Facilities・Townscapes

  •  National Historic Site Kusatsu-juku Honjin

    National Historic Site Kusatsu-juku Honjin

    Shiga History Facilities・Townscapes

    Kusatsu was the point where the Tokaido Road and the Nakasendo Road merged, and in ancient times it was an important transportation point, with many inns. Kusatsu-juku Honjin was where Daimyo lords stayed, and it is a symbol of this history. The largest honjin still standing today has been revived to its original state. Many name plates, and an account book filled with names such as Asanotakuminokami and Kirakozukenosuke. With advance reservations, visitors can try on the clothing of a princess or a lord, and feel as though they have slipped back to the Edo period.

    Location:

    Kusatsu City, Shiga Prefecture

  •  A Potter's Townscape - Shigaraki Lifestyle - Stroll Among the Kilns

    A Potter's Townscape - Shigaraki Lifestyle - Stroll Among the Kilns

    Shiga Facilities・Townscapes Industry・Technology

    Tour the kilns that dot the town, while discovering scenes that are unique to this shigaraki-producing pottery town. Noborigama kilns, chimneys, and pottery works arranged at random... Experience the everyday pottery lifestyle with Shigaraki.

    Location:

    Koka City, Shiga

  •   Ski Hill with a view of Lake Biwa (Biwako Valley, Hakodateyama Ski Area)

    Ski Hill with a view of Lake Biwa (Biwako Valley, Hakodateyama Ski Area)

    Shiga Nature Facilities・Townscapes

    Experience how close together beautiful mountains are to beautiful Lake Biwa while enjoying winter sports. Biwako Valley is one of the largest ski resorts in the Kansai region. It is popular as a local ski spot for Kansai residents because it is so easy to access and to start skiing immediately. Mt. Hakodateyama Ski Resort also has many slopes as a slope paradise. The excitement is off the charts!

    Location:

    Takashima City, Otsu City, Shiga Prefecture

  •  Omihachiman Suigo Meguri (SUKIYAKI)

    Omihachiman Suigo Meguri (SUKIYAKI)

    Shiga History Facilities・Townscapes Food

    The origin of suigo meguri can be traced back four hundred years to when Toyotomi Hidetsugu, a nephew of Toyotomi Hideyoshi went boating, a recreational activity often enjoyed by the imperial court. Look out on clumps of reeds, listen to the oars and the chirping of birds, smell the water and reeds, and feel the rocking of the rowboat...experience nature while eating piping hot sukiyaki on board the boat. Sukiyaki served on the Suigo Meguri is popular at any time of year.

    Location:

    Omihachiman City, Shiga Prefecture

  •  Biwaichi

    Biwaichi

    Shiga Nature History Facilities・Townscapes

    A regular favorite among Japanese cycling fans is the course around Lake Biwa. Recently, visitors from overseas bring their bicycles here and enjoy the beautiful scenery and streetscapes as well as delicious food while biking around the lake. A trip around Lake Biwa is a perfect way to experience a condensed "Japan".

    Location:

    Shiga Prefecture

  •   Kano Shojuan - Sunai no Sato

    Kano Shojuan - Sunai no Sato

    Shiga Nature Facilities・Townscapes Food

    On the banks of the Setagawa river, the only river that emerges from Lake Biwa, find Sunai no Sato, a hilly spot of nearly 21 hectares. Here, plum and citron trees grow, and the farmers pursue the ideal in traditional Japanese sweets-making. The village uses the natural mountain stream, and the forested area is used as a walking trail, and many hundreds of wild flowers bloom here to calm the spirits of those who visit. In addition to walking, visitors can also stay for a meal. There are many souvenirs for sale here that are not available elsewhere.

    Location:

    Otsu City, Shiga Prefecture

  •  MIHO Museum

    MIHO Museum

    Shiga Nature Facilities・Townscapes Industry・Technology

    World-famous architect IM Pei designed this museum built on the theme of the harmony of nature, architecture, and works of art, in the image of Shangri-la. It features a collection of approximately 2000 antique works of art and tea instruments from Egypt to the Middle East and all along the Silk Road to Japan, with 250 items on regular display. Enjoy cherry blossoms, autumn leaves, and other seasonal changes in the vast natural scenery while viewing the many works of art.

    Location:

    Koka City, Shiga Prefecture

  •  Hikone Castle

    Hikone Castle

    Shiga Nature History Facilities・Townscapes

    This castle was built under orders from Shogun Tokugawa Ieyasu over the course of approximately 20 years from 1604. The castle is well-preserved, looking much like its original form, a rarity for Japanese castles. It is also a designated national treasure. The castle keep looks out over Lake Biwa, and it is particularly beautiful during cherry blossom season in spring, and when the autumn leaves turn red. It is also known for its mascot, one of the most popular in Japan, Hiko-nyan. Come to the castle and meet the adorable Hiko-nyan.

    Location:

    Hikone City, Shiga Prefecture

  •  Maizuru Brick Park

    Maizuru Brick Park

    Kyoto History Facilities・Townscapes

    Maizuru, known for its navy district, has many remaining red brick buildings, but the most recommended is the Maizuru Brick Park. Surrounded on three sides by red brick walls, the area is nostalgic and fun. A variety of events including concerts and shows are held inside the buildings, where an air of the early 1900s remains.

    Location:

    Maizuru City, Kyoto Prefecture

  •  Goro Sky Tower

    Goro Sky Tower

    Kyoto Nature Facilities・Townscapes

    The Goro Sky Tower is the place to look out on a 360 degree panorama view of Maizuru, including Maizuru Port and the surrounding rias coastline. Chosen as the number one view in the Kinki Region 100 Famous Views, this spectacular view is worth a look.

    Location:

    Maizuru City, Kyoto Prefecture

  •  Giant Oni-gawara  (Oe, Fukuchiyama City - inside Shutendoji no Sato)

    Giant Oni-gawara  (Oe, Fukuchiyama City - inside Shutendoji no Sato)

    Kyoto Facilities・Townscapes

    A giant oni-gawara, a roof tile decorated with the figure of a demon, marks the entrance of the Japanese Oni Exchange Museum, which displays information about oni, or demons, from around the world. The 5m tall, 10 ton "Oeyama Heisei no Ooni was made in an unprecedented way, constructed in parts by the nation's great oni-gawara artists, fired, and assembled here in Oeyama. The museum itself has the outside appearance of an oni. It really is all about demons. Don't miss it.

    Location:

    Fukuchiyama City, Kyoto Prefecture

  •  Bamboo Path

    Bamboo Path

    Kyoto Nature Facilities・Townscapes

    The Nishinooka Hill bamboo forest is located in the Northwest of the city, which is a known producer of high quality edible bamboo shoots. The "Take no Michi" bamboo path is planted with the moso bamboo that Muko City is famous for, and is maintained in order to preserve the landscape. Take no Michi features a bamboo fences made of bundles of bamboo called "takehogaki", and "kofungaki" fences made in the shape of ancient burial mounds, with a rounded top. The "kaguyagaki" fences are made in the image of the collar of the 12-layered kimono worn by Kaguya-hime of legend, and other original fence styles for a total of seven different kinds of bamboo fence that line the 1.8km bamboo forest road.

    Location:

    Muko City, Kyoto Prefecture

  •  Kyoto Aquarium

    Kyoto Aquarium

    Kyoto Nature Facilities・Townscapes

    Kyoto's first aquarium was completed in March 2012, built in the old capital which is enclosed on three sides by mountains, under the concept of "Life Connected by Water". With Kyoto's unique river culture as a background, and the connection between the headwaters in the mountains and the sea, many living creatures are connected in an ecosystem-style presentation.

    Location:

    Kyoto City, Kyoto Prefecture

  •   Kansai International Airport Framed Night View @ Star Gate Hotel

    Kansai International Airport Framed Night View @ Star Gate Hotel

    Osaka Facilities・Townscapes

    Head to Japan's number one Airport on the sea, and go to the 53rd floor sky chapel of the Star Gate Hotel to get the best view of Osaka Bay, a straight line glowing at night with warm orange lights to soothe the soul. The sky chapel provides a beautiful frame for this magical, picture-perfect view that can't be found elsewhere.

    Location:

    Izumisano City, Osaka Prefecture

  •  Abeno Harukas Building  (1-1-43 Abenosuji, Abeno-ku, Osaka)

    Abeno Harukas Building (1-1-43 Abenosuji, Abeno-ku, Osaka)

    Osaka Facilities・Townscapes

    With 60 floors and a height of 300m, it has surpassed the twenty-year leader Yokohama's 296m Landmark Tower, as the tallest building in Japan. The floors include Osaka Marriott Miyako Hotel, offices, Abeno Harukas Art Museum, a rooftop garden, Kintetsu Department Store, Kintetsu Minami Osaka Line, Osaka Abenobashi Station. The Abeno Harukas Kintetsu Main Store Tower opened first on June 13, 2013, and the following spring, in March 2014, it held its grand opening. It will be a new Osaka landmark.

    Location:

    Osaka City, Osaka Prefecture

  •  Osaka Prefecture  Izumisano Fishing Port

    Osaka Prefecture Izumisano Fishing Port

    Osaka Facilities・Townscapes Industry・Technology

    This fishing port connects the fruits of the sea with the dining tables of the people. Look out to see the Kansai Airport Bridge, connecting Japan with the world. The airport is built with the newest technology to create a manmade island that is gentle on the environment, and the way it protects rich fish habitat is a shining example of this. The fishing port includes Osaka's original open-air market, the Izumisano Fisheries Cooperative Open-Air Fish Market, where visitors can buy seafood fresh from Senshu to eat, and also enjoy watching the fish auctions.

    Location:

    Izumisano City, Osaka Prefecture

  •  Rinku Town, Ferris Wheel and Gate Tower Building

    Rinku Town, Ferris Wheel and Gate Tower Building

    Osaka Facilities・Townscapes

    A landmark of Izumisano is the view of Rinku Town ferris wheel and Gate Tower Building together. In particular, Gate Tower Building is 256m tall, one of the tallest buildings in Japan, and the view of the Kansai area from this tower is a truly superb view.

    Location:

    Izumisano City, Osaka Prefecture

  •  Hirakatajuku Kurawanka Goroku Market (Tsutsumi, Mitsuya, Okamoto, Hirakata City)

    Hirakatajuku Kurawanka Goroku Market (Tsutsumi, Mitsuya, Okamoto, Hirakata City)

    Osaka Facilities・Townscapes Festivals・Events

    The Hirakata-juku area was the 56th stop on the Tokaido Highway, as well as a connecting port for the Yodo River boat transport, making it a spot rich in history and culture. Every month, an open-air market is held in the Hirakata-juku area, where visitors can buy high quality handmade items such as accessories, pottery, and more from approximately 200 shops. Every month approximately 6000 shoppers visit the market. "Kurawanka" is a word that was used when selling food and drink to the boatmen travelling the Yodo River during the Edo period, making it a local phrase full of history.

    Location:

    Hirakata City, Osaka Prefecture

  •  Shin Umeda City Floating Garden Viewing Platform

    Shin Umeda City Floating Garden Viewing Platform

    Osaka Facilities・Townscapes Industry・Technology

    A viewing platform located 170m in the air. See the entire Osaka City area and out to Awaji Island. The underground shopping street features a food court with a retro streetscape called Takimi Koji.

    Location:

    Osaka City, Osaka Prefecture

  •  Tsutenkaku

    Tsutenkaku

    Osaka Facilities・Townscapes

    Tsutenkaku is a symbol of the most Osaka-est of neighborhoods, Shinsekai, and it is well-loved by locals. This year Tsutenkaku celebrated its 100th anniversary. When you visit, don't forget to make a wish and touch the feet of its own lucky god, Billiken.

    Location:

    Osaka City, Osaka Prefecture

  •  Grand Front Osaka

    Grand Front Osaka

    Osaka Facilities・Townscapes

    On the north side of JR Osaka Station, you'll find a new town made of four towers, called Grand Front Osaka. Amongst water and greenery, enjoy shopping at "Shops and Restaurants" featuring 266 stores; learn, play, and discover at the intellectual and creative spot, "Knowledge Capital"; enjoy world-class services at the Intercontinental Hotel Osaka, and more. In the middle of a huge city, take a deep breath of fresh air and enjoy a stroll in this facility.

    Location:

    Osaka City, Osaka Prefecture

  •  Expo ’70 Commemorative Park

    Expo ’70 Commemorative Park

    Osaka Facilities・Townscapes

    The site of the 1970 World Exposition in Japan (Osaka Expo) is now one of Osaka’s best known parks. After the Expo, it was redeveloped as “a cultural park set within nature,” with facilities for culture, sports, recreation and leisure. The Tower of the Sun (symbol of Expo ’70) and the Japanese-style garden have been retained as they were during the Expo. Today, visitors can enjoy flowers and plants all over the park, highlighting each of the four seasons, and diverse events presented throughout the year.

    Location:

    Suita City, Osaka Prefecture

  •  Joruri Theater

    Joruri Theater

    Osaka Facilities・Townscapes

    Joruri is a type of dramatic narrative chanting, accompanied by shamisen, and usually associated with puppet theater. “No-se Joruri” is a regional performing art handed down here since the Edo period. The theater was built in 1993 primarily to support the joruri tradition. No-se Ningyo Joruri Rokkakuza, a theater group made up of local people, presents an annual performance of puppet joruri each June. Performing artists of diverse genres also give performances in the theater. The theater lobby screens video recordings and has a permanent exhibition. Please contact the theater beforehand if you wish to handle the puppets and have photographs taken.

    Location:

    No-se (Town), Osaka Prefecture

  •  Awaichi

    Awaichi

    Hyogo Facilities・Townscapes

    Cycle around Awaji Island. In recent years, cycling has become very popular, and more people than ever are enjoying cycling on Awaji Island. Hyogo Prefecture has created eight different cycling courses that can be found on the Awaji Island Cycling Map, that run from an easy 20km run, to a 150km route that circles the entire island. Among cycling fans, it is becoming a highly-rated course along with the "Biwaichi" course around Lake Biwa.

    Location:

    Sumoto City, Minami Awaji City, Awaji City, Hyogo Prefecture

  •  Banshu Chikusa Tesuki Washi Kobo

    Banshu Chikusa Tesuki Washi Kobo

    Hyogo Facilities・Townscapes Industry・Technology

    Chikusa has been a producer of a kind of washi paper called Harimagami since the Nara period. Currently, there is just one shop in the town that continues to make washi paper today, but the high quality paper can only be made in this place with its well-preserved natural surroundings. The shop continues to maintain tradition, passing down skills through the ages.

    Location:

    Shiso City, Hyogo Prefecture

  •  Kobe Anpanman Museum/Mall

    Kobe Anpanman Museum/Mall

    Hyogo Facilities・Townscapes

    This spring, the first theme park in West Japan to feature the anime hero loved by Japanese children, Anpanman, opened in Kobe. Children can play on the colorful playground equipment, and eat special limited edition bread and snacks shaped like the anime characters at the food court. There are plenty of Anpanman-themed souvenirs available, and it's a spot the whole family can enjoy. The facility is located near Kobe's bay area, and there are also other shopping malls nearby.

    Location:

    Kobe City, Hyogo Prefecture

  •  Infiorata Kobe

    Infiorata Kobe

    Hyogo Facilities・Townscapes Festivals・Events

    This flower-focused event is held in the Chuo ward of Kobe, including Sannomiya Higashi, Motomachi Anamon, Nishi Motomachi, Kitanozaka venues. Infiorata is an Italian word that means "blanket with flowers". Farmers in places like Tonami City, Toyama Prefecture, provide flower petals that have been picked in order to grow bulbs, and the unneeded petals are recycled in order to create beautiful flower pictures.

    Location:

    Kobe City, Hyogo Prefecture

  •  Akashi Kaikyo Bridge and Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall

    Akashi Kaikyo Bridge and Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall

    Hyogo History Facilities・Townscapes Industry・Technology

    The magnificence of the world's longest suspension bridge, the Akashi Kaikyo Ohashi. The length of the space between the pillars on the Akashi Kaikyo Ohashi is the longest in the world. There are many places to view the elegance of the bridge's shape, and at night when it is lit-up, but the best place to truly experience the size of the bridge and the fusion of nature and the massive man-made architectural structure, is the Sun Yat-Sen Memorial Park directly adjacent to the bridge. It also has historical appeal, and is an ideal addition to a new one hundred Kansai views. (There is also a tour where visitors can experience a 360 degree panoramic view from the top of the bridge's pillar at Bridge World from April to November (every week from Thursday to Sunday, and on Holidays))

    Location:

    Kobe City, Hyogo Prefecture

  •  Suma Beach

    Suma Beach

    Hyogo Nature Facilities・Townscapes

    This beautiful beach with white sand and green pines, is a recreation zone loved by many, and as it is the closest swimming beach to the Osaka-Kobe area it is busy with tourists and beach huts every summer. It also holds many events such as the beach volleyball tournament, and it is popular with the younger generation as well as families. Surf music giants The Beach Boys even wrote a song about this beach, called Sumahama.

    Location:

    Kobe City, Hyogo Prefecture

  •  Tetsujin 28-go Statue, Three Kingdoms Garden

    Tetsujin 28-go Statue, Three Kingdoms Garden

    Hyogo Facilities・Townscapes

    This actual-sized monument (18 meters tall) is based on the popular Japanese manga/anime "Tetsujin 28-go" and is a popular photo spot with young people. Nearby find the "Three Kingdoms Garden" an exhibition hall based on the Chinese legend, Three Kingdoms.

    Location:

    Kobe City, Hyogo Prefecture

  •  Nada-Gogo (Five Villages of Nada) in Kobe

    Nada-Gogo (Five Villages of Nada) in Kobe

    Hyogo History Facilities・Townscapes Industry・Technology Food

    The Nada-Gogo in Kobe City is one of the greatest sake brewing districts in Japan. The foundation of sake produced by the Nada-Gogo is Yamada Nishiki rice, a rice variety ideal for brewing sake, and Miyamizu water, a hard water discovered in the early half of the 19th century. Embark on a tasting tour of some of the more than 30 breweries that together produce about a third of all the sake made in Japan.

    Location:

    Kobe City, Hyogo Prefecture

  •  Sasayama Castle Ruins, and Traditional Merchant Houses of Kawaramachi-Tsumairi

    Sasayama Castle Ruins, and Traditional Merchant Houses of Kawaramachi-Tsumairi

    Hyogo History Facilities・Townscapes

    Feel the atmosphere of an earlier era. Visit the ruins of Sasayama Castle, built in 1609 by order of Tokugawa Ieyasu. The Kawaramachi-Tsumairi group of merchant houses presents scenery of a town that prospered as a center of commerce after the castle was built.

    Location:

    Sasayama City, Hyogo Prefecture

  •  Awaji Yumebutai

    Awaji Yumebutai

    Hyogo Nature Facilities・Townscapes

    Designed by the architect Tadao Ando, Awaji Yumebutai is a charming leisure and resort facility containing hothouses, flower beds, gardens and more, all based on the theme “Flowers and Greenery.” Complete with a panorama-view restaurant, outdoor theater, resort hotel and other facilities, Yumebutai lacks nothing in terms of comfort and entertainment.

    Location:

    Awaji City, Hyogo Prefecture

  •  SPring-8

    SPring-8

    Hyogo Facilities・Townscapes Industry・Technology

    SPring-8 is a large-scale synchrotron radiation facility with diameter of about 450 meters and circumference of some 1,500 meters. Delivering the world’s most powerful synchrotron radiation, the facility can be used for research into diverse areas, including nanotechnology and biotechnology. The Exhibition Hall is freely open to the public. Guided tours of the site are also offered.

    Location:

    Sayo (Town), Hyogo Prefecture

  •  Awaji Ningyo Joruri

    Awaji Ningyo Joruri

    Hyogo History Facilities・Townscapes

    Awaji Ningyo Joruri, a narrative puppet theater art accompanied by shamisen music, is a traditional performing art with a history of over 500 years. This performing art is presented every day in its own theater. Each puppet has three people operating it, displaying skills that result from many years of training. Encounter an aspect of culture and history unique to Awaji.

    Location:

    Minamiawaji City, Hyogo Prefecture

  •  Gojo Shinmachi

    Gojo Shinmachi

    Nara Nature History Facilities・Townscapes

    The history of Gojo Shinmachi went back to roughly 400 years ago, shortly after the Edo Bakufu was established following the Battle of Sekigahara. The Shimmachi Street retains historical buildings from the Edo period including the oldest existing private residence. Their architectural styles vary from each period. The area was designated as an Important Preservation District for Groups of Traditional Buildings.

    Location:

    Gojo City

  •  Dorogawa Onsen

    Dorogawa Onsen

    Nara Facilities・Townscapes

    Dorogawa Onsen is a hot spring town with many inns, souvenir shops, and restaurants. It has flourished around Ryusenji Temple, which is regarded as the first ascetic practice place of Shugendo on Mt Omine. The mountain reverberates with the sound of the conch shells blown by Yamabushi (mountain ascetics) during the practice season from May to September. The hot springs, at the inns or the public resort called ‘Dorogawa Onsen Center’, have attracted many visitors as their waters are said to benefit skin complexion.

    Location:

    Tenkawa Village

  •  Hatenashi Settlement

    Hatenashi Settlement

    Nara Nature History Facilities・Townscapes

    Hatenashi Settlement is located along Kohechi Route, which is one of the pilgrimage routes to Kumano. These routes were designated as a UNESCO World Heritage as part of the “Sacred Sites and Pilgrimage Routes in the Kii Mountain Range”. It is also called ‘The Sky Village’ due to its high altitude location and has spectacular views of the Hatenashi Mountain Range. Hatenashi Settlement is chosen one of Japan’s top 100 villages. Visitors enjoy these views not only on clear days but also in mist and clouds on rainy days.

    Location:

    Totsukawa Village

  •  Tomogashima

    Tomogashima

    Wakayama Nature History Facilities・Townscapes

    The Kitan Strait is home to four islands: Jinoshima, Torajima, Kamishima, and Okinoshima. They are collectively known as Tomogashima. Regular boats leave from Kada port, and arrive at Okinoshima in approximately 20 minutes, where a hiking course that tours the fort remains is popular. Additionally, the western edge of island that cross through the meridian line of Japanese Standard Time (135 degrees east longitude) is home to the eighth white western-style lighthouse built in Japan, that helps to protect the comings and goings of ships in the strait even today.

    Location:

    Wakayama City, Wakayama Prefecture

  •  Katsuura Fishing Port

    Katsuura Fishing Port

    Wakayama Facilities・Townscapes Industry・Technology Food

    The Nachi Katsuura Fishing Port boasts the largest volume of non-frozen bluefin tuna in Japan. Visitors can view the bluefin auctions, and can enjoy fresh bluefin as sashimi and in other dishes at the restaurants, hotels, and inns in the town.

    Location:

    Nachikatsuura, Higashimuro District, Wakayama Prefecture

  •  Tama the Station Master

    Tama the Station Master

    Wakayama Facilities・Townscapes Industry・Technology

    Ever since the local train line connecting Wakayama City and Kinokawa City got attention for having a cat for a station master, visitors have come from around Japan and abroad to visit Wakayama Railways' Kishi Station. The station has a cafe and Tama-related items on sale. Catch a ride on the Tama train, and everything will be "Tama World". Recently, "Nitama Station Master" has appeared at Itakiso Station, and its popularity is growing.

    Location:

    Kishigawa, Kinokawa City, Wakayama Prefecture

  •  Mt. Koya

    Mt. Koya

    Wakayama Nature History Facilities・Townscapes

    Surrounded by eight peaks, it is as if Mt. Koya is surrounded by the petals of a lotus. Kobo Daishi (Kukai) opened the mountain as the basic training place for Shingon Buddhist secret teaching. Even today, many monks continue the teachings of Kukai, and continue to do ascetic training here. There are 52 pilgrims lodgings on the mountain, and visitors can experience the history and culture of Mt. Koya through vegetarian Buddhist cuisine or by attending a Buddhist religious service.

    Location:

    Koya, Ito District, Wakayama Prefecture

  •  Mt. Daisen South Face - Kagikake Pass Observation Deck

    Mt. Daisen South Face - Kagikake Pass Observation Deck

    Tottori Nature Facilities・Townscapes

    The highest peak in the Chugoku region, National Park Mt. Daisen is a famous picturesque spot. The towering cliffs and the giant beech forests stretching below are a breathtaking sight. In particular, when the new leaves come out in May, and when the colorful autumn leaves turn in late October and early November, it is particularly beautiful. The spot is loved by travel journalist Kaoru Kanetaka and world-class nature photographer Yoshikazu Shirakawa.

    Location:

    Kofu, Hino District, Tottori Prefecture

  •  Utsubuki Park - White-walled Storehouses and Red Roof Tiles

    Utsubuki Park - White-walled Storehouses and Red Roof Tiles

    Tottori Nature Facilities・Townscapes

    Mt. Utsubuki, the symbol of Kurayoshi City, Tottori Prefecture, features Utsubuki Park its foot, with beautiful blossoming cherry trees in early April. The reflection at night of the cherry blossoms in Hagoromo Pond is wonderful. After cherry blossoms come the azaleas, which are also very beautiful. This gathering point for the city's citizens has been chosen as one of Japan's 100 famous spots for cherry blossoms, one of Japan's 100 best city parks, and one of the 100 best spots for forest therapy. Hasedera Temple, which was built during the Muromachi era, and the Edo era merchant's houses that line the Tama River, and the white-walled and black burned cedar warehouses make it a great spot for a stroll.

    Location:

    Kurayoshi City, Tottori Prefecture

  •  Chinese Garden

    Chinese Garden "Encho-en" (Yurihama, Tottori)

    Tottori Facilities・Townscapes

    At Nashinohana Hot Spring area, along the banks of Togoike Pond, stands Japan's largest authentic Chinese garden. Built to commemorate the friendship between Tottori Prefecture and Hebei Province in China, the building, paintings, rocks and plants are all brought from China and placed again here. Used as a location for shooting films and TV programs, and in recent years it has hosted Chinese costume contests, enjoying popularity as a destination for cosplayers.

    Location:

    Yurihama, Tohaku District, Tottori Prefecture

  •  Red Tiled Roofs and White-Walled Storehouses

    Red Tiled Roofs and White-Walled Storehouses

    Tottori Facilities・Townscapes

    A scene that seems to be trapped in time. White plaster walls, and burned black cedar slats, gently curved little stone bridges, and red Sekishu roof tiles.

    Location:

    Kurayoshi City, Tottori Prefecture

  •  Itaibara Village

    Itaibara Village

    Tottori Nature History Facilities・Townscapes

    Itaibara Village is classified as a Preservation District for Groups of Historic Buildings. As if hidden within a valley of deep green cedar forests, Itaibara is a Japanese mountain village presenting a scene that appears just as it would have in days long past, with groups of old thatched-roof houses, branch schools, shrines, small mill houses working with the flowing river water, charcoal huts, and more.

    Location:

    Chizu (Town),Tottori Prefecture

  •  Shoji Ueda Museum of Photography

    Shoji Ueda Museum of Photography

    Tottori Facilities・Townscapes

    This museum exhibits valuable works by the photographer Shoji Ueda. The harmony of the displayed works and the building housing them is itself a work of art. His distinctive style of arranging his subjects as art objects has been internationally acclaimed as “Ueda-cho.”

    Location:

    Hoki (Town),Tottori Prefecture

  •  Tottori Prefectural Flower Park

    Tottori Prefectural Flower Park

    Tottori Nature Facilities・Townscapes

    Set with a view of the majestic mountain Daisen, this is the largest flower park in western Japan. A covered walkway reaches for one kilometer all the way around the park. Visitors can therefore enjoy flowers in each of the four seasons regardless of the weather.

    Location:

    Nanbu (Town),Tottori Prefecture

  •  Hiwasa Chelonian Museum Caretta (Ohama Beach, Minami, Kaifu District, Tokushima Prefecture)

    Hiwasa Chelonian Museum Caretta (Ohama Beach, Minami, Kaifu District, Tokushima Prefecture)

    Tokushima Facilities・Townscapes

    One of the few sea turtle museums in the world. See living sea turtles in a giant aquarium! Events are sometimes held to release baby sea turtles hatched in the museum into the sea. A valuable place to get close to sea turtles.

    Location:

    Minami, Kaifu District, Tokushima Prefecture

  •  Local Cuisine in an Old Folk House

    Local Cuisine in an Old Folk House

    Tokushima Facilities・Townscapes Food

    Togenkyo Iya's mountain hamlet folk home stay. Even in the remote Iya Valley, this spot is even more remote. Folk homes in Ochiai, a picturesque hamlet in Higashi-iya were renovated and opened as accommodation facilities in 2012. Guests can chose to enjoy simple local family cuisine as an option. The smiles of local motherly hosts will surely help guests forget the hustle and bustle of city life.

    Location:

    Miyoshi City, Tokushima Prefecture

  •  Iya Valley Peeing Boy

    Iya Valley Peeing Boy

    Tokushima Nature Facilities・Townscapes

    In the deep, V-shaped gorge, the emerald green Iya River flows, and looking down from above is sure to make your head spin. In the autumn, the mountain is full of fall leaves from the bottom of the valley to the peaks, and visitors peek out at the sight from cars and buses. On a cliff overlooking the Iya River, a rock left from building the road sticks out, and on top of the rock, a statue of a peeing boy stands, as a physical representation of anecdotes about local children and travelers testing their courage.

    Location:

    Miyoshi City, Tokushima Prefecture

  •  Oku-Iya Double Vine Bridges

    Oku-Iya Double Vine Bridges

    Tokushima Nature Facilities・Townscapes

    Approximately 800 years ago, the Heike clan used Mt. Tsurugi as a place to train their horses, and these vine bridges were used to travel there. Now it is a passage to the Oku-Iya Kazura Vine Bridge Campground. There are two bridges side-by-side, so they are nicknamed the "Man's Bridge and Women's Bridge", or the "Husband and Wife Bridge". Beside the Women's Bridge is a man-powered ropeway that crosses the river, called a "yaen".

    Location:

    Miyoshi City, Tokushima Prefecture

  •  Wakimachi Udatsu Streetscape

    Wakimachi Udatsu Streetscape

    Tokushima History Facilities・Townscapes

    From the Edo period to the Meiji period, "Awa Ai" indigo was traded here, in this streetscape full of merchant houses. On the second floor between buildings, extended walls called "udatsu" were built. At first they were built to prevent fires from spreading, but they quickly became a point of ornamental competition between houses, giving rise to the idiom "udatsu ga agaranai" meaning someone who can't get ahead in the world. In 1988, it was one of 28 places designated as an Important Group of Traditional Buildings.

    Location:

    Mima City, Tokushima Prefecture

  •  Naruto Whirlpools

    Naruto Whirlpools

    Tokushima Nature Facilities・Townscapes Industry・Technology

    The difference in sea level in the Naruto Strait when the tide ebbs and flows creates intense currents, including whirlpools that can reach up to 20 meters in diameter. One of the three big tidal currents in the world, the deafening roar of the whirlpools and the swirling spectacle is magnificent to see. The whirlpools appear for about one and a half hours before and after low and high tide every day.

    Location:

    Naruto City, Tokushima Prefecture

  •  Iya Vine Bridge

    Iya Vine Bridge

    Tokushima Nature Facilities・Townscapes

    Wild hardy kiwi vines (approximately 5 tons) are used to make this vine bridge, which is 45m long, 2m wide, and 14m above the water. In olden times, it was used as an important part of the local road in this deep valley. Nationally Designated Important Folk Cultural Asset.

    Location:

    Miyoshi City, Tokushima Prefecture

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