Kochi is blessed with natural beauty. Shikoku"s most famous rivers, the Shimanto, the Yoshino, and the Niyodo all run through mountain-ringed Kochi, producing stunning waterfalls. Three of those waterfalls rank among Japan"s top 100. They are very popular as sightseeing and relaxation spots.
Halfway up Mr. Kajigamori is "Ryuono Falls" or "Dragon King Falls," a waterfall surrounded by gigantic, multi-century-old cedar trees. A seemingly magical, beautiful place, the water drops more than 20 meters from the falls into the basin below. In winter, the falls freeze over, creating an austere scene. There are legends about the falls as well. One tale tells of a beautiful girl who transforms into a giant snake. Another legend holds that this is the place where the Japanese monk, Kukai, trained.
"Ootaru-no-Taki" or "Large Barrel Falls" is located along Otarudani River, a tributary of the Niyodo River. It owes its name to its powerful current, like barrels of water going over the falls. The beautiful, clear water runs along exposed granite before a stunning 34-meter drop down to the water basin below.
"Todoroki-no-Taki" or "Thunder Falls" is 82 meters tall, and the sparkling blue falls consist of three connected tiers. A virgin forest thrives beside the falls. Visitors can enjoy the way the scenery changes with the four seasons; cherry blossoms are visible in the spring, lush greenery in the summer, and colorful fall foliage in the autumn. Additionally, these falls are associated with the sad legend of a princess kidnapped by a giant serpent.
There are many other beautiful waterfalls as well. The basin of the "Nikobuchi" falls is a part of the drainage system for the Niyodo River, and is filled with aquamarine, "Niyodo Blue" water so otherworldly and gorgeous that it leaves visitors speechless. It is relatively well known among those in the know as a good spot for viewing "Niyodo Blue" water as it"s meant to be seen. Its mysterious colors change, appearing emerald green or blue depending on the weather and the light, mesmerizing visitors.