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Museum / Science Museum Spots in Iwate Area

  • Hiraizumi Cultural Heritage Center
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    4.0
    72 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    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.

    We only discovered the Cultural Heritage Centre on a walk from our hotel while exploring the surrounding area. A visit to here should be the initial step in exploring Hiraizumi's World Heritage...

  • Tono Municipal Museum
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    4.5
    28 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 a neat museum at the foot of a small hill where they used to have a local castle (Nabekura Castle). Of the same modern building, the lower section is the municipal library and the upper...

  • Folktale and Storytelling Center
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    4.0
    45 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Iwate Pref. Tonoshi Chuoudori 2-11
    This is museum where guests can experience Tono’s world of folklore passed down through the generations through audio and visual exhibits. The facility offers something for both adults and children to enjoy, with a theater, video library, and experience corner. In the Tono-za, a theater that was once used as a sake brewer’s storehouse, visitors can appreciate folk tales told by a professional storyteller and other folk entertainment.

    We visited this museum because entry to it came with entry to the Castle museum, so we thought we'd get our money's worth. I do speak some Japanese but my husband doesn't, and we both found this...

  • Denshoen
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    3.5
    6 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Iwate Pref. Tonoshi Tsuchibuchichoutsuchibuchi 6-5-1
    Located in Tono, land of Japanese folklore, Denshoen is a facility which exists to share the lifestyle of farmers in the area once lived to future generations. Visitors can learn about old folk tales, experience traditional events, and try making folk crafts. The facility also engages in silkworm raising. Each year a festival to pray to the household god Oshira-sama is held at Denshoen. In addition, the facility regularly has a storyteller share old Tono folktales (fee and reservation required). You can enjoy local Tono cuisine in Denshoen’s cafeteria, and there’s also a memorial museum dedicated to Tono storyteller Kizen Sasaki, as well as the Oshira-do Hall.

    かっぱ淵の帰りは雨が強くなり急いで伝承園に戻りました。 伝承園のかっぱの麦わら帽子を借りて写真を撮って、 遠野名物のけいらん390円を食べました。 伝承園のけいらん、卵形の小さいお餅にこし餡が入っています。 伝承園の食堂には男の人1人だけ入っていました。 空いていたので貸し切りです。

  • Morioka Takuboku & Kenji Museum
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    3.5
    7 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Iwate Pref. Moriokashi Nakanohashidori 1-1-25
    A museum dedicated to Takuboku Ishikawa and Kenji Miyazawa. These two historic figures spent their youths in Morioka City during the Meiji and Taisho periods, and the museum presents materials relating to Morioka City during those times. The museum building, completed in 1910, was once the Dai Kuju Bank head office and is designated a National Important Cultural Property.

    駅中のインフォメーションセンターのお姉さんに「インスタ映えするカフェをおしえてください」と教えてもらって行きました。今風の感じではなく、大正モダンを彷彿させる重厚な建物の中にひっそりと喫茶コーナーがあり、静かにクラッシックがながれ贅沢なカフェタイムができました。

  • Ichinoseki City Museum
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    3.5
    11 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Iwate Pref. Ichinosekishi Gembichou Okinono 215-1
    This museum is located in Ichinoseki City, Iwate Prefecture. You can learn about the history and culture of the Ichinoseki area and the accomplishments of previous generations. It shows cultural assets and tools from the stone age until the modern era. In addition to permanent exhibitions separated by theme, it also hosts temporary exhibitions, lectures and experiential learning events.

    一関市は藤原氏で栄えた平泉への玄関口にあり、その後は伊達藩の支配下にあった米どころです。そんな歴史の飼料が展示されていました。骨寺村の絵図めあるので現地を訪れる前に見ておくといいでしょう。

  • Morioka Children's Museum of Science
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    3.5
    11 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Iwate Pref. Moriokashi Motomiya Hebiyashiki 13-1
    This science museum that opened in 1983 is located in Morioka City, Iwate Prefecture. Giving children a scientific mindset! is the theme of the planetarium and science shows held every week on Sundays and holidays. In addition, workshops held for topics such as science handicraft lessons are popular, and many families visiting on the weekends.

    子どもも大人も楽しみながら、科学チックな体験型の施設でした。プラネタリウムや日曜は工作等のイベントもあるようです。

  • Stone and Kenji Museum
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Iwate Ichinoseki-shi Higashiyamacho Matsukawa Takinosawa 149-1
    A museum located a three-minute walk from Rikuchu-Matsukawa Station on the Ofunato Line in Ichinoseki City, Iwate Prefecture. The museum was established for future generations to share with and make it possible to come in contact with the ideas and lifestyles of engineer Kenji Miyazawa and Tohoku Rubble Factory owner Tozo Suzuki. The museum has lapis lazuli, amethyst, and ammonite fossils on display and a library of books collected by Suzuki. Visitors can also take a tour of the former Tohoku Rubble Factory, which was erected in 1924 and registered a National Tangible Cultural Property in 1996 (note: at the present time, tours are not possible due to renovations; tours are scheduled to reopen in the spring of 2020.)
  • The Cattle Museum
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Iwate Oshu-shi Maesawa Minamijinba 103-1
    A museum located a seven-minute taxi ride from Maesawa Station on the Tohoku Main Line in Oshu City, Iwate Prefecture. The museum contains a variety of exhibits on cattle such as cattle skeletons and how milk is produced, the relationship between humans and cattle from ancient times to the present, the history of Maesawa beef, and the cattle industry. The museum holds events such as symposiums and picture book readings, as well as classes like butter making and recreating Meiji period ice cream. The museum store sells original merchandise like T-shirts featuring a cow stomach design, and leather cell phone straps.
  • Kitakami City Oni no Yakata
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    3.5
    11 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Iwate Kitakami-shi Wagacho Iwasaki 16-131
    "A museum located a 20-minute drive from JR Kitakami Station. The museum was opened in 1994 to present information on oni, mythical Japanese creatures alternately translated as ""ogres"" and ""demons."" The museum introduces all kinds of oni, from scary ones to cute and cuddly ones. Exhibits include a large number of oni masks, including a giant mask three-meter-tall and weighing 80 kilograms. The museum also introduces masks depicting oni-like creates from around the world with a focus on Thailand, Nepal, and other Asian countries."

    鬼をモチーフにした施設です。 なかなかに興味深い。 貴方の心の中にも・・・ 世界各国の「鬼」の仮面も展示されています。 ハヌマーンまで「鬼」に分類されてました。 (^_^;)

  • Kesen Carpentry and Folklore Museum
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    4.0
    10 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Iwate Rikuzentakata-shi Otomocho Myoga 1-237
    A museum located a 90-minute drive from the Ichinoseki Interchange on the Tohoku Expressway. The museum is modeled after early Meiji period Kesen homes and was built to pass on the techniques of Kesen carpentry to future generations. The museum was built exclusively with local materials like Kesen cedar wood. The main building is made of wood and modeled after a single story thatch roof family home. Looking up from beyond the irori sunken hearth, visitors can spot Kesen carpentry techniques everywhere, such as three stage beams. There's also a 3.11 Light of Hope eternally lit gas lamp on the grounds which was lit from the 1.17 Light of Hope in Kobe.

    The "Kesen" carpentry style is unique to the area and unfortunately there are very few carpenters (if any) left to carry on the techniques. Inside the main building with high ceilings is a...

  • Sekino-ichi Brewery Sake-no-minzoku Culture Museum
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    4.0
    10 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Iwate Ichinoseki-shi Tamuracho 5-42
    A sake folk museum runs by Iwate's 100-year-old Sekinoichi brewery. Originally it was Tohoku’s largest storehouse for the initial stages of the brewing process, then was remodeled into a museum. A variety of sake brewing equipment is on display, including a large barrel for preparation. The sake making process is explained in detail. You can also visit the brewer’s room, dedicated to Matsuo Daimyojin, the god of sake. There is also a literary museum with materials from authors with ties to Ichinoseki.

    酒造りの工程を詳しく展示されています。でもそのことよりも、この酒蔵(仕込み蔵)が大正7年の建築で、西洋式の建築手法を取り入れているのが特徴です。天井がやたらと高く、開口部も広すぎます。日本古来の土蔵とは似ても似つかないのです。大きさでは“東北一”と豪語するのもうなずけます。そにため大水害や、大震災にも耐えてきたそうです。

  • Tono Machinaka Doki Dokikan
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Iwate Tono-shi Shinmachi 5-3
    An earthenware exhibition and community center in an antique renovated Tono storehouse. At the front is ancient earthenware excavated in Tono that's been restored and put on display. The back of the space is a community salon with a sofa where you can take a break while looking at the pottery. There are also rooms for hands-on workshops, community events, and earthenware making programs. A pottery storehouse and a research facility are also on-site, where researchers analyze and organize Tono pottery.
  • Oshu Koromogawa History Fureai Museum
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Iwate Oshu-shi Koromogawa Hina 60-18
    A museum that conveys the history of the Abe clan, progenitor of the Northern Fujiwara clan. It has an impressive display of wax figures of Abe no Sadato and Minamoto no Yoshiie depicting a scene in which they compose poems during the Former Nine Years’ War. The exhibition begins with a display of artifacts excavated from a Jomon period site. It also showcases the history and traditions of the region including Masuzawa-nuri lacquerware, first developed during the Northern Fujiwara period and further advanced during the Meiji to Taisho periods. Every Tuesday the Koromogawa Lacquer Association gets together to make Masuzawa-nuri lacquerware at the museum's studio. It’s open to public viewing with a reservation.
  • Esashi Local Culture Hall
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    4.5
    2 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Iwate Oshu-shi
    An experience-based museum showcasing the history, culture, and local industries of the Esashi region. It is located about 15 minutes by car from the Mizusawa Interchange on the Tohoku Expressway, adjacent to the Esashi-Fujiwara Heritage Park. It consists of an agricultural center and the Okunoin exhibition area. It's display of the Nakazen Obara family's 101 statues of the Bodhisattva Kannon are notable and exemplify the beliefs of the region. They also have hands-on programs with culinary and craft themes that let you try making soba noodles, pottery, magatama amulets, and more. During the summer and winter holidays they organize other special hands-on programs too.

    這間展覽館就位在藤原之鄉出口的旁邊而已,展示了江刺當地的文化、農業等等珍貴資料,而我們最喜歡最裡面那一間有展示國寶級佛像的展覽室,看了非常非常久,而服務人員知道因為裡面禁止拍照但我們又很喜歡這些佛像,因此特別拿了一份英文版的附有照片的簡介給我們帶回家作記念,真的是太貼心了,因此極力推薦來這邊一遊!

  • Oshu City Traditional Industries Museum
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Iwate Oshu-shi Mizusawa Hadacho Ekimae 1-109
    This museum tells the history of Mizusawa, the birthplace of Nanbu ironware. It's located a five-minute walk from JR Mizusawa Esashi Station. There are displays on the process of making ironware and some of the actual equipment that was used. There's also a recreation of an ironware workshop to help you learn more about the tradition and casting process. Major league baseball player Otani Shohei hails from Mizusawa Ward, and there's a Nanbu ironware casting of his hand you can try shaking. Nanbu ironware products and crafts such as wind chimes and iron kettles are available for purchase in their gift shop.
  • Oshu City Archaeological Research Center
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    5.0
    1 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Iwate Oshu-shi
    A historical museum that showcases the culture of Ezo (pre-modern Northern Japan) and exhibits buried cultural properties excavated from Oshu City. It's on Prefectural Road 270, a five-minute drive from Mizusawa Interchange on the Tohoku Expressway. Isawa Castle Ruins Historical Park is right in front. Displays focus on the way of life of the Ezo culture during ancient times. It has anime screenings about Ezo leaders known as Aterui that even children can understand. There are also hands-on classes making clay figurines, Jomon period accessories, and more. It's an accessible way to learn about the world of archaeology and ancient history.

    明るい室内でわかりやすい説明書きが良かった。車椅子も置いてあり、移動するにも充分な広さがあった。埋蔵に関するクイズもあり、楽しみながら学べることができるのも良い!受付の方も親切で丁寧な対応で感じがいい。

  • Oshu Space and Astronomy Museum
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Iwate Oshu-shi Mizusawa Hoshigaokacho 2-12
    This museum is located approximately a 10-minute drive from the Tohoku Shinkansen Mizusawa-Esashi Station. It has a long history spanning over 100 years, and was reconstructed and recreated in the image of Japan's first international latitude observatory, in 1921. Visitors can see equipment that is currently in use, as well as historical astronomical instruments. The permanent exhibition room on the first floor teaches visitors about the universe, from the things that we can experience from the ground to space and the universe. There is also a theater room with 4D digital space theater screenings, as well as a permanent Universe Exhibition Room, where visitors can experience the universe by touch. Visitors can also listen to various event lectures while relaxing at the cafe.
  • Ryusenshindo Science Museum
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Iwate Shimohei-gun Iwaizumicho Iwaizumi Kannari
    A limestone cave discovered after the Ryusendo Cave–one of Japan's three major caves–in Iwaizumi-cho. In 1967, Ryusendo Cave was discovered during construction to widen a prefectural road. The well-developed cave system and its water course markings have scientific value, and in 1975 it was opened to the public as a science museum. In addition to the stalactites and stalagmites that are still being surveyed, there are abundant traces of pre-modern people. The cave has displays depicting life in the cave, which acted as shelter from the elements. There is also an area of water that looks beautiful when lit up.
  • Nanbu Sake Master Brewer Museum
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    3.5
    4 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Iwate Hanamaki-shi Ishidoriyacho Nakaterabayashi 7-17-2
    This museum is located approximately a 15-minute drive from Hanamaki Interchange on the Tohoku Expressway. It is a historic and culturally valuable building that was originally used as a sake brewery and was later dismantled, relocated and rebuilt. The museum introduces visitors to the history of Nanbu Toji and sake brewing technology in a way that is easy to understand. The museum also displays sake brewing equipment, such as a brewing barrel that is approximately two meters in diameter, as well as miniature events relating to sake brewery. Sakashokan, which is adjacent to the museum, offers sake samples and sake to purchase.

    日本三大杜氏のひとつ、全国の酒蔵で活躍する南部杜氏のふるさとの地にある伝承館です。道の駅やレストランと同じ敷地にありますので、休憩がてら寄ってみることをお勧めします。

Iwate Main 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.

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