Travel / Tourism Spots in Iwate Area

  • Motsuji Temple
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    4.0
    444 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Iwate Pref. Nishiwaigunhiraizumichou Hiraizumi Osawa 58
    This temple that belongs to the Tendai sect was constructed in 850. It is said to have been founded by the priest Jikaku Daishi. Sights to see include the Jodo (Pure Land) garden that is arranged to unify the Buddhist temple and garden pond. As a valuable garden that even now conveys the thoughts and techniques of the Sakutei-ki, the oldest book concerning gardens in Japan, this is a symbol of Motsu-ji Temple. The temple premises have been designated as a Special Historic Site, and the Ennen-no-mai (a dance performed here for peace and longevity) has been designated as an Important Intangible Folk Culture Property.

    The entrance fee is a bit too expensive (700 yen + 300 yen for parking) for what there is to do in the temples precinct. The Pure Land Lake is pretty, and the temple main hall is beautiful in...

  • Ryusendo Cave
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    4.5
    228 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Iwate Pref. Shimoheiguniwaizumichou Iwaizumi Kannari 1-1
    This massive limestone cave is one of Japan’s three largest, and is designated a National Natural Monument. The cave is over 5,000 meters long overall, and hosts eight underground lakes that are among the clearest in the world. The color of the water, called Dragon Blue, is astonishing and the mystical sight is worth visiting. A 700 meter walking route in the cave and three of the eight lakes are open to the public. One section of the trail is barrier-free, with full wheelchair access. The limestone filtered water has been named one of Japan’s top 100 waters, and is available to drink at the cave entrance.

    This spot is far from any station, so you need a car or bus to reach it. The entrance fee costs 1000 yen per person. Business hours are from 8:30 to 17:00, and open everyday. It is one of the three...

  • Miyazawa Kenji Memorial Museum
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    4.0
    185 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Iwate Pref. Hanamakishi Yasawa 1-1-36
    The Miyazawa Kenji Memorial Museum is located in the city of Hanamaki in Iwate Prefecture. It contains video images, as well as materials related to the poet and author of children's stories, Miyazawa Kenji, organized into exhibits in five fields. There are presentations about the creative process that led to Miyazawa's works, commentaries, and the results of research about him. Special events are held inside the museum, including limited-time exhibits of the manuscripts of his children's stories.

    I recommend to book Donguri to Yamaneko bus service to take you many spots in the area in classic style little bus costing about USD52 for whole day tour(half day also available) In the morning...

  • Chuson-ji Temple
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    3.5
    3 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Iwate Pref. Nishiwaigunhiraizumichou Hiraizumi Koromonoseki 202
    This temple was reportedly founded in 850 by Jikaku Daishi, a monk associated with Enryaku-ji Temple in Hieizan (Mt. Hiei). Fujiwara Kiyohira is said to have laid the substantial foundation of the temple. Sights on the premises include the Konjikido, which has been designated as a National Treasure, and the Sankozo, which houses a collection of more than 3,000 cultural properties left by the Oshu Fujiwara lords. In 2011 the cultural heritage of Hiraizumi including Chuson-ji Temple was registered as a World Heritage Site.

    広い中尊寺境内で、水に因むご本尊を現すように唯一池に囲まれたお堂です。 18世紀初めに建立されたもので、時の伊達藩主正室仙姫により寄進された弁財天十五童子が安置されています。 木造平屋、寄棟茅葺、高床式で向拝付きの造りになっており、陸地と島をつなぐ石造りの太鼓橋や、池に映り込む紅葉とお堂のコラボがとても風流でした。

  • Takkoku no Iwaya Bishamondo Hall (Takkoku Seikoji Temple)
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    4.5
    150 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Iwate Pref. Nishiwaigunhiraizumichou Hiraizumi Kitazawa 16
    This temple of the Tendai sect of Buddhism is located in the Hiraizumi-cho area of Nishiwai County, Iwate Prefecture. This cascade temple worships Bishamonten, which is in the Bishamondo Hall, and is a nationally designated Historic Site. In addition, it is also famous for having a torii gate, which is rare in temples. Many tourists visit to enjoy the different scenery of every season.

    This temple does not take that long to visit with its main feature being the Buddha carved into the cliff face. Nevertheless it played an important role in the history of this area and has impressive...

  • Bank of Iwate Red Brick Building
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    4.0
    149 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Iwate Pref. Moriokashi Nakanohashidori 1-2-20
    The Bank of Iwate building is located in the Nakanohashidori area of Morioka City, Iwate Prefecture. Opened to the public after its renovation in 2016, it exhibits documents related to the Bank of Iwate. In addition, it has multipurpose halls that can be used for a variety of events. The building has been selected as a nationally-designated Important Cultural Property, and is visited by many tourists.

    In my opinion, this is a must-visit building in Morioka. It is iconic for Morioka. Without visiting this building, you will regret. We walked a long way from Iwate Park to visit this building...

  • Koiwai Farm
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    4.0
    48 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Iwate Pref. Iwategunshizukuishichou Maruyachi 36-1
    A spacious, 3,000 hectare farm, one of the largest in Japan, located in the southern foot of Mt. Iwate. In addition to a horse riding facility and sheep field, the farm’s tourist area is dotted with attractions children and adults can enjoy. Many of the farm’s structures are historically important, and 21 of the farm’s buildings, including the office and storehouse, built between the Meiji and early Showa periods, were designated Important Cultural Properties in 2017. Visitors who take part in the guided Cultural Property Tour can view some of these Cultural Properties.

    一本桜で有名な小岩井農場のまきば園にあり、家族連れで観光するには良いところです。 まきば園に入園するには有料ですが入り口にあるショップに立ち寄る人は多くいます。 またこの時期岩手山をバックに桜を撮影する良いスポットです。

  • Morioka Hachimangu Shrine
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    4.0
    91 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Iwate Pref. Moriokashi Hachimanchou 13-1
    Morioka Hachimangu Shrine was built in 1680 by the 29th feudal lord Shigenobu Nambu. The god enshrined here has been revered by the locals since ancient times as the god for the roots of human life which include farming, industry, commerce, learning and the other basics of life. Many people know about the various festivals held throughout the year including the Dashi-gyoji (float) Festival and Yabusame Jinji (a horseback archery ritual).

    We had the privilege of having a tea ceremony and dressing up in yukatas while visiting the shrine. It is a very spiritual and beautiful place and the ceremony and wearing of the costume was fabulous...

  • Roadside Station Tono Kazu no Oka
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    4.0
    66 Reviews
    Transportation
    Iwate Pref. Tonoshi Ayaorichounisato 8-2-1
    This roadside station is located in Tono City, Iwate Prefecture. The spiral magnus wind turbine, with blades shaped like screws, is the symbol of the facility. In addition, it sells locally harvested agricultural products, folk crafts and handicrafts, and features a rich variety of items. You can also enjoy Kuretsubo soba (buckwheat noodles), gyoja garlic ramen and a set meal with jingisukan (grilled mutton).

    This “Michi-no-Eki” or Roadside Station is located at the west side of the city of Tohno on National Highway 283. Symbolically it has a uniquely shaped windmill within the complex. Like many other...

  • Morioka Handi-Works Square
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    4.0
    95 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Iwate Pref. Moriokashi Tsunagi Oirino 64-102
    This facility is home to first-rate artisan groups who craft authentic handiworks every day. It consists of the industry revival center, the handi-works square, and the “magariya” zone. The handi-works square offers visitors a chance to craft various Morioka specialty products and hosts events as well, giving people a chance to observe artisans up close and try their hand at making their own items. The local cultural site “Nanbu Magariya” is a must-see as well. It’s about 20 minutes by car from the Morioka Interchange on the Tohoku Expressway.

    We visited here on our way back from a local Onsen and it was very interesting. You can see how local cast iron teapots are made, make your own Japanese cookie and purchase handicrafts.

  • Jodogahama Visitor Center
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    4.0
    68 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Iwate Pref. Miyakoshi Hitachihamachou 32-69
    This information facility is located inside Rikuchu Kaigan National Park in the Hitachihama-cho area of Miyako City, Iwate Prefecture. It gives you information about various natural areas in the national park such as the Jodogahama rock formations and Sanno Rock. There are exhibits related to the Sanriku coast and also a rest space, making it a place used by many local residents. In addition, it also holds events to maintain the Michinoku Coastal Trail footpath.

    Well designed visitor center next to a stunningly beautiful coastline. Furniture fans will enjoy the upholstered chairs made to look like smooth rocks. Simple, clear exhibits that get the point...

  • Hiraizumi Cultural Heritage Center
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    4.0
    86 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Iwate Pref. Nishiwaigunhiraizumichou Hiraizumi Hanadate 44
    This free facility introduces the history and culture of Hiraizumi in an understandable way through wall panels and videos. Items such as documents related to Hiraizumi’s World Heritage sites and articles recovered from the ground during excavation projects are displayed. Paying a visit before sightseeing will deepen your understanding of Hiraizumi’s history and culture and make for a more enjoyable visit. Audio guides that support four languages are also available for use by foreign visitors.

    If you have time, start here to understand the 100 years when Hiraizumi was the most important center of Japan. Chusonji is the head temple of Tendai Buddhism in northeast Japan and it was founded...

  • Iwate Museum of Art
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    4.0
    66 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Iwate Pref. Moriokashi Motomiya Matsuhaba 12-3
    This art museum that opened in 2001 is located in Morioka City, Iwate Prefecture. Paintings and sculptures by artists related to Iwate Prefecture, such as Tetsugoro Yorozu, Shunsuke Matsumoto and Yasutake Funakoshi are on display. In addition, in the permanent exhibition, commentaries by volunteers, collection talk events and other events are regularly held, drawing many tourists to the museum.

    This is a beautiful museum. I was impressed when I stepped into the lobby. When I went there was barely anyone there so I had the museum to myself. There are many exhibits of local artists...

  • Kyukamura Iwate Amihari Onsen
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    4.0
    57 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Iwate Pref. Iwategunshizukuishichou Nagayama Komatsukura 14-3
    This lodging facility is located in Shizukuishi-cho, Iwate County. In Towada Hachimantai National Park at the foot of Mt. Iwate, you can enjoy the Amihari Onsen no Yu, a famous hot spring with a 1,300-year history. It can also be used for day-trip bathing. In addition, the facilities meet the various needs of guests including conference rooms, souvenir shops selling specialty products and a large hall. It also operates skiing and camp areas.

    Kyukamura Iwate-Amiharionsen is a Japanese style resort which I stayed at as part of a ski tour. Japanese style bedrooms were available with futons but I chose a western style bedroom. The room was...

  • Morioka History and Culture Museum
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    4.0
    48 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Iwate Pref. Moriokashi Uchimaru 1-50
    This museum that opened in 2011 is located inside Morioka Castle Park in Morioka City, Iwate Prefecture. You can see exhibited documents related to the history and culture of Morioka. In addition, it regularly holds various events such as workshops, seasonal events and Morioka Sansa Odori performances. It is not only visited by local residents but also many tourists.

    This museum took us no more than 30 minutes to go through. I went mainly for the armour and clothing, which were beatiful. The lack of English means that its hard for english speakers to fully...

  • Roadside Station Hraizumi
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    3.5
    28 Reviews
    Transportation
    Iwate Nishiiwai-gun Hiraizumicho Hiraizumi Kyara Raku 112-2
    "This roadside station, located on National Route 4 in Hiraizumi Town, opened in April 2017. It is nicknamed the ""Kugane Hanasaku Risokyo"" (Ideal Land of Golden Blooming Flowers). The station's exterior, mixing black with gold highlights, blends in nicely with the scenery of Hiraizumi. The spacious interior is accented with warm woods and is divided into an information center, local specialty products area, and a restaurant. The local specialty products market carries fresh farm products, popular doburoku unrefined sakes, and other products from Hiraizumi Town. In the restaurant, you can enjoy dishes made with fresh vegetables and other local ingredients."

    2020年9月に車中泊で利用しました。 駐車場も広く普通車と大型車が区分けされています。 駐車場は全くの平坦ではなく若干傾斜(水勾配程度)がありますが、気になる程ではありません。 駅入り口前のテント売店は夕方着早朝出発だったので閉店していましたが、駅中は広くトイレも広くとても清潔です。道の駅のホール(トイレに行くときのエントランス?通路?)も広く道路情報などもモニターでチエックできます。また、ホー...

  • Kuji Amber Museum
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    4.0
    39 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Iwate Pref. Kujishi Kokujichou Dai19chiwari 156-133
    This museum is located in Kuji City, Iwate Prefecture. Among the amber used in jewelry, this is where you can see amber from Kuji, which has the world's oldest deposits. There are exhibits that show the production of amber and artworks using it. With prior reservations, you can also participate in events where you can experience digging amber.

    様々な種類の琥珀や琥珀のモザイク画等が展示されていました。 琥珀を触れたり、歩いたり出来るコーナーがありましたが、コロナ禍で触れず残念でした。 一番の目的は琥珀の採掘体験で、春から秋にかけて体験出来ます。 スタッフの方が色々気に掛けてくれて、アドバイスをくれたり親切でした。 1時間があっという間に過ぎ、夢中になり楽しめました。 体験後に小さい琥珀の御守を貰えます。

  • Takuboku Newlyweds' House
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    3.5
    65 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Iwate Pref. Moriokashi Chuoudori 3-17-18
    Takuboku Newlyweds' House is a historic building in the city of Morioka in Iwate Prefecture. The poet Ishikawa Takuboku lived here for three weeks with his wife Setsuko, his parents, and his younger sister. In 1984, it was named a Morioka City Designated Tangible Cultural Property. It is the building where Takuboku wrote his essay, My Four-and-a-Half Mat Room, and it is the only extant relic of his life in the city of Morioka.

    You can freely enter this residence. When I went there were only a couple other people there. So I had the house to myself for the most part. It was a peaceful place. The condition was just ok...

  • Tono Municipal Museum
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    4.5
    35 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Iwate Pref. Tonoshi Higashidatechou 3-9
    Established in 1980, this museum is the first of its kind in Japan. It is a museum introducing the folklore and folk culture of the Tono peoples' lifestyle, environment, history, and culture. The life of the Tono people in the Tono basin valley is displayed in an easy to understand manner through documents and photographs. One can enjoy viewing the Tono Story, the picture works based on local folklore and topics, and the animated film ''Shigeru Mizuki's Tono Story.''

    This is of surprisingly high standard for a municipal museum. The 500 yen admission fee includes the loan of an audio visual device which provides a commentary in English. The displays are well...

  • Roadside Station Sanriku
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    4.0
    25 Reviews
    Transportation
    Iwate Pref. Ofunatoshi Sanrikuchouokirai Idobora 95-27
    This roadside station is located along National Route 45 in the Sanriku-cho area of Ofunato City, Iwate Prefecture. Various seasonal seafood such as abalone from Sanriku-cho is sold here. In addition to the fresh fish corner, Persimmon ice cream using the Sanriku specialty, Koeda persimmon, is also popular. With facilities such as a resting area, it is widely used as a place to socialize by both local residents and tourists.

    This is a local food and souvenir shop on Sanriku road. I visited here every time when I come to Ofunato. I tasted the softcream everytime, althought the temperature was under 1 degree.

Iwate Areas

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A northern Tohoku prefecture promising peace and quiet, Iwate is sparsely populated, replacing people with snow-capped mountains, history-rich sites, and fields of crops that are to thank for the region's delicious local cuisine. Meander along the three-city Golden Route, where you'll visit the grand Buddhist temples of Hiraizumi and the Tono folk villages before tasting the three famed noodle dishes of Morioka.

Iwate Photo Album

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