Maze Village(currently merged into Gero city), one of the most beautiful villages in Japan, is located at Hida region where famous town Takayama is also located. The village is surrounded by the mountains and the beautiful river, Maze river, goes through the village. At this village you can experience Japanese country life. Currently the most popular experience is to cook local snack “Gohei-mochi”, At first you may grind the boiled rice. Then you form the rice into your favorite shape. You put the rice cake to the fire. After the rice cake is slightly baked, you put the sauce on the both side and return to fire again. Finally “Gohei-mochi” is ready! Have a nice appetite! The second experience is to catch fishes by hands at the river. This experience attracts not only children but also adult. For details and reservation please contact Maze tourist bureau. http://mazekanko.jp/en/index.html
Nakasendo was one of the main route between Tokyo(Edo) and Kyoto in Edo era.(17-mid 19 century) Along Nakasendo there are lots of post towns where tourists take rest and stay overnight. Along the Kiso river there were 11 post towns among which Tsumago-juku and Magome-juku still attract lots of tourist including overseas visitors. From Tsumago-juku(located at Nagiso town) you can walk to the next post town “Magome-juku) along the ancient Nakasendo. There is approx. 8km length hiking trail between two post towns. It may take about 3hours. After you walk through you can get the certificate at the tourist bureau. You may feel as if you are transported through time to ancient Japan.
Nagiso town, Nagano Pref., one of the most beautiful villages in Japan is located along the Kiso river. Now is the best time to enjoy autumn leaves at Kakizore gorge. Kiso river(229km long) forms the Kiso Valley of Nagano and empties into Ise Bay. Over time it has shaped the valley offering visitors unique landscapes and views. Kakizore Gorge is one of such landscapes. It takes about 10mins from downtown of Nagiso by car to the parking of this gorge. You can enjoy trekking along the beautiful river to reach to the “Ushigataki” waterfall. As you see the photo above, the water here is really pure and beautiful. You surely may be impressed.
Higashi Shirakawa Village, Gifu Pref.,one of the most beautiful villages, is proud of their delicious Japanese green tea, “Shirakawa tea”. Along the river there continues tea plantation on the narrow slope. In the spring when fresh tea leaves come out, lots of photographers come to this village to take breath breaking view. After you take photo of tea plantation, you may drop at “Shirakawa Chaya” to try the most delicious green tea grown at the most beautiful village.
Nakagawa village, one of the most beautiful village, is located just in the middle of Central and South Alps. In the village there is very popular mountain called “Jinbagatayama”. You can either climb from the downtown or go by car. It takes about 6 hours to climb up to the summit of the mountain and come back to downtown. On the top of the mountain there is also camping space available. Please enjoy wonderful view!
Nakagawa Village, one of the most beautiful villages in Japan, is located just between South and Central Alps and in the middle of the village there goes Tenryu river. Along this river there are genre river terraces on which various kinds of fruits are grown well throughout the year. Thanks to the temperature difference between day and night and genre sunshine these fruits become so sweet and juicy. Now is the season of apple and Japanese persimmon. You can of course eat fresh Japanese persimmon. But, as you see above photo, they hung and dry them under the sun for a while, then the persimmons become more sweet and preservative food. You can buy them as souvenir. From the winter till early spring you can enjoy strawberries followed by cherry. End of August pear and grape come up to you. For all the fruits you can enjoy pick up by yourselves and eat at the place. Enjoy fruits paradise at Nakagawa village!
As I mentioned, Kiso town has two faces. One face is nostalgia which I have introduced you before. Today I would like to let you know another face, “Wonderful Nature” of this old town. After you feel as if you have been transported though time at Fukushima post town and downtown, you may move up to Kaida Kogen. Just about 30mins drive brings you this nice nature paradise. To reach to Kaida Kogen the easiest way is to go through route 361. But, I recommend you to go through old route going across “Jijo Pass”. The road is relatively narrow. But, you can meet nice view on the way to Kaida Kogen. Kiso is also famous for breeding good horses. These horses are not suitable for horse race, but they are so kind and modest that people are relaxed with them. You can ride on the horse in the meadow. Another nice experience is walking tour with the horse in the meadow. This is really something different and precious experience which makes you so relaxed and happy. As for details and schedule of this horse tour, please contact Kiso Ontake Health Laboratory. http://ontakelabo.jp/kisoumaaruku.html After relaxing with nature and horse you […]
Kiso town was one of the most famous and prosperous post towns along the “Nakasendo” which was the major route between Tokyo(Edo) and Kyoto. This town has 2 faces for the tourists now. The first face is nostalgia of old days of Japan. As mentioned above, this town was so important post town that many businessmen and tourists came and stayed here. If you walk around the downtown, you can feel the prosperity in those days. The places to be visited are 1) Fukushima post town Once you comes into this post town, you may feel as if you have been transported through time. 2) Barrier station In old days of Japan people did not have freedom to visit different places. So, at each important places there were barriers like here to check all the travelers.(like passport control now) At Edo period they made 53 barriers including most famous one “Hakone” to protect the strangers from coming into Edo(Tokyo). Now everybody can go through this barrier including foreign travelers without any check. 3) Downtown After you successfully go though the barrier, you can enjoy downtown walking and shopping. Not like Harajuku Tokyo, you can see and feel old days of […]
O-Shika village is one of the most beautiful villages in Japan which is located at southern part of Nagano Pref. The village is surrounded by forest and mountains, that’s why the village is quite nice place for hunting deer and other wild animals. For your information the name of this village “O-Shika” means “Big deer”, from which you can imagine how the village is. Today I’m very happy to introduce you very nice restaurant and inn, “Oyori-Tei” owned and operated by Mr.and Mrs.Akiyama, veteran hunter. Inside the house there is a big hearth on which Mr.Akiyama cooks and serves dinner including venisons. This is the main dish, venison caught by Mr.Akiyama today. This inn just accepts only one group of tourists. So, you may feel that you come to stay at your friend’s house. In the morning you can enjoy nice breakfast served by Mrs.Akiyama at the small arbor outside under the fresh air. The owner’s English is not so perfect, but lots of foreign guests have stayed and enjoyed this inn. So, you don’t have to worry anything and stay at special night at O-Shika village. For details and reservation please contact them directly. The following is their web: […]
Kuni Village, Gunma Pref.(now merged into Navanojo town) offer you beautiful nature landscapes. The first one is Recreation Forest “Lake Nozori”. Lake Nozori is a man-made lake which was Japanese first rock-hill dam built in 1956 for hydroelectric power generation. This lake is chosen as one of the best dam lakes in Japan and the footpath around the lake was selected as one of the best 100 walking routes. Now you can see autumn leaves. In early summer you can enjoy azalea followed by orange-yellow day lilies.