Fukuroda Falls (Daigo Town)
At a staggering 120m in height and 70m wide, it's easy to see why Fukuroda Falls is one of Ibaraki's most popular destinations. There are several levels of observation platform to allow visitors to feel the power of the falls up-close as well as a bridge over the river at the base of the falls.
The falls are particularly stunning during the Autumn when the surrounding mountains are transformed by fiery Autumn colours, although the dramatic icy spectacle of the frozen falls during the Winter months gives Autumn a run for its money!
There are also plenty of restaurants and souvenir shops in the town around the falls as well as hiking trails and hot springs in the wider Fukuroda area, making it the perfect destination for a daytrip from the city. Don't forget to sample some of the area's famous apple pie, baked using locally grown apples.
Ryujin Suspension Bridge (Hitachiota City)
This 100m high dragon-inspired suspension bridge towers dramatically over the mountainous landscape of northern Ibaraki. The bridge offers panoramic views of the area including the wild cherry blossoms which dot the mountainsides during the Spring and the dramatic Autumn foliage. And that's not all - the bridge is also home to Japan's highest bungy jump.
If thrills aren't your thing, there are also plenty of hiking trails and soba restaurants in the area.
Kochia at Hitachi Seaside Park
Kochia plants are grown from July to the end of October on a large hill in Hitachi Seaside Park. The kochia are green at first, but the most popular time for viewing them is mid-October, when they turn scarlet red. For a week in August, the green kochia-covered hill is lit up in the evening, creating a colorful dream-like world.For more information
Ibaraki Prefectural Archives & Museum (Mito City)
Ibaraki Prefectural Archives & Museum is situated in spacious grounds near Mito City's Kairakuen Gardens. The museum's exhibits showcase the history of the Ibaraki area from prehistoric times to the present day, and the museum also hosts special exhibitions six times a year.
During November, the museum grounds are filled with bright yellow Autumn gingko leaves, one of the highlights of Autumn in Japan. The museum grounds are also home to historical buildings from the Edo and Meiji Periods.
Tsuchiura All Japan Fireworks Competition (Tsuchiura City)
The Tsuchiura All Japan Fireworks Competition take place on the first Saturday in October every year and attracts around 700,000 people! More than 20,000 festival are launched during the show so it's hard to choose a best bit but the 'star mine' fireworks at 7:00pm are one of the highlights of the show!For more information
Mount Tsukuba (Tsukuba City)
At 877m tall, the distinctive twin peaks of Mount Tsukuba are one of the symbols of Ibaraki. Mount Tsukuba is accessible in less than 2 hours from Tokyo, the mountain is the perfect place to escape the city and get outdoors. There are variety of hiking trails to choose from, with plenty of options for beginners. If hiking isn't for you, there is also the option to take a cable car or rope way to the summit.
Mount Tsukuba Shrine is located on the lower slopes of the mountain and is the perfect stop-off on a trip to Mount Tsukuba.
Hananuki Gorge (Takahagi City)
This unique landscape features a series of waterfalls which cascade downstream through a series of pools and dams. The gorge's biggest draw is the 60m long Shiomi Falls Suspension Bridge with its stunning views of the nearby waterfalls and lush forested hills surrounding the gorge.
During November, Autumn foliage transforms the gorge into a sea of fiery reds and yellows and the suspension bridge is carpeted with fallen Autumn leaves. Summer is another great time to visit - grab your swim wear and take a plunge into the natural waterfall pools, or relax with a friends at the barbecue area.
Nishikanasago Soba no Sato, Soba Koubou
Soba is noodles made from buckwheat flour. The Kanasago area is famous for its high-quality buckwheat, which features a good flavor and aroma. Nishkanasago Soba no Sato has a simple lodge called Momiji-so, a water mill, and a folk museum. You can try making soba in their workshop.
Ishioka no Matsuri Festival (Ishioka City)
Ishioka no Matsuri Festival is one of the Kanto region's three greatest festivals. The highlight of the festival is the parade which features traditional 'shishi' lion dances, festival floats and mikoshi portable shrines. This festival is also a great chance to experience a sumo wrestling match - during the festival, special sumo events take place at Hitachinokuni Soshagu Shrine.
There's loads to see at the festival, but don't forget to make time to sample some of the many street foods available! As one of Kanto's biggest festivals, Ishioka no Matsuri is one of the best places to sample the highlights of Japanese street food and the latest food trends.
Kasama Chrysanthemum Festival
Kasama Inari Shrine／Kasama City
From late October to late November, the Kasama Chrysanthemum Festival is held at Kasama Inari Shrine. The festival has a history of over 110 years, which makes it the oldest chrysanthemum festival in Japan. Nearly 10,000 potted chrysanthemums are displayed throughout the shrine grounds, and, in particular, dolls and decorations skillfully made using chrysanthemums draw lots of visitors. Some traditional events such as yabusame (horseback archery) and Shinto rituals with music are also held during the festival.For more information
The season for pear picking is from mid-August to late September. Ibaraki pears are juicy, with a crisp texture, and Ibaraki is one of the major pear producers in Japan.
Late June to early October is the best time to harvest grapes. On a tourist farm you can try picking bunches of grapes and eat them on-site. Various kinds of grapes, from kyoho to shine muscat grapes, are available.
Apples are picked from September to November. Ibaraki’s apples are mainly grown in the northern area of the prefecture, where the climate is cooler. The apples in Ibaraki are big and sweet with a pleasant aroma.
Chestnuts are gathered from early September to mid-October. Ibaraki’s quality chestnuts are big and smell sweet. Japanese people usually eat chestnuts after baking or boiling them, and they are used in producing various kinds of processed sweets.