English Located on the mountain top of Fujiyoshida City in the Yamanashi prefecture, the Chureito Pagoda is part of the Arakusa Sengen Shrine and was built as a peace memorial in 1963. This gorgeous five-storey pagoda can be reached after climbing around 400 steps and, once there, will give you one of the most breathtaking […]

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English Along with Hitachi Seaside Park’s Nemophila Harmony Festival, the Fuji Shibazakura Festival is yet another extremely popular flower festival located near Lake Motsu at the base of Mt. Fuji. Each year for one month, mid-April to mid-May, people across Japan and from all over the world come in their thousands to enjoy a beautiful […]

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Located in Nagano and close to Matsumoto and it’s gorgeous castle, the Daio Wasabi Farm is one of Japan’s largest wasabi farms. It is a very popular tourist destination for both wasabi lovers and fans of the 1989 movie “Dreams”, directed by the late great Akira Kurosawa, that used the location’s unique scenery as the […]

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Established in 1434 by the 12th Kiso lord Nobumichi, Kōzen-ji Temple, also known as Kozenji, is a Rinzai buddhist Myoshinji temple of the Kiso and Yamakura clans. Small in size, this temple comes with many little wonders in the form of four different gardens with the Syoryu Garden, Shyumisen Garden, Mansho Garden and Kanuntei Garden […]

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As a result of centuries of erosion cutting the granite bedrock it is only recently, and after the flow of the river had been lowered due to hydropower construction, that the gorgeous Nezame No Toko scenery was unveiled to us all! Located near the Agemmatsu village, Nezame No Toko is today a nationally designated scenic […]

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The third and last major post town alongside the Nakasendo Highway section of the Kiso Valley is Magome-Juku. Unlike Narai-Juku and Tsumago-Juku which are both located in Nagano , Magome-Juku is located in Gifu prefecture. It has also been completely restored to better accommodate tourists, but this makes Magome-Juku the least authentic post town of […]

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Like Narai-Juku, Tsumago is yet another famous post town alongside the Nakasendo Highway section of the Kiso Valley during the Edo period that linked Kyoto to Edo, known now as… Tokyo. Unlike Narai-Juku however, Tsumago-Juku is one of the best preserved post towns in Japan and its residents have gone to great lengths to protect […]

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Located in the southwestern part of Nagano prefecture, Narai-Juku was once a section of this historic Nakasendo Highway connecting Kyoto with Edo (presently known as Tokyo). Because of its strategic location between both cities, Narai-Juku quickly became one of the wealthiest towns in the Kiso Valley. While similar in its historical role to Tsumago and […]

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Also known as Atamijo, this “castle” is in fact a pure tourist attraction that was built in 1959 on a mountain top overlooking the city of Atami, despite the fact that Atami never had any castle in its history! To be fair, Atamijo is a good looking castle from the outside and with a stunning […]

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Located in Atami City’s center and originally built by a shipping magnate in 1919, Kiun-kaku (also known as Kiunkaku) served until 1947 as a private villa to different owners including the railroad tycoon Kaichiro Nezu. It’s interesting to note here that Kaichiro also happens to be the original owner of the Nezu garden and museum […]

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Founded in 807 AD by the famous Japanese Saint Kobo, or Kobo Daishi one of the greatest founders of Buddhism in Japan. Shuzenzi Temple is also one of the oldest temples in Shizuoka. While small in size, Shuzenji temple also offers visitors the chance to visit a small museum, featuring many artefacts. Until 1995 it […]

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Despite being “lost” in the middle of the mountains of Izu peninsula, Shuzenji is a well known tourist destination for both Japanese and foreigners alike. Indeed Shuzenji is one of the oldest and most famous hot spring resort towns on the whole peninsula! Like the Japanese tradition dictates, there is no onsen without ryokan and […]

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