I am not sure if you have heard of this place before. But if you ever visit the beautiful Kyushu in Japan, maybe you could consider adding this place into your itinerary – the Takachiho Gorge.
My friends and I were planning our trips to Kyushu and when I saw a picture of the waterfall, I immediately included this place in my itinerary. The Gorge is located in the Miyazaki prefecture – where is mostly known for its beautiful beaches and good surfing spots, Takachiho is nestled high in the northwest, safely guarded by the mountains. Takachiho Gorge is a narrow chasm cut through the rock by the Gokase River. The peculiar sheer cliffs lining of the gorge was owing to the volcanic basalt columns form over a very long time. According to the locals, the surfaces of the cliffs look like scales of a dragon where the stone twisted and flowed along the river. Another awesome sight of the gorge is a 17-meter high Minainotaki Waterfall that was cascading down to the river in the middle of the gorge. It is impressive to witness the waterfall running on a backdrop of dense green foliage and dramatic gray cliffs.
We drove from Mount Aso early in the morning and it took about 2 hours to reach Takachiho Gorge. There are two ways to enjoy the fantastic view of the gorge. First, we got out of the car and had a great view overlooking the cliffs and river from above. The walking trails were well paved and run along the edge of the gorge. There were numerous viewpoints where tourists could stop and take beautiful pictures. At the end of the trail, we took a rest in a Japanese tea drinking shop located on the top the cliffs to enjoy some tea, udon, and a fantastic view of the gorge from afar. Then, we walked down the staircase at the south end of the gorge where we could rent a boat and row through the gorge. The water was calm and easy to navigate. We also had a closeup view of the cliffs and waterfall!
Apart from the cliffs, there are few other attractions to see like the Takachiho Shrine, freshwater aquarium, stocked fishing pond and somen restaurants (Flowing somen – catching noodles with a flowing somen slide). A small town, Takachiho is nearby where tourist may continue their journey with various bus connections, had they are not driving themselves.