Tokushima Prefecture Overview : A Natural Paradise Nestled in the Mountains
Surrounded by the Sanuki Mountains, Tokushima Prefecture is a rural paradise with plenty of options for those seeking to enjoy Japan’s natural beauty. While known for its natural beauty, there’s no lack of things to see in the cities as well. From peaceful mountain hikes to vibrant festivals, there’s something for every traveler.
Awa Odori is a dance festival that takes place in Tokushima Prefecture every year from August 12th - 15th. The region has been famous for its yearly dance festival for over 400 years. Awa Odori originally started as part of Japan’s yearly Bon Odori festival. Traditionally a Buddhist custom, the festival is held across Japan to honor one’s ancestors and has evolved into a national holiday where families reunite. Tokushima Prefecture has become particularly well-known for its unique take on the festival and draws more than one million people every year. The dancers dress in elaborate costumes to perform choreographed dances through the streets of cities throughout the prefecture.
Take a trip off the beaten path and explore one of the most untouched, pristine places in Japan – the Iya Valley. Here, you can catch a glimpse at traditional life in Japan while taking in the breathtaking scenery. As you go farther into the valley, signs of modern Japan quickly fade and it may feel as though you’ve gone back to a simpler time. This area is great for people who want to go past the tourist traps for a more authentic experience. You can cross old-fashioned vine bridges, overlook 600-meter drops, explore quaint villages, enjoy locally grown cuisine, and experience nearly forgotten ways of life.
All Japanese cities and prefectures tend to have regional specialties, and Tokushima Prefecture is no exception. Celebrated for its agriculture, visitors can enjoy a wide range of seasonal fruits and vegetables, such as Naruto City’s famous kintoki sweet potatoes. Awa Odori chickens are also raised in the region and have quickly become known for their high quality and signature flavor. Named after the prefecture’s annual dance festival, Awa Odori chicken is a very lean breed of chicken, known for its slightly chewy texture. There are other regional dishes you’re unlikely to encounter in other areas, such as Tokushima ramen, which is made from a rich pork broth and usually served with sliced pork and a raw egg on top.
Tokushima Prefecture is a place where tranquility and liveliness co-exist side by side to create a truly unique experience. Whether you want to relax, seek out cultural insights, or simply enjoy nature, Tokushima Prefecture has something to offer.
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- Iya Valley
- Tokushima Pref. Miyoshishi Ikedachoumatsuo - Nishiyanyama Village