Located at the foot of Mt. Ureira in Iwaizumi-cho, Iwate Prefecture, in the northeastern region of Japan, Ryusendo Cave is one of the largest and most spectacular stalactite caves in Japan and has been designated as a Japanese National Natural Monument. The cave is filled with natural scenery such as stalactites and stalagmites of various shapes, as well as four underground lakes formed by springs gushing from deep inside the cave, making the entire cave full of mystery and one of the few tourist attractions in the northeastern region.
According to relevant speculations, the entire depth of Ryusendo Cave may be more than 5,000 meters, but only more than 2,500 meters have been discovered so far. The cave has the world’s deepest underground lakes in addition to the peculiar landscapes such as stalactites and stalagmites. Four underground lakes have been discovered in Ryusendo Cave, but for the safety of visitors only the first, second and third underground lakes are open to the public, while the fourth underground lake is 120 meters deep and is said to be the deepest underground lake in the world.
The water of the underground lake is particularly clear, and with the blue-based lighting, the whole cave is filled with a mysterious and romantic atmosphere, which is very popular among tourists. Now, the spring water of Ryusendo Cave has become famous water rich in natural minerals and calcium content through precise filtration treatment, and many tourists buy this mineral water locally as a souvenir to take home.
How to get there
(1)By train or bus: JR Bus Tohoku “Morioka-Iwaizumi (Ryusendo)” from the bus stop No. 1 at the east exit of Morioka Station. 2 hours and 10 minutes (4 round trips per day) *The JR Iwaizumi Line and Iwaizumi Station will be discontinued on March 31, 2014.
(2)By Car: Tohoku Expressway, Morioka IC – Route 455 or Tohoku Expressway, Morioka Minami IC – Route 455 *takes about 2 hours
It is one of the three largest limestone caves in Japan, and together with the bats that live in the caves, it is designated as a national natural monument. Fresh water gushing from the depths of the caves forms several deep underground lakes, the third underground lake is 98 m deep, and the fourth underground lake, which is not yet open to the public, is 120 m deep (the deepest in Japan). The mysterious cave space that stretches in a straight line from the entrance and the underground lake with its abundance of clear water and “dragon blue” glow are highlights of the site.