鳴沢氷穴

Narusawa-hyōketsu - Narusawa Fuketsu - Narusawa Wind Cave - Narusawa Ice Cave


Useful Information

Location: Narusawa. On the slopes of Mt. Fuji.
(35.474722, 138.666389)
Open: All year daily 10:30-16:30, last entry 16.
[2021]
Fee: Adults JPY 350, Children JPY 200.
Groups (15+): Adults JPY 250, Junior High School JPY 200, Children JPY 100.
[2021]
Classification: Speleologylava tube SpeleologyIce cave
Light: electric.
Dimension: L=137m, T=-2°C/+3°C, A=1,120m asl., Ice V=3000m³.
Guided tours: L=153m, D=10min.
Photography:
Accessibility:
Bibliography:
Address: Narusawa Fuketsu, 8533 Narusawa, Narusawa-mura, Minamitsuru-gun, Yamanashi, 401-0320, Tel: +81-555-85-3089, Tel: +81-555-85-2301, Fax: +81-555-85-3497.
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.

History

864 lava tube formed during a volcanic eruption of Mt. Fuji by the Aokigahara Maruo lava stream.
1929 designated a Natural Monument of Japan.

Description

鳴沢氷穴 (Narusawa Hyoketsu Ice Cave) is an ice cave, with temperatures between -2°C and +3°C it contains ice during the whole year. There are 90cm long ice stalactites hanging from the ceiling. A mighty layer of ice is up to six meters thick, at places the ice was used to create sculptures. The ice-covered section has an ice volume of 3000m³. During the Edo time (17th to 19th century) the ice was collected and used for cooling food. During the Taishō time (early 20th century) the cave was used to store the cocoons of Bombyx mori, the domestic silk moth. Today the cave is a show cave and is especially popular in hot summers, when up to 4,300 people visit the cave daily. The cave is easy to visit, but it has some narrow and some rather low spots.

The low temperature and the formation of ice is a result of the form of the entrance. The lava tube is entered through the collapsed part of the ceiling and lies 21m below the surface. So there is a depression, where the cold air from Mt. Fuji flows in during winter and in cold nights. Then it gets trapped in the cave, as cold air is heavier than warm air.

The cave is located at the Aokigahara forest, in the part that belongs to Narusawa Village, hence the name. Sometimes it is misnamed Fuji Cave. At the northern foot of Mount Fuji there are numerous lava tubes. The three larger caves, Narusawa Ice Cave, Fugaku Wind Cave and Lake Sai Bat Cave were designated a Natural Monument of Japan together in 1929.