Ranzan, Healing Town with Greenery and Pure Water
Ranzan is located almost right in the center of Saitama Prefecture within 60 km of central Tokyo. The major part of town is located on the Hiki Hills, which creates a varied landscape with mountains, a gorge and plateau. Furthermore, the area was known as the birthplace of Bando Musha (warriors from the eastern Japan) that produced Yoshinaka Kiso and Shigetada Hatakeyama, famous warriors from the end of the Heian to the Kamakura period.
In the early Showa period, when the first academic doctor of forestry, Seiroku Honda, visited this town overlooking the Tsukikawa River, he was impressed with the scenery and made a remark, “This place resembles to Arashiyama in Kyoto.” Musashi Ranzan later became the official name of the town when the government implemented the new municipal system. Today, Ranzan is a popular town with its greenery and clear water.
Sightseeing Highlights in Ranzan
A beautiful scenic area produced by the surrounding gorge and row of mountains. The town is named after this gorge. In 1998, this location was certified as the “Saitama Greenery Trust” due to its rich natural environment and became publicly-owned land.
100 Great Castles in Japan Part Two (Old Site of Sugaya Yakata; National Historical Site)
The Old Site of Sugaya Yakata was selected as one of Japan’s 100 Greatest Castles: Part Two, along with Sugiyama Castle. The castle was lived in by one of the famous warlords from the Kamakura period, Shigetada Hatakeyama and is constructed on flat land exhibiting a dynamic presence. On the premises, there is a museum of historical sites of Ranzan run by Saitama Prefecture.
Kamagata Hachiman Shrine
Great Purple Emperor Butterfly Park
This park is a trove of small creatures, especially the national butterfly of Japan, with the Great Purple Emperor (National Butterfly of Japan) as the highlight. Visitors can learn about nature in their biotope space.
Cherry Blossom along Tokigawa River Bank
Along a 2-km length of the Tokigawa River, a total of 252 Somei Yoshino cherry trees were planted in an arching line. Every year, the Ranzan Cherry Blossom Festival is held from the end of March through early April. Many people come to the festival to have a great time.
Ranzan Gorge Barbecue Site
100 Great Castles in Japan Part Two (Old Site of Sugiyama Castle; National Historical Site)
Sugiyama Castle, a National Historical Site, was selected as one of the Japan’s 100 Greatest Castles: Part Two due to its highly acclaimed historical value amongst castles all over Japan. Sugiyama Castle was built on a steep mountain during the Sengoku period. Since its architectural design and structure is so skillfully constructed, it is often acclaimed as the “best example of a castle structure” and “the best castle built during the Sengoku period.”
Important Annual Events in Ranzan
Ranzan Festival (Jidai Matsuri Festival)
A variety of fun events are planned related to agriculture, tourism, culture, performing arts, community activity and welfare. Among them, especially the parade of Yoroi Musha warriors, a live performance of the matchlock gun and Yabusame, an acrobatic performance while mounted on a horse, are guaranteed to entertain the audience.
Food & Specialties of Ranzan
Local Sake “Omurasaki”
This is a supreme Ginjo-shu made by a skilled Nanbu Toji sake specialist group, using fine quality rice harvested in Ranzan and natural water from the Chichibu district.
“Ranzan’s Speciality” at Ajisai Kobo
Ajisai Kobo is a group which produces a variety of food items using fresh vegetables grown in the Ranzan area. They welcome visitors with their delicious “Ranzan Food,” such as miso (fermented soybean paste), vegetables, Tansan Manju sweet buns, Oyaki crackers, handmade udon noodles, Karinto sweet crackers and much more.
Imo Yokan “Murasaki Imo” “Beni Azuma”
These sweets are made with the local sweet potato which is certified as a special agricultural crop by Saitama Prefecture. Their sophisticated taste lets consumers discover the natural sweetness of sweet potato.
*Available period is limited.
- Musashi Ranzan Station on the Tobu Tojo Line
- Business Support Section, Ranzan Town Hall
- TEL：0493-62-0720 / FAX：0493-62-0713
- URL： http://www.town.ranzan.saitama.jp/