Akiyoshidai

Akiyoshidai Plateau is Japan's largest karst plateau, and has been designated a quasi-national park (area: 4,502 hectares) and Special Natural Monument (area: 1,384 hectares).
The Akiyoshi limestone that composes the Akiyoshidai Plateau was formed about three hundred million years ago when a coral reef heaved upward as the result of movements in the earth's crust.
One property of limestone is that it dissolves in rainwater. From that property, a uniquely eroded landscape (karst landscape) was created.
That ancient coral reef evolved into a vast grassland area, which has thrived to this day.
Visitors to the Akiyoshidai Plateau can enjoy viewing a variety of scenic features throughout the four seasons.
spring spring
spring spring
Springtime, in which the grass is short, is the most comfortable and refreshing season in which to stroll the Akiyoshidai Plateau and observe its abundant plant life, including pulsatilla cernua and brakes (a type of fern).
summer summer
summer summer
In summer, the fall flowers of plants such as kawaranadeshiko (Dianthus superbus var. longicalycinus) and koniyuri (Lilium leichtlinii var. tigrinum) start to bloom. The nights are also wonderful, when visitors can enjoy beautiful starry skies and the sounds of insects.
And we can't forget the Fireworks Festival, which is held in the latter part of July. With lights and sounds spanning the grassy plains, it offers a truly spectacular summer evening.
fall fall
fall fall
In the fall the natural environment is very colorful. Along with springtime, fall is a wonderful season in which to enjoy the beauty of flowers. At the end of October, swertia, gentian, grass-of-Parnassus, and tufts of Japanese silver grass shine in the sunlight. Also at this time of year, fog covers the grassy plain in early morning. In October a Karst Walk through the Akiyoshidai Plateau is held.
winter winter
winter winter
From late fall into winter, the beauty of the dry grassy plain is impressive. On the third Sunday in February each year, a "mountain-burning event" is held in which flames spread across the grassy plain. After the mountain-burning event, plants such as senbonyari (Leibnitzia anandria) and beniyamatake (Hygrocybe coccinea) grow again on the scorched ground surface as spring begins on the Akiyoshidai Plateau.