Ainu women in Ainu village museum,Shiraoi Poroto Kotan,Shiraoi,Hokkaido,Japan
Lucas Vallecillos/© Lucas Vallecillos
Situated about 100 kilometers (62 miles) south of Sapporo, this open-air museum—actually a replica village—is one of the best places to learn about the Ainu, northern Japan’s indigenous people. The five houses that make up the site are set right on Lake Poroto, and each highlights different aspects of Ainu culture and lifestyle. Visitors can watch performances of folk dances and songs, explore re-created typical Ainu households and try traditional activities ranging from wood carving to embroidery.