8 May 2020

Story in Yamagata Zao

By Farhan Kriswandwi

This is the story when I went to Zao Yamagata during my winter break in February 2020. The trip is done before the Coronavirus emergency situation declaration in Japan. I went there with my friends that I met in Sendai during my exchange semester at Tohoku University. One of them is Shogo, a guy from Aomori Prefecture. He is my tutor during my first semester at Tohoku University. He is a nice guy but very shy for the first time.

Now, let’s go to the detail regarding the journey from Sendai to Yamagata. I went there using the train Senzan Line from Sendai station to Yamagata station, it was around 1 hour and a half ride. The train is on time from Sendai station just like the usual train schedule in Japan.

5 of us arrived in Yamagata Station, unfortunately, I did not take any picture when we are in Sendai Station. (From Left to Right: Yuzuki, Tan, Kenneth, Me, and Shogo.)

After the ride from Sendai station, we arrived in Yamagata station. We are very lucky because Yuzuki mother is very nice and pick up us in Yamagata station and giving us a free ride from Yamagata station to Mount Zao.

Mount Zao is one of the famous mountains in Yamagata Prefecture, I went there and go to the top of Mount Zao and it was really cold there the wind is very strong and there is a lot of snow there. Before we go to the top of the mountain, we are going to the middle level of the mountain where we eat some foods. I ate some noodles in the restaurant there, I choose Udon because it helped me to warm my body. The temperature there is very cold and the wind is blowing like crazy.

Beef Konyaku Udon
One of the picture that I took in Mount Zao. This is on the middle level of the mountain.

After we finish our meals, we go to the top level using the cable car from the middle station to the top level of Mount Zao. The wind in there is more crazy than the middle level and there are a lot of snow there.

The wind is so strong. But it was so fun there.
Kudos to the person who took this picture for us.

We enjoy our time there in Mount Zao, after we finish we went to the Onsen near Mount Zao to warm our body. It was a new experience for me to try Onsen in Mount Zao. It was a good experience just like I went to an Onsen in Kumamoto Prefecture. Unfortunately, I did not take any picture in front of the Onsen and do not have any picture to show.

At the end of our trip, Yuzuki mothers escort us back to the station. Before we went to the station, she took us to the castle in Yamagata. Kaminoyama Castle (上山城, Kaminoyama-jō) is the name of the castle we visit. It is a nice castle with a white colour similar to Odawara Castle (小田原城, Odawara-jō) in Kanagawa Prefecture a castle that I visited when I was in Kanagawa Prefecture.  I cannot go inside because it is already close when we arrived but I manage to take this picture.

Kaminoyama Castle from outside.

After that, we went back to the station to go back to Sendai station. It was a very good experience to visit Yamagata Prefecture. It was very tiring and some of us slept on the train.

Trip back to Sendai station.

That is all. We arrived in Sendai station and went back to our room.