stunning Sight of Nemophila!
Hitachi Seaside Park in Ibaraki is an excellent place to enjoy seasonal flowers such as nemophila in spring and kochia in autumn. Visitors can enjoy nemophila-inspired food and outdoor fun at the family-friendly playground. This article features the park's appeals, including the nemophila flowers.
September to November is Autumn harvest time in Ibaraki, the perfect time to enjoy picking your own sweet and juicy apples straight from the tree at one of Ibaraki's many apple orchards. Temperatures between 6° and 14° are best suited to growing apples, and Ibaraki fits this criteria perfectly thanks to the wide varitation in daily temperatures. Within the prefecture, the north-western town of Daigo is known for producing delicious 'Okukuji Apples'. As well as having the perfect climate for growing apples, orchards in Daigo make sure to let their apples ripen on the tree before harvesting to get the best flavour. Head to Daigo to pick your own Okukuji Apples and find out just what all the fuss is about!
Ibaraki Flower Park: Relish More Than 900 Gorgeous Rose Varieties!
Less than a one-hour drive from the central Tokyo area will take you to Ibaraki Flower Park, where over 900 kinds of roses and various other seasonal flowers welcome visitors all year round. The park also hosts a series of activities, including (but not limited to) flower picking/arrangement classes and botanical fragrance making, meaning that the park is an absolute feast for visitors and their senses.