Discover the Best Autumn Hakuba Cycling Routes for Adventures

Discover the Best Autumn Hakuba Cycling Routes for Adventures

Hakuba is a must-visit destination for any avid cyclist.

Cycling Japan is a unique adventure. Experience the countryside firsthand as you cycle through picturesque landscapes and charming villages.

With its natural beauty, Hakuba provides an ideal setting for an unforgettable cycling adventure, and the Fall is a fantastic time to visit.

There’s something magical about cycling through Hakuba in the Fall.

With various routes and vibrant fall foliage, Hakuba offers breathtaking vistas of the Northern Japan Alps that are hard to beat.

Discover the best autumn Hakuba cycling routes in this article, and prepare for your next adventure!

Why Hakuba For Your Fall Cycling Holiday?

Hakuba is a popular destination for cycling enthusiasts, and for good reason. The stunning mountain views, picturesque village, and peaceful countryside make it the perfect place to explore on two wheels. But what sets Hakuba apart as an autumn cycling destination?

Vibrant Fall Foliage

One of the main reasons to visit Hakuba in the Fall is the foliage. As temperatures cool, the leaves of the maple trees turn brilliant shades of red, orange, and yellow, creating a breathtaking natural canvas. Cycling through this colorful landscape is a truly unforgettable experience.

Natural Beauty at its Best

Hakuba is renowned for its stunning natural landscapes. The autumn season adds an extra layer of beauty with its colorful foliage, making every turn of the pedal a visual delight. Cycling allows you to fully immerse yourself in this picturesque environment, taking in sights often missed when traveling by car through rural Japan.

Mild Weather

Autumn in Hakuba brings mild temperatures, making it ideal for cycling. The air is refreshing but not too cold for outdoor activities. This also means fewer tourists compared to the peak summer season, giving you more room on the roads and trails to enjoy your ride fully.

Variety of Routes

Hakuba offers a diverse range of cycling routes suitable for all levels of riders. From leisurely flat rides along rice fields and rivers to challenging climbs through mountain passes, there’s something for everyone. Consider combining different routes to create your unique cycling adventure.

The Best Autumn Hakuba Cycling Routes

Here are some of the best autumn Hakuba cycling routes

Otari – Tsugaike Nature Park Hill Climb Route

Best Autumn Hakuba Cycle Routes - Hakuba -Kinasa - Otari Nature Park Hill Climb
  • Length: 16km
  • Elevation Change: 820m

This challenging hill climb course offers a magnificent view of the Hakuba mountain ranges. The Tsugaike Nature Park is one of Japan’s greatest highlands and offers spectacular views whatever the season. The cycling route starts at the base of the Tsugaike ski resort and follows the access road to the Tsugaike Nature Park entrance. If you’re looking for a more significant challenge, start the route at Hakuba Oike station for an added 400m of vertical.

Salt Road Route

Best Autumn Hakuba Cycle Routes - Otari to Omachi Salt Road
  • Length: 44 km
  • Elevation Change: +715/-870

The Hakuba Valley Salt Road is a beautiful scenic cycling route that follows a section of the historic trade route used to transport salt from the Sea to central Japan. This 44km route offers a mix of flat sections and gentle climbs, with stunning views of the surrounding landscape. You’ll also pass by traditional Japanese houses and farm fields. The route offers a beautiful autumn experience as you travel from north to south through the valley.

Matsu Kawa – Oide – Minekata Suwa Jinja – Hakuba Route

Best Autumn Hakuba Cycle Routes - Hakuba -Kinasa - Ogawa - Kizakiko - Aokiko Loop
Source: Bike Tour Japan
  • Length: 75km
  • Elevation Change: 1400m

This loop is a favorite cycling route in the area, which features three significant climbs, each with an elevation gain of approximately 1400 meters. The journey begins with a climb from Hakuba through Oide Park to the quaint mountain village of Kinasa. From Kinasa you head to the hamlet of Miasa before heading back towards the picturesque Lake Aokiko. The loop concludes with a scenic return through the rice fields back to Hakuba Village.

Aokiko – Matsukawa – Hakuba Village Loop

Best Autumn Hakuba Cycle Routes - Aokiko Matsukawa Hakuba Loop (1)
Source: Events Hakuba
  • Length: 38km
  • Elevation Change: +210/-210

This cycling path starts from Hakuba Station and takes you south towards Lake Aokiko. The initial segment is a gentle ride, passing through scenic rice fields. Traveling around Lake Aokiko, you’ll be mesmerized by the pristine mountain waters and beautiful fall leaves surrounding the lake. The bike tour then loops back through Hakuba, offering picturesque views of the village and resorts. At the Matsukawa River, you will turn east and follow the trail along the river. Finally, you loop back to your starting point at Hakuba Station, completing this scenic journey.


Cycling through Hakuba in the Fall combines the best of nature, history, and community. With routes catering to all skill levels, there’s something for everyone. Whether after scenic beauty, historical landmarks, or the serenity of the Japanese Alps, Hakuba offers a unique cycling experience you won’t forget.

If you’re ready to explore the best cycling routes Hakuba offers, don’t wait. Plan your trip now and experience the magic of autumn in Hakuba. Happy cycling!


What is the best time for a Hakuba cycling trip?

Cycling season starts in Hakuba as early as March, when the snow melts on the roads, and runs until mid-November. Routes up the mountain, like the Otari – Tsugaike Nature Park, don’t open until late May.

Are there any guided bike tours available in Hakuba?

Yes, several bike tour companies offer guided cycling tours in Hakuba. These tours range from leisurely rides to more challenging routes, and some even include specialized equipment like e-bikes.

Do I need to bring my own bike to Hakuba?

While you can bring your own bike, several bike shops in Hakuba offer a range of rental bikes suitable for different skill levels and preferences. Rental options include road bikes and mountain bikes.

Are there Onsen in Hakuba?

After a long day of biking, visiting an onsen hot springs to dip in the soothing waters is an essential experience for every cyclist. Hakuba has many options, such as Happo no Yu, Sierra Resort Hotel, and Hakuba Highland, which are some popular options.

Where to stay in Hakuba?

Hakuba has a variety of accommodations, including traditional Japanese inns, Hotels, and self-contained apartments.

Is Japan suitable for cycling?

Yes, Japan is an excellent country for a cycling trip. It has well-developed cycling infrastructure in both urban and rural areas. Book a bike tour when you visit Japan to experience exceptional cycle touring.

What other activities can I do in Hakuba?

Aside from cycling, there are many other activities to enjoy in Hakuba, such as hiking, skiing/snowboarding (during the winter season), visiting shrines and temples, trying local cuisine, and more.

Are there any cycling rules in Japan?

Yes, cyclists should be aware of several cycling rules in Japan. These include riding on the left side of the road, following traffic signals and signs, using hand signals when turning or stopping, and having proper lights and reflectors when riding at night. It is also important to note that cycling under the influence of alcohol is strictly prohibited. Be sure to stay aware of Japanese drivers and fellow cyclists.