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Release | Fumiko Magota

Take a walk at Hell Valley in Noboribetsu to see white smokes from boiling Onsen

With 3,000 liters/minute of different hot springs such as sulfur spring and iron spring, Hell Valley (Jigokudani) is the source of hot spring of one of Hokkaido’s biggest onsen resort Noboribetsu. From the promenade, you can take a close look of hot smokes from the bare surface and hot spring river. 


There is a walk in Hell Valley

1.5-hour drive from Sapporo using Hokkaido Expressway or 50 minutes from Shin-Chitose Airport.  Walking up the slope from Noboribetsu Onsen resort, over “Daiichitaki Honkan”, you can see the “Hell Valley (Jigokudani)”. 

Hell Valley is surrounded by mountains and looks like a mortar. This is the ruin of explosion crater from Kuttara Volcano activities. 


It’s about 450 meters diameter and 11 hectares large. 

There are 568 meters long wooden path around the Hell Valley (Hell Valley Promenade), which takes 40 to 50 minutes if you go around and 20 - 30 minutes to go to iron spring pond and come back.  



There was an incredible scenery in front of me!

The area is like a wasteland created by rocks and mountains. There are rocks colored gray, yellow, and green from the components of hot springs, smokes are around everywhere, and smells like sulfur. 



I heard a sound of water flowing and looked back. That was a light gray colored hot spring river with smokes.

▲(filmed by FUKKO)


On a sunny day, it shines like aluminum foil depending on the angle. This scenery is somewhat surreal. 


The boiling 80 degrees geyser

You can see the boiling 80 degrees geyser at the iron spring pond at the end of the promenade. (Few minutes cycle approximately but the cycle changes)

As I looked from behind the fence… see how it was in the video below!

▲(filmed by FUKKO)

It looks like a Hell’s boiling pot drawn in paintings of Hell. 

By the way, Oni living in Noboribetsu is called “Yukijin” (the Oni god of hot spring) and said to take away the bad luck of people to wish happiness. Yukijin is actually a god having the figure of Oni, so no need to get scared! 


There is also a free volunteer guide

In Hokkaido, where we get lots of snow, many outdoor facilities close in winter, but this facility is open all year, and you can take a walk in winter, too. 

Frost and snow freeze, creating sparkling lights in the mid-winter. You can enjoy greens from the end of June to September and autumn colors from mid-October to late October. Hell Valley offers different scenery in each season. 

冬の登別の地獄谷▲How Hell Valley looks like in winter (photo by FUKKO)

There is a local volunteer guide wearing green Happi standing around the area from 10 AM to 3 PM, from the end of April to end of October. They provide sightseeing guides for free so talk to them casually. You can hear lots of interesting stories. 

  • Take a walk at Hell Valley in Noboribetsu to see white smokes from boiling Onsen

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Fumiko Magota