Toyama prefecture is situated in the mid-west of Japan and reaches the Sea of Japan. Its core city is Toyama, which has an estimated population of 420,000 inhabitants. This region is home to plenty of colleges, universities, and excellent farmland that’s aided by the subtropical climate. Toyama is also home to many industries that are important to the region and Japan’s economy such as robotics, software development, banking, and energy.
But there’s also a more mysterious side to Toyama thanks to its rich ancient heritage. There’s many temples, homes, buildings, and castles that are remnants of bygone eras that are worth discovering.
1. Sotoshu Chokeiji Temple
One of the most mysterious places in Toyama is the Sotoshu Chokeiji Temple. The surrounding grounds of this Buddhist temple feature plenty of towering trees and bamboos, which are unmistakably beautiful. Moreover, there’s 500 monk statues lined-up that add to the mystery of the space and the nearby cemetery.
Sotoshu Chokeiji Temple
Address: 1882, Goso, Toyama, Toyama Prefecture, Japan
2. Mt. Kureha Park Observatory
You’ve just arrived in Toyama and have noticed that the city is quite pleasant and the nearby Japanese Alps are absolutely majestic. But there’s only so much you can see from ground level or your hotel room. It’s best to take in all this scenery from a great vantage point, such as the Mt. Kureha Park Observatory that’s within walking distance from the town center and near Kureha Park.
Mt. Kureha Park Observatory
Address: Anyobo, Toyama 930-0103, Toyama Prefecture, Japan
Website: Mt. Kureha Park Observatory
3. Botanic Gardens of Toyama
Toyama’s Botanic Gardens are dotted with all sorts of flora and fauna from Japan and around the world. The grounds are incredibly picturesque, but the nearby lakes, restaurant, and road train only make these gardens that bit more alluring. Spend an afternoon or the entire day; you’ll have much to admire and will snap plenty of photos.
Botanic Gardens of Toyama
Address: 42 Fuchumachi Kamikutsuwada, Toyama 939-2713, Toyama Prefecture, Japan
4. Former Uchiyama Residence
皆さん、ご存知ですか。 本日は、さくらの日です。 さくらの日は、日本さくらの会が1992に制定し、 3×9＝27の語呂合わせと、古代中国で考えられた 季節を表す方式：七十二候（ななじゅうにこう） の「桜始開（さくらはじめてひらく）」の期間...Posted by 株式会社理想経営 on Sunday, 26 March 2017
One of Toyama’s hidden gems is the former Uchiyama residence. And there’s a good reason for this since the residence consists of a traditional Japanese home with a well-maintained garden and gorgeous cherry blossoms. The entrance fee is only 200 JPY (1.80 USD), and it’s a great way to spend an hour or two.
Former Uchiyama Residence
Address: 903 Miyao, Toyama 930-2211, Toyama Prefecture, Japan
5. Fugan Unga Kansui Park
This spacious and clean park has a stylish Starbucks coffee shop built near the water canal. It’s a great spot for short walks, jogging, relaxing, or to just kick back with a warm cup of coffee. The park usually attracts local crowds and different groups of visitors throughout the day. It’s about a minute walk from the JR Station, so it’s easily accessible to people who have just arrived in Toyama.
Fugan Unga Kansui Park
Address: Minatoirifunecho, Toyama 930-0805, Toyama Prefecture, Japan
Website: Fugan Unga Kansui Park (in Japanese)
6. Toyama Glass Art Museum
The Toyama Glass Art Museum is a striking and modern building that’s designed by the famous architect, Kengo Kuma. This museum houses plenty of impressive art pieces made out of glass, and a coffee shop. Visitors are likely to spend 1-2 hours to check out all the exhibitions on display.
Toyama Glass Art Museum
Address: 5-1 Nishicho, Toyama 930−0062, Toyama Prefecture, Japan
Website: Toyama Glass Art Museum
7. Toyama Castle
Toyama Castle is one of the most notable attractions in the area, and that’s not surprising considering how beautiful Japanese castles are. One noticeable feature about Toyama Castle is how striking this building is during the day and night when it’s all lit. But you’ll visit it during the day, where you’ll explore its interiors and view thousands of gorgeous cherry blossoms within the castle grounds. Toyama Castle isn’t that large, so visitors can transverse it within an hour.
Address: 1-62 Hommaru, Toyama 930-0081, Toyama Prefecture, Japan
Website: Toyama Castle (in Japanese)
8. Ushidake Onsen Ski Resort
Most ski resorts tend to operate during the day, but Ushidake Onsen Ski Resort offers patrons a nighttime ski experience with stunning neon lights. This resort caters to both skiers and snowboarders, and they’ll be getting close and personal with Mt. Yaotome and the surrounding alps. The various ski slopes are fun and cater to skiers of all experience levels, and there’s also some good lookout spots around the resort.
Ushidake Onsen Ski Resort
Address: 2 Yamadakodaninakane, Toyama 930-2116, Toyama Prefecture, Japan
9. Toyama Denki Building
While Toyama is a modern Japanese city, it still prides itself on its rich heritage and properly maintains its older buildings. Just a stone’s throw from Toyama station lays the Toyama Denki Building, which features old classical architecture and houses restaurants and stores. All the original interior fittings are well maintained and just accentuate the building’s classical charm.
Toyama Denki Building
Address: 3-1 Sakurabashidori, Toyama 930-0004, Toyama Prefecture, Japan
Website: Toyama Denki Building (in Japanese)
10. Wholesale Merchant Morike
This Tokugawa-era merchant homestead doesn’t have anything to sell, but it’s well maintained and a point of interest for history buffs. There’s plenty of interesting sculptures, artworks, and artifacts inside the premises. English-language pamphlets are available, which give visitors plenty of information about all the artifacts, the home, and its original owners. The interiors are spacious with some nice-looking tatami mattresses, so there’s plenty of room for visitors to move around in.
Wholesale Merchant Morike
Address: 108 Higashi Iwasemachi, Toyama 931-8358, Toyama Prefecture, Japan
A prefecture with much to see and do
There’s no denying that Toyama prefecture has many excellent natural spots, ancient buildings, and interesting attractions to draw in the curious visitor. These places offer travelers plenty of fun and fascinating things to do and see.
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