History / Culture / Tour Spots in Gifu Area

  • Takayama Jinya
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    4.0
    1116 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Gifu Pref. Takayamashi Hachikenmachi 1-5
    Takayama Jinya was where prefectural governors and deputies exercised government since Hida was put under direct control of the Shogunate in 1692. The purpose of direct jurisdiction was access to the abundant timber and underground resources. After the Meiji Restoration, this building was also used as the Takayama prefectural government building. In order to conserve Takayama Jinya, 16 years of repair and reconstruction work were undertaken and were completed in 1996. There were 60 regional headquarters and sub-headquarters nationwide at the end of the Edo period, but the Takayama Jinya is the only building left in existence today. Takayama Jinya has been certified with two stars in the Michelin Green Guide Japan.

    Fantastic experience on governor housing. It is very educational and could be boring to some. Enjoy the little garden. Quite a historical moment.

  • Shirakawa-go
    Travel / Tourism
    Gifu Pref. Onogunshirakawamura Ogimachi
    A village located in Ogi-machi, Shirakawa Village, Ono County, Gifu Prefecture where many old-fashioned “gassho-zukuri” style homes, distinguished by their steep thatched roofs, can still be found. Still used as living spaces today, this rare collection of buildings has been designated a National Important Preservation District for Groups of Traditional Buildings as well as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. From the picturesque scenery of these traditional homes backed by mountains in the distance, visitors can catch a glimpse of the lifestyle and ingenious measures of a Japanese mountain village living in harmony with nature. There are also numerous souvenir shops and restaurants, and this popular destination is visited by great numbers of people from around the country and the world.
  • Takayama Festival Floats Exhibition Hall
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    4.0
    621 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Gifu Pref. Takayamashi Sakuramachi 178
    The Takayama Festival is one of Japan’s three great Hikiyama Festivals and registered a UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage. This hall has a standing exhibit of yatai, the gorgeous floats that are the festival’s main attraction. It’s on the precincts of Sakurayama Hachimangu Shrine, at the center of the festival action. Four of the 11 yatai used in the fall’s Takayama Festival are on display, and they change them annually in March, July, and November. They also maintain a TV room where you can watch a video of the festival, as well as a reference area with festival paraphernalia and documents. It’s a great way to learn about the festival’s history and happenings in detail.

    Interesting exhibition of some of the floats used in April and October. Glad we did it but it only takes 20 minutes to view the floats. You are given headphones which enhances the experience.

  • Takayama Museum of History and Art
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    4.0
    160 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Gifu Pref. Takayamashi Kamichinomachi 75
    The Takayama Museum of History and Art in Takayama City, Gifu Prefecture has a collection of around 75,000 items relating to folk traditions, of which 900 are on permanent display. There are 14 display rooms with exhibits focusing on how the castle town developed and the unique culture of its residents; topics covered by the displays include the Takayama Festival, “machiya” (traditional wooden townhouses), the creation of the castle town, famous writers and artists that had a connection to the Takayama area, and the famous monk and Buddhist statue carver Enku, who also had a close connection with the Hida area. The buildings in which the Museum is located were originally warehouses, built from Japanese Cypress wood, belonging to the Nagata family of merchants; they are highly atmospheric. There is no charge for entry to the Museum.

    One of the few attractons open for Covid. I didnt expect much but was greatly surprised at how long I stayed here. I highly recommend. Quite a bit of English.

  • Ogaki Castle
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    3.5
    192 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Gifu Pref. Ogakishi Kuruwamachi 2-52
    With its unusual four-tier main tower, Ogaki Castle has become a beloved symbol of Ogaki City. Ogaki Castle is famous as having been the headquarters of Ishida Mitsunari (the commander of the Western Army) at the time of the Battle of Sekigahara. In the Castle museum, visitors can view a diorama of the Battle of Kuise-gawa, and Rensho Kinzei-no-Sho (a prohibition jointly signed by the commanders) of the Western Army and Eastern Army immediately prior to the Battle of Sekigahara. There is also an experiential activity zone where visitors can handle matchlock muskets, spears and bows that were actually used during the Sengoku (Warring States) period. Ogaki Castle is located around 10-minute walk from JR Ogaki Station.

    Ogaki Castle is located in the very center of the city, and even if you walk from JR station, it takes only 10 minutes. This castle is unfortunately a reconstruction. So I didn’t enter inside, but...

  • Wada House
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    4.0
    310 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Gifu Pref. Onogunshirakawamura Ogimachi 997
    Wada House is an example of a Shirakawa town thatched-roof ridgepole Gassho style house. It is the largest Gassho style house remaining in Shirakawa Village, and the house has a frontage of 25.48 meters and a depth of 12.74 meters. The current state of preservation of the gardens, hedges, rural district and waterways is also good and it looks beautiful. Although it is currently being used as a dwelling, you can take a tour of the house’s interior, and a fire is always set in the irori fire pit all year round, so you will also be able to make yourself at home around the irori fire pit. In 1995, the house was designated as a Cultural Property of Japan.

    Visiting Wada house allows you to travel back in times when big families used to live and farm together; allows you to visualize how each member in the family was involved in different errands; the...

  • Chiyobo Inari Shrine (Ochobo-san)
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    4.0
    137 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Gifu Pref. Kaidushi Hiratachousangou 1980
    The main enshrined deities are Taiso-no-Okami, Inari-no-Okami, and Oyagami. Yoshitaka, the sixth son of Minamoto-no-Hachimantaro Yoshiie, at the time of establishing a branch family was granted by Yoshiie that the ancestral spirits be protected forever. After that, their descendant Mori Hakkai opened the village of Suwaki. It was these gods that became the origin of the shrine. It is one of the three major Inari (god of harvest) in Japan, and two million people come to worship here every year. The shrine is said to generate business prosperity. Worshipers purchase sake and fried tofu at a shop near the entrance of the shrine and make offerings to the gods. Along the road leading up to the shrine you’ll find many shops.

    This is a nice small market walk through Kaizu city. It is very intimate with a lot of food markets, small souvenir shops, restaurants, plant shops, clothing shops, arare shops, snack shops, Kushi...

  • Sakurayama Hachimangu Shrine
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    4.0
    168 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Gifu Pref. Takayamashi Sakuramachi 178
    The Sakurayama Hachimangu Shrine is a Shinto shrine in Takayama City, Gifu Prefecture that is dedicated to the tutelary deity of the area. According to tradition, the origins of the Shrine date back to the reign of the Emperor Nintoku, when Prince Naniwa-neko Takefurukuma no Mikoto, who had come to the area to subjugate an evil monster, prayed for victory at this site. The Shrine is closely associated with the Autumn Festival that is one of the two Takayama Matsuri (Takayama Festivals), the other being the Spring Festival that is associated with the Hie Shrine; the Takayama Matsuri has been designated as a National Important Intangible Folk Cultural Property. Some of the “Yatai” (decorated floats) used in the Takayama Matsuri procession are on display in the Takayama Festival Floats Exhibition Hall within the Shrine precincts (the floats on display are rotated), giving visitors the opportunity to view the magnificent decoration, which is a tribute to the skill of Hida region craftsmen, from close to.

    This is a very quiet Shinto Temple, easy walk from the station (10-15 minutes) walk. A long the lane leading to the temple are old Japanese house. The temple is free and very nice surrounding. Quiet...

  • Takayama Showa Museum
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    4.5
    136 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Gifu Pref. Takayamashi Shimoichinomachi 6
    "Takayama Showakan is an indoor museum with displays that recreate the retro townscape of the late 1950s and early 1960s. It is located near the Yasukawa Intersection along National Route 158, which bisects the entertainment district of the city of Takayama. Aspects of the life and culture of that era are faithfully portrayed, including old-style candy stores and hostess bars. Looking at the actual advertising boards from that era, visitors feel as if they have traveled back in time. Another feature of this museum is that visitors can touch and handle actual artifacts of the period and ride vehicles that are placed along the ""street."" Of course, photography is allowed. Materials concerned with pro wrestling and World War II give visitors a full sense of what life was like back then."

    Dont miss this gem if you are in Takayama. It made our little family of 4 step back in time. You can touch objects, enter recreated rooms and shops and get lost in the past for a bit. If you have...

  • Gifu-Kakamigahara Air and Space Museum
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    4.0
    113 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Gifu Kakamigahara-shi Shimogiricho 5-1

    A somewhat out of the way location. With GPS it was found. The aircraft examples inside are remarkable. The information is quite interesting. I found the space section to be very good. I can’t say...

  • The Gifu Great Buddha (in the Shoho-ji Temple)
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    4.0
    149 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Gifu Pref. Gifushi Daibutsuchou 8
    Also known as the Kago Daibutsu, the Gifu Great Buddha (Gifu Daibutsu) is located in the Kinpo-zan Shoho-ji Temple in Gifu City; this Buddha statue has been designated by Gifu Prefecture as an Important Cultural Property. It ranks as one of the “Three Great Buddha Statues of Japan,” and is the largest dried lacquer Buddha statue in the country. To create the statue, a wooden framework was built around a central pillar cut from a large Gingko tree; a bamboo lattice was then installed around the wooden framework, and clay was plastered onto the lattice. After this, copies of the complete Buddhist scriptures were affixed to the clay, and then lacquer and gold leaf were applied. With the Great Buddha’s friendly, slightly smiling expression and the peaceful atmosphere of the Daibutsuden hall where the statue is situated, a visit here can induce feelings of calm and serenity. The charge for admission to the temple is 200 yen for adults, 100 yen for children.

    While this Buddah isnt as grand as some of the others in Japan, the fact that it was created with a paper mache base made it rather interesting. Not as busy as the others and made for a nice stop...

  • Kanda House
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    4.0
    188 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Gifu Pref. Onogunshirakawamura Ogimachi 796
    This old private house with a gassho-zukuri sloping roof was built in the late Edo period (around 1850). It's approximately seven minutes on foot from the Shirakawa-go Bus Terminal. It belonged to the Kanda family who brewed sake in Shirakawa-go. Because of the layout and the many handprints from the carpenters on the roof trusses, it's considered an outstanding example of gassho-zukuri slope roofed architecture. The fire in the traditional irori hearth burns year-round, and you can enjoy homemade wild herb tea brewed with water heated over it in an iron kettle. Looking around the rest of the building is fine too, and you can bring your pet with you if you hold it. Reservations are recommended.

    I loved this house. Best of the three to visit. Lots to see, and use a QR reader for much more information.

  • Sunomata Ichiya Castle (Ogaki City Sunomata Historical Resource Center)
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    3.5
    66 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Gifu Pref. Ogakishi Sunomatachousunomata 1742-1
    The Sunomata Ichiya (“overnight) Castle is said to have been erected in a single night by Toyotomi Hideyoshi in 1566. On top of its ruins, the Sunomata Ichiya Castle (Historical Resources Museum) was built in 1991. It is a place for learning about Taiko Hideyoshi, particularly his relationship with Sunomata Castle. Approximately 20 minutes by car from Gifu-Hashima Interchange on the Nashin Expressway.

    1566年に木下藤吉郎 が一夜にして砦を建てたと 伝えられている墨俣一夜城。 織田信長はこの城を拠点に 美濃を制覇したという。 見た目にも美しい素晴らしいお城。 橋こら見る城は格別な素晴らしさ! 城内はさまざま展示があり 歴史を学ぶことができて良いです。 天守からの風景も良いです。

  • On-sen-ji Temple
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    4.0
    121 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Gifu Pref. Geroshi Yunoshima 680
    This temple is 15 minutes on foot from JR Gero Station. Temple legend says that Yakushi Nyorai, the Medicine Buddha himself, announced the presence of Gero's hot springs. Climbing the 173 stone steps from the Jizo-do subtemple, you'll come to the temple gate. There's a sweeping view of Gero's townscape from the temple grounds. The tranquil vantage point and peaceful scenery make it a relaxing place for a break while sightseeing. They hold the Yakushi Festival annually on March 8, as well as free Zen meditation workshops on the 13th of every month that are open to all. In autumn they illuminate the colored leaves of the trees around the temple in the evening. The leaves stand out vividly against the night sky as you stroll along or gaze at them from the foot bath.

    We walked to this temple from Yunoshimakan after breakfast and a soak in the outdoor hot spring (with snow falling on our heads). The snow was so fresh that we could kick it up. The temple itself...

  • Eihoji Temple
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    4.5
    94 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Gifu Prefecture Tajimi Tottoriyama Town 1-40
    This temple was founded in the Kamakura period (1185-1333) by Muso Soseki. Its honorary name Kokeizan comes from how the surrounding mountain scenery resembles China’s Kokei Ravine at Lushan. Eihoji’s garden is superbly beautiful and has been designated a Historic Site and Natural Monument. There are many sights you shouldn’t miss, like the Kaisando and Kannondo, both National Treasures. The principal object of worship, an image of Kanzeon Bosatsu, is a Prefectural Cultural Property. There are also sacred items like an image of Binzuru, a deity with healing powers, and a collection of Sentai Jizo statues.

    Hidden at the bottom of a hill on the outskirts of town is a pituresc set of temples and a wonderful tree. We have made several trips here. You need to walk but with the exception of winter (when the...

  • Inaba-jinja Shrine
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    4.0
    57 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Gifu Pref. Gifushi Inabadori 1-1
    The Inaba Shrine has for many centuries been a place of great spiritual importance for people living in the region. Dedicated to the worship of the Shinto deity Inishiki-Irihiko-no-Mikoto, the Inaba Shrine was originally a place where prayers were offered to protect against floods. In recent years, the Shrine has become very popular with worshippers wishing to pray for the safety of family members or for business prosperity, with people paying their first visit to a shrine in the New Year, with families celebrating the Shichi-Go-San festival, and with worshippers offering up prayers in relation to childbirth, traffic safety, construction or irrigation projects, etc. The Shrine preserves a set of chronicle scrolls of its own origin and history, which has been designated an Important Cultural Property by Gifu Prefecture. The Inaba Shrine is located around 15-minute drive from JR Gifu Station.

    (ぜんこうじ)と言います。真言宗醍醐派の寺院で、山号は愛護山。本尊は善光寺如来。善光寺安乗院ともいいます。通称は「岐阜善光寺」、「伊奈波善光寺」。美濃新四国八十八ヶ所の第1番札所です。お賽銭がなんとPayPayで納められるんでびっくりしました。拝観料は、無料です。

  • Hikaru Museum
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    4.5
    85 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Gifu Pref. Takayamashi Nakayamamachi 175
    This museum is in a residential area of Nakayama-machi, Takayama City, bordered by the Kawakami River and National Route 41. Its exterior really stands out. Made of stone, it’s built to look like a Mesoamerican pyramid with a temple atmosphere. It primarily exhibits ancient artifacts and works of art like Japanese paintings, ukiyoe prints, and crafts. There are lots of displays that kids will like, including realistic models of dinosaurs, fossil replicas, and fossils excavated from Hida. Plenty of other items are on display across their expansive site too, which includes a Noh theater and an outdoor exhibition area.

    Visit this place for its amazing architecture. As for what is inside the building, the opinion seems to be divided but its a little bit of everything under the sun from dinosaurs to modern art. There...

  • Nagara River Ukai Museum (Gifu Nagara River Museum of Ukai Tradition)
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    4.0
    95 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Gifu Pref. Gifushi Nagara 51-2
    This museum in Gifu City, Gifu Prefecture is a six-minute walk from the Ukaiya bus station located a short bus ride from Gifu Station. The museum was opened in 2012 in order to propagate, spread, and protect the tradition of ukai (cormorant fishing) in the Nagara River, which has continued for over 1,300 years. The museum’s first floor features an area where you can learn hands-on about ukai as well as exhibits including examples of traditional ukai attire. On the second floor, visitors can enjoy learning about ukai from exhibits about usho (cormorant fisherman) and their yago (trade names), exhibits on historical figures with deep connections to ukai, a “guidance theater,” and more. The museum also rents out conference rooms and other facilities.

    This is a great insight into the ukai. Miserable weather outside prevented me from better enjoyment of the live birds, in their full breeding plumage. There should be some interaction with the u...

  • Art & Festa Forest in TAKAYAMA
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    4.0
    74 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Gifu Pref. Takayamashi Chishimamachi 1111
    This museum dedicated to the Takayama Festival is located a 20-minute drive from Takayama Nishi Interchange on the Tokai Hokuriku Expressway. The museum’s underground dome, which was created by excavating the mountain’s slope, houses a number of exhibits. These include the Heisei Yatai, eight festival floats created from scratch for the first time in 150 years, and interactive marionette exhibit, and the world’s largest taiko drum. Once a year in spring, all of the festival floats are set up in the parking lot, where visitors can enjoy marionette shows performed atop the floats, taiko drum performances, and more. The adjacent Insect Collection of the World features exhibits including specimen of insects from around the world including Japanese Luehdorfia butterflies.

    You can catch the loop bus from the main station-well worth the trip,A large bunker displaying festival floats with mechanical puppets.On the hour each float is activated in turn-really...

  • Yoshijima Heritage House
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    4.0
    99 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Gifu Pref. Takayamashi Oushinmachi 1-51
    This old kominka house was the residence of the Yoshijima sake brewing family for generations. It has been designated a nationally Important Cultural Property. A large ball of cedar twigs hangs from the eaves above the entrance, and a noren curtain at the door has the two stripes of the family crest. The inner hall and entrance hall have a high vaulted ceiling, and the main pillar and other woodwork displays splendid craftsmanship. The interior gives you a real feel of its long history, especially in the drawing room where Toko Shinoda's work is on display.

    Almost everybody come to Takayama just for the old town lane, and you will expect the crowds especially at morning and afternoon time. Almost a long queue in the food area and the old houses there...

Gifu Areas

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Tucked away in the very center of Japan, Gifu prefecture houses mountains, old towns, and one of Japan’s greatest hot springs, Gero Onsen. A tour of the prefecture’s traditional architecture will take you from the mountain-enveloped wooden streets of Takayama to the mountain village of Shirakawago, where visitors can explore 250-year-old thatched roofed houses known as gassho-zukuri.

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