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Takayama

Known for Historical Buildings, Mountains and Festivals

Enjoy exploring the fascinating ancient buildings, bustling markets and stunning mountain views of this city located high in the Japanese Alps.

How do you get to Takayama?

Takayama is a unique city in Japan’s Gifu Prefecture. Although this region is known as Japan’s crossroads, Takayama is located high in the Japanese Alps and the city’s relative isolation has meant that its culture has developed over the past 300 years without much influence from the outside world. Find ancient temples, heritage farmsteads and castles in this mountainous region.

The Hida-Kokubunji Temple is Takayama’s oldest structure. Explore the three-story pagoda and see a 1,200-year-old ginkgo tree. Take a step back in time at Hida Folk Village. This open-air museum consists of nearly 30 farmhouses that span the centuries. The village displays artifacts from various historical periods and features traditional Japanese handicraft demonstrations.

For spectacular views, take a bus to the summit of Mount Norikura. This dormant volcano, the third tallest in Japan, features wide plains and deep crater lakes. The road up the mountain is often closed because of heavy snowfall. For more panoramic views of the Northern Alps, visit Shinhotaka Ropeway. This aerial lift takes you up Mount Hotakadake, one of Japan’s tallest mountains. Pamper yourself at the mountain’s spa resort.

Explore the ruins of Matsukura Castle. The grounds are home to several hundred cherry trees that explode into blossom during spring. Several events, such as the Sengoku Noroshi Festival, are held here during the blooming season. Takayama Jinya is a former government outpost. The main building has been immaculately restored and is now open to the public. Stop by the farmers’ market held outside every morning.

Takayama is renowned for its exceptionally talented carpenters. See their handiwork in palaces and temples in Kyoto and Nara. As you walk through the city, take note of the buildings’ immaculately crafted decorations. Handmade wooden souvenirs, available at the local market, are very popular keepsakes.

You can easily get to Takayama by bus or by train. The city’s train station connects with most of the region’s cities and towns. You can reach Tokyo by train in just over 4 hours.

Best neighborhoods to visit in Takayama

Things to do in Takayama

Housed in a traditional Edo Period government complex, this interesting museum tells of Takayama's significance to the Tokugawa Shogunate.

Admire the detailed carvings, metalwork and puppets of the floats housed in this exhibition hall. Learn why the floats were originally decorated in this way.

Experience authentic Takayama life at this teeming morning market, where traditionally dressed farmers hawk fresh produce and local wares. 

You can study the exhibits at Hida-no-Sato, a museum with a story of its own, during your travels to Takayama. Discover the hot springs in this culturally-rich area.

Step back in time and learn more about local history with a stop at Sanmachi-suji in Takayama. Find some time to visit the temples or monuments in this culturally-rich area.

Discover what life was like for mountain farmers during the Edo period at this preserved rural village.

Tickets & Tours

On this tour you'll transported by coach from Nagoya to see UNESCO world heritage village of Shirakawago, stroll the historical town of Takayama and go shopping at one of the biggest outlet malls in central Japan.

Tickets & Tours

Scope out shops, temples, and museums in bustling Nagoya, explore seaside sights in Toyama, and admire charming grass-roofed houses in the village of Shirakawa-go. Dive into the heart of Japan with this 3-day bus pass with convenient transfers from Chubu Centrair and Komatsu airports.

Tickets & Tours

Cruise through central Japan, scoping out everything from traditional gassho-style houses in Shirakawa-go to bird's-eye views of the Hida Mountains. Enjoy convenient transfers from Chubu Centrair or Komatsu Airport and link up with highway buses ready to whisk you between sights over 5 days.

Tickets & Tours

Enjoy Shirakawa-go, Kenrokuen Garden and Lake Biwa while heading to Osaka from Takayama, all in one day! Start your day by strolling around the Takayama Morning Market until departure time (8:45).Explore what the market has to offer and indulge in the Japanese traditional snacks and goods available.

Tickets & Tours

Going to Tokyo from Takayama has never been this pleasant before! The bus will pick you up at Takayama Station and take you on a day trip to a Japanese Sake Brewery, Lake suwa, Lake Kawaguchi, and Mount Fuji while heading to Tokyo.

Tickets & Tours

Situated in between the popular destinations of Tokyo and Kyoto, the mountainous of region of Nagano is the literal heart of Japan and a road less traveled by many international visitors.