What to Do in Hida Furukawa What to Do in Hida Furukawa

What to Do in Hida Furukawa


2017.07.07

NAVITIME TRAVEL EDITOR

What to Do in Hida Furukawa

Hida Furukawa, a castle town nestled in the mountains is picturesque with traditional townhouses, a 400 year old canal and charming craft stores. Established around the same time as Takayama city, Furukawa also has a central river and some perfectly preserved traditional housing in a historic district. Although a lot quieter than Takayama, Hida- Furukawa attracts many visitors around in mid April to witness gigantic handmade floats parade down the old streets during the famous Furukawa festival Yatai. The festival is respected Folk Cultural Property and one of Japan's three 'naked festivals' where half-clad men dance through the town drumming on a Okoshi Daiko (drum).

  • 01

    The Setogawa Canal

    The Setogawa Canal is one of the most iconic spots in Furukawa. This narrow canal cuts through the heart of the city, running between the Araki-gawa river and the Hida Crafts Museum. Setogawa Canal, originally used to wash vegetables, is now home to over 1,000 flaming orange carp. Tiny wooden huts that resemble bird houses, are filled with bags of bread crumbs for visitors to purchase by leaving 100 yen in the boxes. If you happen to be there on the 15th of January, watch the canal light up with Japanese candles to celebrate Santera Mairi, a small winter festival.

    The Setogawa Canal

    The Setogawa Canal

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  • 02

    Traditional townhouses

    Just one road up from the canal, lies the central Furukawa district where beautifully preserved traditional townhouses stand in a row. In fact, the area is such a treat for the eyes that it received the Scenery Design Award in 1985 and has been a popular local tourist destination ever since. Look out for white “kumo” (cloud) designs carved into the beams of the buildings; a symbol of the Hida craftsmen. Most of the buildings still operate as small businesses like craft shops or cafes. Along the parallel streets of Ichinomachi, Ninomachi and Sannomachi, you will spot large white storehouses with emblems on the doors.

    Traditional townhouses

    Traditional townhouses

  • 03

    Mishima Japanese Candle Shop

    Master candlemaker Junji Mishima and his son run a traditional candle shop located in the Old Town of Furukawa on Ichinomachi street. The shop has been in the family for seven generations and frequented by all visitors to Hida Furukawa hoping to pick up some handmade crafts. The best part is you can actually watch Mr Mishima as he takes you step by step (in Japanese) through his candle-making process. Mishima Candle shop is one of the ten Japanese candle shops of it's kind in the country and crowded by visitors from open to close.

    Mishima Japanese Candle Shop

    Mishima Japanese Candle Shop

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    จังหวัดกิฟุเมืองฮิดะฟุรุกาวะโจอิจิโนะมาจิ3-12
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    0577734109
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  • 04

    Local sake tasting

    The Hida area is famous for high quality sake, made from locally produced rice and high quality spring water. There are two breweries in Hida Furukawa, identified by the large sakabayashi balls hanging under the eaves outside the entrance to Watanabe Brewery and Kaba Sake Brewery. Sakabayashi or sugidama are large ball-like objects woven made from Cedar leaves that are replaced annually around November to inform people of a new sake harvest and are iconic symbols in the area surrounding Takayama City. Both breweries offer a wide selection of sake and tastings allowing you to enjoy some of the best local sake in Gifu.

    Local sake tasting

    Local sake tasting

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    0577730012
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    3.0

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    0577733333
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  • 05

    Takumikan Craft Museum

    At the craft museum, Hida no Takumi Bunka, you can witness first hand the carpenters at work and watch how they interlock wooden blocks together in the traditional hound's-tooth check style. For a small fee of 300 yen, stroll through the exhibitions or try your hand at miniature wooden puzzles. Climb up the stairs to the second floor for stunning views of the iconic Setogawa canal.

    Takumikan Craft Museum

    Takumikan Craft Museum

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    Gifu Pref. Hidashi Furukawachouichinomachi 10-1
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    0577733321
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