Lake Tōya

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Lake Tōya
130922 Lake Toya Toyako Hokkaido Japan03s3.jpg
Lake Tōya (September 2013)
Location Iburi Subprefecture, Hokkaidō
Coordinates 42°34′44″N 140°51′16″E / 42.57889°N 140.85444°E / 42.57889; 140.85444Coordinates: 42°34′44″N 140°51′16″E / 42.57889°N 140.85444°E / 42.57889; 140.85444
Type oligotrophic crater lake
Primary inflows Ō River (大川, Ō-gawa), Sōbetsu River (ソウベツ 川, Sōbetsu-gawa)
Primary outflows Sōbetsu River (壮瞥川, Sōbetsu-gawa)
Basin countries Japan
Max. length 10 km (6.2 mi)
Max. width 9 km (5.6 mi)
Surface area 70.7 km2 (27.3 sq mi)
Average depth 117.0 m (383.9 ft)
Max. depth 180 m (590 ft) [1]
Water volume 8.19 km3 (1.96 cu mi)
Shore length1 46 km (29 mi)[2]
Surface elevation 84 m (276 ft)
Frozen never
Islands Nakano-shima
Settlements Sōbetsu, Hokkaidō, Tōyako, Hokkaidō
References [1][2]
1 Shore length is not a well-defined measure.

Lake Tōya (洞爺湖, Tōya-ko) is a volcanic caldera lake in Shikotsu-Toya National Park, Abuta District, Hokkaidō, Japan. It is a part of "Toya Caldera and Usu Volcano Global Geopark" which joins in Global Geoparks Network. The stratovolcano of Mount Usu lies on the southern rim of the caldera. The lake is nearly circular, being 10 kilometers in diameter from east-west and 9 kilometers from North-South. The lake's biggest town, Tōyako is located on its western shore. The town Sōbetsu is located on the other side of the lake.

Tōya Caldera
Lake Tōya, Tōya town and volcano Usu

Lake Tōya is said to be the northernmost lake in Japan that never ices (with competing claim by nearby Lake Shikotsu), and the second most transparent lake in Japan. Nakajima Island (not to be confused with another island of the same name in Lake Kussharo) is an island in the middle of the lake which houses the Tōya Lake Forest Museum.

Lake Tōya was called Kim'un-to (キウン (kim'un) means "in the mountain"[3] and ト (to) means "lake"[3]) by the Ainu. In the Meiji era, Japanese pioneers named the lake Tōya after the Ainu expression to ya, which means "lakeland".[3]

The 2008 G8 Summit was held at Lake Tōya and The Windsor Hotel Toya Resort & Spa.

In popular culture[edit]

Lake Toya's Surrounding[edit]

Surrounding Lake Toya, there are numerous parks with each of their own unique character and charm that can be enjoyed. There are also numerous walking trails along the lake to take a stroll in, such as the Waterfront Forest Lane (Takarada Nature Observation Trail) and the Nishiyama Sanroku Crater Trail. There are also onsen managed by the town of Toyako, available to be used while enjoying the views of Lake Toya. Footbaths around the lake are also accessible for use. Uniquely, vending machines near the onsen offer spring water that can be taken to be used at home.[4]


  1. ^ a b Geographical Survey Institute map 25000:1 洞爺
  2. ^ a b Bisignani, J.D. (December 1993). Taran March, ed. Japan Handbook (Second ed.). Chico, California: Moon Publications, Inc. p. 781. ISBN 0-918373-70-0.
  3. ^ a b c Batchelor, John. (1905) An Ainu-English-Japanese Dictionary (Second ed.). Tokyo: Methodist Publishing House
  4. ^ "Lake Toya - Hokkaido Travel Guide | Planetyze". Planetyze. Retrieved 2018-01-29.

External links[edit]