New route map of the Shiretoko goko lakes

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Bear aware season
Period Ecosystem aware season
(Park opening to May 9)

Bear aware season
(May 10 to July 31)
Ecosystem aware season
(August 1 to October 20)
Open to all visitors
(October 21 to Park Closing)
elevated wooden path Always free of charge during the season! No advance procedures are required when walking to Lake 1st and back.
(The walkway does not connect to the ground pathway.)
ground pathway Fee charged (Requires lecture attendance)
Long‐route (Lake 5th to Lake 1st, 3km walk, approx. 90 minutes)
Fee charged (Guided tour requires advance reservation)
(Lake 5th to Lake 1st, 3km walk, approx. 180 minutes)
Fee charged (Requires lecture attendance)
Long‐route (Lake 5th to Lake 1st, 3km walk, approx. 90 minutes)
No charge
Long‐route
Fee charged (Requires lecture attendance)
Short‐route (Lake 2nd to Lake 1st, 1.6km walk, approx. 40 minutes)
Fee charged (Requires lecture attendance)
Short‐route (Lake 2nd to Lake 1st, 1.6km walk, approx. 40 minutes)

No charge

Short‐route

Shiretoko goko lakes visitation system

There have been issues at the Shiretoko goko lakes such as encroachment on vegetation due to crowds and the danger of bears appearing, frequently causing the trails to be closed to visitors. (In 2007, the ground pathway could be used only 98.5 days.)
To resolve these issues and ensure that visitors can experience nature on a deeper level, we started a new system based on the Regulated Utilization Area System outlined in the National Parks Law of Japan.

Elevated wooden path Visitors can stroll to Lake 1st.

Elevated wood walkway of 800 meters in length and 2-5 meters in height was completed in 2010. Bears cannot climb onto the walkway due to 7000V electric barriers along the sides.
Visitors in wheelchairs can also safely enjoy the Shiretoko goko lakes. Can be used anytime during the visitation season.

More details about the elevated wooden path »

Ground pathway Visitors can stroll around the lakes

Ground pathway Different visitation rules depending on the period

Period Name Route
Park opening to May 9 Ecosystem aware season Walk freely after attending a simple lecture (fee charged).
May 10 to July 31 Bear aware season Led by licensed guide with knowledge of environmental safety and experience in handling bears (fee charged)
August 1 to October 20 Ecosystem aware season Walk freely after attending a simple lecture (fee charged).
October 21 to Park Closing Open to all visitors The pathway will be closed for safety if a bear appears in the area.

Ground pathway »

Regulated Utilization Area System

This system aims to maintain biodiversity , beautiful scenery in national parks, and ensure by controling the number of visitors.
To enter the Regulated Utilization Area during the period set by the Ministry of the Environment, a visitor must apply for permission to the Ministry of the Environment (or an organization designated by the Ministry of the Environment).