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Spots in Nagano Area

  • Zenkoji Temple
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    4.5
    1693 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Nagano Pref. Naganoshi Naganomotoyoshichou 491-b
    "Located in Nagano City, this temple does not belong to any sect. Any sect is free to worship here, which has received veneration for having Japan's oldest Ikko Sanson Amida Nyorai as the main deity. During the Edo period, it was said that ""once in your life, visit Zenkoji Temple,"" The ""oasaji"" is performed every day during the sunrise. If you purchase a ticket for the inner sanctum, you can worship up close. The ""zenritsu honzon"" is performed once every seven years. About 15 minutes by bus from JR Nagano Station."

    Zenko-ji Temple should be a "must see" spot in Nagoya. Quite an amazing temple with a lovely pathway in front. Highly recommended.

  • National Treasure Matsumoto Castle
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    4.5
    3121 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Nagano Pref. Matsumotoshi Marunouchi 4-1
    "Matsumoto Castle is said to feature Japan's oldest surviving five-storied six-floor pagoda. It is one of the few castles designated as a National Treasure, and maintains the image of the past. The black and white contrast of the castle rising amid the Alps in the background is beautiful, and the castle has become a symbol of Matsumoto City. In addition to the castle facilities of the Sengoku period, such as the stone drops meant to rebuff invaders, or samurai windows or the gun slits, there are exhibits such as the ""Matsumoto Castle Gunhouse"" centered around matchlock guns, and artifacts unearthed during the ninomaru palace excavation performed from 1979-1984. In the precinct, you'd do well to see the black gate with eave roof tiles marked with the family crests of historical castle lords, or the taiko gate which was restored in 1999."

    one of the oldest castles in Japan. you can see the reflection of the castle in the clear water. The red bridge gives it more color.

  • Suwa Taisha (Suwa Grand Shrine) Kamisha Honmiya
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    4.5
    385 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Nagano Pref. Suwashi Nakasu 1
    Suwa Taisha (Suwa Grand Shrine) Kamisha Honmiya, one of the oldest shrines in the country and the head shrine of over 10,000 Suwa shrines throughout Japan, has no main building, but only a “heihaiden” and a “katahaiden,” a unique style known as the Suwa style. Many precious buildings remain, and six of them are registered as Important Cultural Properties. In olden times, people worshiped at Suwa Myojin to pray to the guardian deities of wind, water, and the harvest, as well as brave men. Nowadays, it is believed to house the deity that guards life and livelihood. It’s about five minutes from the Suwa Interchange on the Chuo Expressway.

    Parts of the Suwa Taisha shrine complex date back to the 7th century and possibly earlier. The shrines honour the gods of agriculture, hunting, and fertility. There are many differing legends, myths...

  • Karuizawa Prince Shopping Plaza
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    3.5
    8 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Nagano Pref. Kitasakugunkaruizawamachi Karuizawa
    A gigantic shopping mall and virtual landmark in Karuizawa. With a total of seven parking areas, shoppers visiting by car are encouraged to look up which stores they are most interested in before choosing where to park. In addition to fashion brands, the mall also contains a shop selling Karuizawa sweets and jams, making it the perfect place to pick up a few souvenirs as well. Children can play to their hearts’ content in the spacious outdoor kids park.

    折角小籠包を食べに行ったのですが、開店時間から品切れと書かれており大変残念な思いをしました。他の大きな餃子などの味は良かったのですが、メインの小籠包が回転した時点で品切れは納得の行かない記載でした。

  • Lake Suwa
    Travel / Tourism
    Suwa City, Nagano Prefecture
    Lake Suwa, the largest lake in Shinshu, has a circumference of about 16 kilometers. Here you can enjoy lengthy walks and jogging as well as pleasure cruises and boat trips on the lake. From autumn through to winter keen anglers can fish for wakasagi (a variety of smelt). The Lake Suwa Fireworks Festival, one of Japan’s largest firework displays, is held at the lake in summer with an incredible 40,000 fireworks lighting up the night sky. The huge fireworks display unsurprisingly attracts huge numbers of people each year.
  • Nozawa Onsen Snow Resort
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Nagano Pref. Shimotakaigunnozawaonsenmura Toyosato 7653
    One of Japan’s foremost ski and snowboarding resorts offering elevation differences reaching 1085 meters. The resort is popular for its wide array of courses enjoyable from beginners to experts. The resort also has a wide and gentle slope for children as well as a kids’ park for young ones to play in the snow making it a great destination for families as well. Another attractive point is the resort’s moving walkway which extends from the hot spring district directly to the slopes.
  • Ueda Castle Park
    Travel / Tourism
    Nagano Pref. Uedashi Ninomaru 6263 - a
    Ueda Castle was built by Sanada Yukimura’s father, Sanada Masayuki. By repelling the Tokugawa Army twice before, the castle became known as the impregnable castle. Today it is maintained as the Ueda Castle Park and it is famous as a cherry blossom viewing spot during the spring every year at the Ueda Castle Thousand Cherry Blossom Festival.
  • Togakushi-jinja Shrine
    Travel / Tourism
    Nagano Pref. Naganoshi Togakushi
    Togakushi-jinja Shrine is located at the foot of Mt. Togakushi, Nagano City and consists of five shrines each named Okusha, Chusha, Hokosha, Kuzuryusha and Hinomikosha. It is said that the temple’s origins lie in the Iwato legend of mythology, and has been worshiped by many people as a sacred place since ancient times. The avenue of 400-year-old cedar tree which cover the approach road to Okusha have a powerful lure and this area was also used as a shooting location by commercials. There are also points on the road between the shrines with steep drops, so it is recommended to wear clothes which are easy to walk in if you plan to walk around by foot.
  • Suwa Grand Shrine Shimosha Akimiya
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    4.0
    91 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Nagano Pref. Suwagunshimosuwamachi 5828
    A Shinto shrine located in Shimosuwa Town, Suwa County, Nagano Prefecture. The Akimiya is one of six shrines which comprise Suwa Grand Shrine, the head shrine of some 25 thousand Suwa shrines located across the country. Worshipped for providing abundant harvests and granting bravery since ancient times, in recent times the shrine has also come to be worshipped for protecting life and livelihood. The Kagura-den hall, with an eye-catching giant rope hanging in front, and the two-storied Heihai-den (worship and offering hall) are designated Important Cultural Properties. Other shrine highlights include the Neiri no Sugi, an 800-year old Japanese cedar tree. The shrine is famous for the Ombashira Festival held every seven years, as well as the Boat Festival (Ofune Matsuri) held on August 1.

    諏訪大社には上社(2箇所)と下社(2箇所)が諏訪湖の周りに存在します。上社は茅野市と諏訪市、下社は下諏訪町にあり、主宰神は上社の本宮が建御名方神、上社の前宮が八坂刀売神を、下社は建御名方神と八坂刀売神の両方です。 上社と下社とありますが社格は同じであり、伊勢神宮のような外宮→内宮と言うような参拝する順番の決まりごとはなく、外宮または内宮だけをお参りする「片参り」のような縁起が良くないこともないの...

  • Shiraito Falls
    Travel / Tourism
    Karuizawa-cho, Kitasaku-gun, Nagano Prefecture
    The result of underground water welling out of bare rock, Shiraito Falls has a thin stream of water almost like a strand of silk with beautiful lines of water and white spray falling down. The refreshing sight is one of Karuizawa’s representative sightseeing spots. In the winter, icicles are artificially created using water gushing forth from the waterfall, producing a fantastical atmosphere.
  • Karuizawa Kogen Church
    Travel / Tourism
    Nagano Prefecture Kitasaku-gun Karuizawa Town Hoshino
    This church full of history and located in Karuizawa Town, Kitasaku County Nagano Prefecture began in 1921 as a small wooden building, and was the origin of the Free Education of Art Salon  movement that attracted cultured people such as Hakushu Kitahara and Toson Shimazaki. The building, which is enveloped in the nature of Karuizawa, is characteristic for its pointy triangular roof. As a church that is open to all people, it holds gospel worship every Sunday and events in accordance with the season. It is also popular as a place for resort weddings.
  • Tsugaike Kogen Ski Resort
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Otari village Kitaazumi-gun Nagano prefecture Tsugaike plateau
    Tsugaike Kogen Ski Resort is popular among beginners and families for its safe terrain. The Kane-no-naru-oka course slopes gently down the hill and has a generous width of over 1200 meters. Skiers can also enjoy the fantastic atmosphere when the slopes are lit up during night skiing. The uma-no-se (horseback) course for advanced skiers is set on a narrow ridge with large humps continuing down the steep slope. On fine days Mt. Fuji can be seen from the highest point at an elevation of 1700 meters. For the adventurous why not try out the special Heli-ski and Snowboard activity.
  • Shiga Highlands
    Travel / Tourism
    Shiga Kogen in Shimokitai-gun Nagano-machi, Nagano Prefecture
    Located at an altitude of over 1,000 meters, the Shiga Highlands occupy the bulk of the central area of Joshin’etsu-kogen National Park. This resort area features lakes, marshes, and bogs of all sizes, and you can enjoy physical activities such as trekking in summer and skiing in winter. The rich natural scenery is intimately intertwined with people’s lives, and in fact, this area has been designated a Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO.
  • Alps Azumino National Government Park
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    4.0
    99 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Nagano Pref. Aduminoshi Horiganekarasugawa 33-4
    This national park in Azumino stretches over the foothills of the Northern Alps. It is divided into two areas with the theme being the realization of fruitful free time activities in nature and culture. There are five areas in the Omachi and Matsukawa districts, preserving the excellent natural environment for the Alps mountain landscape. In the Horigane and Hotaka districts there are two areas, where the preservation and restoration of rural scenery in Azumino is carried out. All areas of the national park are designed with a diverse array of recreational activities in mind.

    This is an enchanting place to visit over the Christmas period. There is a wonderful outdoor light show that you can walk around, and taiko performance on New Year's Eve by local Kyogaku team who...

  • Kyukaru Ginza (Kyu-Karuizawa Ginza Street)
    Travel / Tourism
    Nagano Pref. Kitasakugunkaruizawamachi Karuizawa
    This is the main shopping district of Karuizawa located along the old Kyu Nakasendo. It has over 400 years of history, and the area boasts a row of long-established shops such as a bakery, boutiques of imported fashion, and various new and established shops. The area is bustling with many tourists in the summer months.
  • Jigokudani Yaen-koen
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    4.5
    2303 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Nagano Pref. Shimotakaigunyamanouchimachi Hirao 6845
    This is a park where you can watch bathing monkeys in a hot spring and it is also popular with foreign tourists as a place to see “snow monkeys”. All the monkeys in the park are wild and enter the hot spring in order to be able to endure the cold temperatures of the severe winters which can reach minus 10°C. The park is located in the valley of Yokoyu River which brims with rustic beauty, and is located 30 minutes by foot from the free parking lot at Kanbayashi hot spring.

    The Snow Monkey Park is an area with some hot spa pools in a valley of the Yokoyugawa River. The Japanese macaques live wild in the forest above but will come down for food provided by the park...

  • Tsumago-juku
    Travel / Tourism
    Nagano Pref. Kisogunnagisomachi Aduma 2159-2
    One of the Nakasendo (old route from Tokyo to Kyoto) post towns which still retains the appearance of a post town from the Edo period. Tsumago-juku is known as the first post town in Japan to preserve its old town atmosphere and it has been designated as an important architectural preservation site and a regional conservation area. The town is full of places to see such as Koi-iwa (Carp rock), one of the three famous rocks, the Waki-Honjin Okuya (a National Important Cultural Property), Nagiso Museum of History with displays on the history of Nagiso Town and the Kisoji Road, and the preservation of Tsumago-juku.
  • Harunire Terrace
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Nagano Pref. Kitasakugunkaruizawamachi Nagakura 2148
    Located in a commercial facility that serves as the entrance to the Hoshino Area in Karuizawa Town, Kitasaku County, Nagano Prefecture, the concept of this store is “everyday Karuizawa.” Taking on the role as the hot spring town for Hoshino Onsen Tombo-no-Yu, it features 15 stores that include restaurants and shops. Inside the facility which features a wood deck construction and nine buildings is a space full of abundant scenery that incorporates a grove of more than 100 Japanese elm trees which had been growing there naturally. There are also book cafes and unique miscellaneous good shops, and visitors can experience the vacation home life that is typical of Karuizawa.
  • Sugadaira Highland
    Travel / Tourism
    Nagano Pref. Uedashi Sugadairakougen
    "A highland sprawling at the bases of Mt. Neko and Mt. Azumaya. Situated 1,300 meters above sea level, the area's lush natural scenery and cool climate, even in summertime, has resulted in it being nicknamed the ""Davos of Japan."" There are trekking and hiking course in the area, farms, a comprehensive sports facility, the Radio Observatory, and many other facilities of interest to tourists."
  • Fujimidai Kogen Ropeway Heavens Sonohara
    Travel / Tourism
    Nagano Pref. Shimoinagunachimura Chisato 3731-4
    The ropeway connects Fujimidai Kogen at an elevation of 800 meters to a point 1,400 meters high. From there change to the lift to reach the observation deck at an elevation of 1,600 meters. You can see the view as it changes from season to season from the gondola and lift as it passes through the magnificent natural scenery. Take joy in the different seasons with skunk cabbage in spring, carpets of flowers in summer, and the changing colors of the leaves in autumn. In autumn too it’s possible to witness a sea of cloud from the observation deck. And also this place was selected by the Ministry of the Environment as the best place to see the brightest stars. Visitors can enjoy the beautiful starry sky on the night tour.

Nagano Main Areas

around-area-map

Nagano prefecture is an exciting mix of mountains, hot spring monkeys, and preserved Edo history. At the heart of the Japanese Alps, Nagano is one of the country’s most popular destinations, whether in winter for its snow sports and the much-loved Jigokudani Monkey Park or in the warmer months for discovering the undulating hills on foot. For fantastic Edo architecture, head to the Kiso Valley for a 60-kilometer stretch of quaint wooden buildings that marked the Nakasendo route 200 years ago.

Nagano Photo Album

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