Hakogi Sennenya House

Michiminami-1-4 Yamadachō Tsukuhara, Kita-ku, Kōbe-shi, Hyōgo-ken 651-1264, Japan

A Japanese Cultural Treasure, Hakogi Sennenya House is the oldest surviving private residence in Japan. Built during the Muromachi period (1336–1573), it shows how the reasonably rich lived in the 1300s. (Not bad at all, once you get used to the idea of livestock sharing your living quarters.) The spaces are surprisingly large, especially by modern Japanese standards. You can still see tool marks in the woodwork, and the separate archive center has farming equipment of the era, as well as a model of the grounds at their peak. A good step into the past.

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