Takayama is located in the heart of the Japanese Alps. It retains much of the atmosphere of old Japan and is renowned for its fine crafts and traditional streets, lined with temples and teahouses.
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Top things to do in Takayama
Cycle in the countryside
Escorted by a local guide and driver, head out of Takayama to the rural farming villages of Hida, 30 minutes to the north of the city. Here you can take the opportunity to travel deeper into rural Japan on a cycling tour through the rice fields and countryside. Your English-speaking guide will take you on a 2.5-hour ride, with the beautiful Hida mountain range as a backdrop. There will be some inclines to reach a waterfall and views of the northern Alps. The tour also visits minka (traditional wood farmhouses) and a local hot spring.
Explore Takayama's historic district
The focal point of Takayama's historic district is Kami Sannomachi Street, which has been designated an area of preservation as it has some of Japan's most important traditional buildings. The street is lined with preserved historic wooden houses and retains much of its original atmosphere. Look out for various food stalls along the street, where you can purchase local snacks and produce. Nearby is Jinya House, which served as the local government office until 1969 and is now open to the public as a museum. The present building complex consists of various rooms for administrative purposes, offices, kitchens, residential space and a courtroom. Also worth a visit is the Kusakabe Museum, formerly the residence of powerful merchants under government patronage.
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