The Beauty of Japan
Collected by Clare Olivares, AFAR Local Expert
Takayama, Gifu Prefecture, Japan
Located in the Japanese Alps, Takayama was founded in the 16th century by Lord Kanamori and boasts an elegant historic district called San-machi Suji. The town still retains traditional Japanese charm and architecture. The streets are narrow,...
Kamakura, Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan
Less than an hour south of Tokyo, Kamakura is a popular coastal town and home to the Great Buddha. This bronze statue of Amida Buddha, which stands on the grounds of Kotokuin Temple, has a height of 13.35 meters. It is the second tallest bronze...
6 Chome-11 Hanasatomachi, Takayama-shi, Gifu-ken 506-0026, Japan
East of the picturesque city of Takayama you'll find the famous ice cave. It is the highest snow cave of Japan, located 800m above sea level. It is famous for its huge amount of helictites and stalactite formations. As you leave the caves put a...
Nara, Nara Prefecture, Japan
When traveling in Japan I like to stay in ryokans, a type of traditional Japanese inn that originated in the Edo period. Breakfast and dinner are usually included in the ryokan price so even though it may seem expensive it actually is a deal. You...
Ainokura, Nanto, Toyama Prefecture 939-1915, Japan
Ainokura Village, located outside Toyama, is a unique cultural experience. Designated a World Heritage site in 1995, it is home to over 80 residents. Because families still live and farm on the land visitors are asked to be respectful. The village...
566 Kōyasan, Kōya-chō, Ito-gun, Wakayama-ken 648-0211, Japan
By staying overnight at a Buddhist monastery in Koyasan (Mount Koya), I fulfilled a long held dream. It was quite a unique experience, and a peek behind the curtain to see how monks in a monastery actually live. It was quite something to see them,...
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