Japan Mt. Takao Mt. Takao

Takaosan Cable Car

Japan’s steepest cable car offers breathtaking natural vistas.

Photo of Takaosan Cable Car, Japan (高尾山ケーブルカー by 江戸村のとくぞう)

The Takaosan Cable Car is an essential aspect of Mt. Takao’s appeal, offering both convenience and scenic beauty to those journeying through the mountain’s esteemed landscapes. This steep cable car system provides access to the area’s rich spiritual heritage, found within its temples and shrines, and invites exploration of its tranquil natural trails.

About Takaosan Cable Car

In Hachioji, Tokyo, you can find the marvel of engineering that is the Takaosan Cable Car. Operated by Takaotozan Railway Co., Ltd., this cable car system is a tribute to both technological accomplishment and cultural respect. Spanning 1.020 km with a 271-meter elevation change, the journey to the Takaosan Yakuo-in Temple is as much an experience as a destination, offering views of the surrounding forest and mountainous landscape.

The inception of the Takaosan Cable Car came from Motoshi Naruhide, the 27th head priest of the temple, who sought a more accessible path for worshippers. Despite challenges like the Great Kanto Earthquake, the cable car was licensed in 1921 and began service on January 21, 1927. Its operation was interrupted in 1944 during World War II but resumed in 1949.

Today, visitors use the fourth-generation vehicles, introduced on December 23, 2008, and known as “aoba” and “momiji.” With the steepest gradient of any railway in Japan at 608‰, or 31 degrees 18 minutes, the cable car operates every 15 minutes for a quick 6-minute trip between Kiyotaki Station and Takaosan Station.

More than just transport, the Takaosan Cable Car is woven into the cultural tapestry of the mountain. On New Year’s Eve, it operates throughout the night for those visiting shrines or observing the year’s first sunrise.

The experience is enriched by additional services like souvenir photographs taken mid-descent on the lift. The cable car design accommodates all visitors, with an elevator at Takaosan Station for wheelchair access.

The experience of the cable car against the backdrop of spiritual significance, historical endurance, and natural beauty leaves a lasting impact on visitors.

For those visiting, it is advised to appreciate the engineering of the funicular and the chair lift, and to participate in the mountain’s cultural events.

For visitors looking for a more exposed journey, the Takaosan “Echo” Chair Lift is an alternative route up and down the mountain.

Getting There the easiest way to reach Takaosan Cable Car

Around Takaosan Cable Car

Takaosan Cable Car

Ropeway in Mt. Takao

open 8am - 5:15pm
closed Irregularly


高尾登山ケーブルカー, 高尾山

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Updated 13 Mar 2024 • Report an error

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