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Takayama’s Old Town

  • Sightseeing
  • Takayama
  • History
By Achim Runnebaum
 
 

Exploring Takayama’s historical Old Town area

According to the tourist information website, Takayama, which gained importance
as a source of quality timber and masterful carpenters during the feudal ages,
came under direct control of the daimyo and consequently enjoyed quite a bit of
prosperity despite its remote mountain location. Because it was so well-preserved
and exudes a unique historical charm, it is now a popular destination for tourists
coming from near and far.

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Exploring the town

Dressed in the traditional Yukata, I headed off to explore the historical buildings,
arts crafts, and of course food of the old town. The beautiful mountains in the
distance provided a picturesque backdrop to the historical scenery in front of me,
while I was walking towards said area.

Speaking of scenery, I noticed many people looking at me quite peculiarly. Walking
through the area, I realized that, no, I wasn’t the only non-Japanese here - there
were, in fact, quite a few foreigners, but I was the only one wearing a Yukata.

 
 

It definitely felt special being able to wear such traditional clothing in a historical
town in Japan. Though, if you do decide to don the Yukata, make sure to choose
the right “Getta” (wooden sandals). It didn’t take long for them to wear away the
skin on the side of my foot, which made walking quite painful indeed

 
 

So, either wear socks with them, or opt for the lighter, more comfortable variant.
These “shoes” are definitely not meant for walking long distances. It was around
mid-day at this point, and getting quite hot, so I stopped by an ice-cream and
drinks shop for a quick green tea refreshment.

 
 

The green tea drink was refreshing indeed, and just what I needed at that point.
Ready to face the heat and eager to explore the town more, I thanked the store’s
clerk for her great tips about Takayama and was off again.

The quaint old town has a certain allure that’s hard to put into concrete words.
There’s an air of ancient history mixed with contemporary charm here.

 
 

Many ancient houses have been converted to shops and restaurants. Amidst the
tourist attractions are museums, showcasing artifacts and historical documents
preserved in order to teach people about the vast history in this area. I stopped by
a few places to investigate the history and take photos.

 
 

Old crafts were also on display at this museum

 
 

There are several areas to explore in Takayama, and the old streets, along with the
plethora of shops to explore will certainly draw you in and can be enjoyed by both
old and young alike.

 
 

Food

After that, I had some really good Hamburger / cheeseburger and fries.... kidding,
of course not! When in Rome, as they say, do as the Romans do. Well, Japan is
quite far from Italy, but trying some local specialties should be part of any cultural
trip no matter where you are, so I indulged in Takayama’s renowned steamed buns
with the world-famous Hida Beef inside.

 
 

Delectable doesn’t even begin to describe the culinary delight I was experiencing
after the second bite (had to get through the thick bun first). Seriously, if you find
yourself in this town, don’t skip these!

 
 

Of course, dessert can’t be left out and luckily I found a great ice-cream shop that
specializes in Green Tea soft-serve ice cream to finish off the this interesting day.

 
 

Wrapping up

Takayama, with its old-world history and modern charm is really a great place to
spend a day. Whether you’re after scenery, cultural experiences, history, food, or
just meeting some truly friendly people, you can find something special here.

 
 

So, should you find yourself in Japan, don’t skip this enjoyable experience in the
heart of Japan.

More information

Here is more information about a special ticket called
Takayama Noritsugi Ticket
https://www.nouhibus.co.jp/hida/ticket/

And here’s more information about Takayama

http://www.hida.jp/english/

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↓↓For more information or to purchase, click here! ↓↓
SHORYUDO Bus Pass- Takayama, Shirakawago, Kanazawa-

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Takayama’s Old Town

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