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The Travel Well Guide
City: Takayama State: N/A Country: Japan
The small town of Takayama in central Honshu, to the west of the Hida range which forms part of the Chubu-Sangaku National Park, has preserved much of its old-world charm. Many old houses still demonstrate the skill of the local carpenters, who were renowned in the medieval period for their mastery of their craft. Takayama, often called Hida Takayama to distinguish it from the other towns and cities of the same name, is a beautiful place, with old streets and buildings, and a distinctive atmosphere born of its relative isolation on the banks of the Miyagawa River. The old part of the city is widely regarded as the epitome of what Japan used to be and the historic centre - Sanmachi - manages to retain this impression without becoming either twee or over-commercialized.The best ways to see the area are from the top of the nearby Mount Norikura - a dormant volcano to the east, or the 3.2 km (2-mi) Shin-Hotaka Ropeway.The Hida Cultural Village is an open-air museum, in which traditional houses of the last two centuries have been collected. They are beautiful in their simplicity and perfectly designed to cope with the heavy snowfall that affects this area in winter, sometimes for months on end. The gassho-zukuri farmhouses are named after their roofs, which are shaped like praying hands
Climate | When to Visit
September to November
Visit during: March to May
Directions | How to Reach
Take the JR Tokaido Shinkansen from Tokyo to Nagoya (100-120 minutes, several trains per hour) and transfer to the JR Hida limited express train to Takayama (140 minutes, one train per hour). By highway bus: There are 5-7 direct highway bus round trips per day between Tokyo (Keio Highway Bus Terminal in Shinjuku) and Takayama operated by Keio and Nohi Bus.