My heart beat faster as we continued pedaling. The highway road took us through dense mountain forests where sunlight shone through towering pine trees, forming strange shapes. The fresh cool wind stroked my hair.
We turned onto a small lane lined with rolls of chestnut tress. There was no other sound but our tires crashing over spiky chestnuts on the ground. I could scent the musky, earthy smell of rotten leaves in the air.
The bumpy pathway led us to a bridge and onto a small village road. We rode pass houses, gardens, animal sheds and grass field along the lake shore.
We reached the Statue of Tatsuko and were awarded with the gorgeous vista of the sapphire-blue water. We stood there in silence watching the lake changed color as the warm orange ray of the sun painted the water.
- Tazawa Lake is located in Akita Prefecture and is the deepest lake in Japan at 423 meters.
- According to the legend, Tatsuko was a beautiful girl who wished for the eternal beauty. She drank water from a holy spring and instead turned into a guardian dragon of Tazawa Lake.
- Tatsuko dragon had a dragon lover Hachiro from Lake Hachirogata. Hachiro would visit Tatsuko in Tazawa Lake every winter. Because of their deep and warm love, despite the most freezing winter of Tazawako area, Tazawa Lake never freezes.
Getting There and Around
- Take Akita Shinkansen to JR Tazawako Station (3 hours).
- From Tazawako Station there is regular bus from to Tazawa Lake (Tazawako Round Trip).
Biking – The bike shop is located near the bus stop. Bike rentals are available hourly or daily. The route around Tazawa Lake is 20km (13 miles) in circumference and is fairly easy with some hills. It takes about two hours to complete the route.
Swimming – Swimming beaches are a couple of minutes walk from the bus stop.