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What you can see in Shirakawa-Go Village, Gifu Takanayama, Japan

What you can see in Shirakawa-Go Village, Gifu Takanayama, Japan
Keita
Keita
Updated

Shirakawa-go is one of the most popular destinations in Japan and it’s accessible in a one hour bus ride from JR Takayama station via the Nohi bus. It was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in the year 1995 and is known for its unique houses with iconic roofs, as well as the beautiful illuminations during the winter season. Here are 7 places in Shirakawa-go you definitely have to check out! All the locations highlighted here are walkable from the Shirakawa-go village.

1. Deai-Bashi Suspension Bridge, the gateway to Shirakawa-go

Deai-Bashi Suspension Bridge

The Deai-Bashi Suspension Bridge is a bridge that everyone visiting Shirakawa-go will walk across. It is the bridge that connects the main car park to the Shirakawa-go village, as no automobiles are allowed into the village itself. This bridge, serving as the entrance to the wonderful main village, it is also a place where you can enjoy one of the best sceneries of the area. A panorama shot of the village, mountains and river can be taken. In spring, the flowers will be blooming with Sakura flowers, and in winter, the mountains and village roofs will be covered in snow.

Deai-Bashi Suspension Bridge

Address: Ogimachi, Shirakawa Village, Ono, Gifu

Opening Hours: 24 hours

Access: Right after the bus terminal

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Shirakawago, gifu, Japan and also compare the prices with airbnbs in Shirakawago, gifu, Japan

2. Bird’s eye view from Ogimachi Castle Observation Deck

View from Ogimachi Castle Observation Deck

The Ogimachi Castle Observation Deck is the best place to admire the absolute beauty of Shirakawa-go. Many tour buses will make a brief stop at this place prior to heading to the Shirakawa-go village itself – that’s how beautiful the view from this observatory is. During winter time, you will be able to admire the village illuminated, with pure white snow atop the roofs of the houses. This place is about 20 minutes from the Shirakawa-go main village by foot, but is highly worth visiting. In fact, most of the photos that you find when doing an internet search for “Shirakawa-go” are likely taken from this deck!

Ogimachi Castle Observation Deck

Address: Ogimachi, Shirakawa Village, Ono, Gifu

Opening Hours: 24 hours (closed in winter)

Access: 20 minute walk from Shirakawa-go bus terminal

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Shirakawago, gifu, Japan and also compare the prices with airbnbs in Shirakawago, gifu, Japan

3. Ogimachi gassho-zukuri, the main attraction of Shirakawa-go

Ogimachi gassho-zukuri
Source: 桜 小町

Ogimachi gassho-zukuri is a place within the village where you can view the olden style buildings of Shirakawa-go up-close. An information counter as well as rest area is located at the Ogimachi gassho-zukuri area, and this is where you can collect your information about Shirakawa-go prior to exploring the village.

Ogimachi gassho-zukuri

Address: 167 Ogimachi, Shirakawa Village, Ono, Gifu

Opening Hours: 9:00am - 4:00pm

Website: Ogimachi gassho-zukuri

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Shirakawago, gifu, Japan and also compare the prices with airbnbs in Shirakawago, gifu, Japan

4. The 300 year old Wada House

Wada House

The Wada House is the gassho-zukuri house that represents Shirakawa-go the most. It has a history of about 300 years old and is listed as an Important Cultural Property of Japan. Visitors are able to enter the Wada House, and various artifacts are exhibited at the first and second floor. Here, you will be able to learn about the lifestyle of the villagers in Shirakawa-go, as well as the history of the Wada family.

Wada House

Address: Wada Residence, Ogimachi, Shirakawa Village, Gifu

Opening Hours: 9:00am - 5:00pm

Website: Wada House

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Shirakawago, gifu, Japan and also compare the prices with airbnbs in Shirakawago, gifu, Japan

5. The silk worms of Tooyama House

Sericulture
Source: Pixabay

The Tooyama House was built in the 1820s and is another building to be listed as an Important Cultural Property of Japan. In the past, silk was not bought from overseas but instead produced locally. The 2nd to 4th floor of the house is actually used for sericulture, or silk farming, and you will be able to observe the silkworms in action.

Tooyama House

Address: 125 Ogimachi, Shirakawa Village, Ono, Gifu

Opening Hours: 10:00am - 4:00pm (closed on Wednesday and 31st December, 1st January)

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Shirakawago, gifu, Japan and also compare the prices with airbnbs in Shirakawago, gifu, Japan

6. Explore the history of Myozenji Temple

Myozenji Temple
Source: 桜 小町

Myozenji Temple is a temple that was built in 1748, and has been an important part of Shirakawa-go’s history throughout the years. Myozenji Temple also has the biggest gassho-zukuri style building in Shirakawa-go, which serves as a quarters for the priests of the temple. It is open to the public and you will be able to view the lifestyle of priests in Japan. There are also various artifacts on display where the history and importance of this temple can be appreciated.

Myozenji Temple

Address: 2499 Ogimachi, Shirakawa Village, Ono, Gifu

Opening Hours: April to November: 8:30am - 5:00pm, December to March: 9:00am - 4:00pm

Access: Within Shirakawa-go

Website: Myozenji Temple

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Shirakawago, gifu, Japan and also compare the prices with airbnbs in Shirakawago, gifu, Japan

7. The Doburoku festival of Shirakawa Hachiman Shrine

Shirakawa Hachiman Shrine

Shirakawa Hachiman Shrine is said to be first built during the 8th-century, and the main shrine compound was rebuilt in 1636. This shrine is a place that has been serving the villagers of Shirakawa-go for a long period of time, and is a crucial part of Shirakawa-go history. The Doburoku festival is also held at Shirakawa Hachiman Shrine in mid-October every year, where villagers pray for safety as well as peace for the village. This place also served as the model for the hometown of the main characters from the anime “HIgurashi no Naku Koro Ni” or “When They Cry”. Anime fans, do check this place out too!

Shirakawa Hachiman Shrine

Address: 556 Ogimachi, Shirakawa Village, Ono, Gifu

Opening Hours: 24 hours

See our full list of recommended Hotels in Shirakawago, gifu, Japan and also compare the prices with airbnbs in Shirakawago, gifu, Japan

Plan your day well!

A one day trip to Shirakawago will likely be enough, but these are some of the spots that you definitely cannot miss! If you are intending to travel to the central area of Japan such as Nagoya, there are also highway buses that bring you to-and-from Shirakawa-go village, so do check them out. Plan your trip well so that you can walk around the village in a smooth manner, enjoy!

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Hi there, thanks for stopping by to read my articles. I travel to various regions in Japan and constantly find myself discovering something new. Hope my work will help in your planning and enjoy...Read more

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