Beautiful Shirakawa-go and Takayama

Trip Start Jul 28, 2007
Trip End Aug 30, 2008

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Thursday, March 20, 2008

After a much needed day sleeping and relaxing at the onsen in Fujinomiya, we all head out on a long journey into the Hida district. The trip via Nagoya includes a beautiful and scenic train ride through the mountains, and the weather is noticeably cooler when we arrive. After a couple idle hours enjoying Takayama, we board our bus for magical Shirakawa-go!

Wow! This place is amazing! The bus takes you even deeper into the mountain, through all kinds of tunnels, and before you know it, you're in a different world! You're immersed in a land from long ago, as you descend into the tiny gassho-zukkuri (the housing style...see photos) filled village. Definitely a big highlight of the trip, things don't get much more traditional than this! The friendly owners of our farmhouse showed us to our cozy rooms, and would later prepare a wonderful dinner and breakfast for us. We strolled around the village, enjoying the different buildings, and in the evening had a soak in the local onsen. We woke up early in the morning to enjoy more of the village, and check out the foggy view over the area. It was a pity to have to leave the place so early!

But off we went, to see more of Japan! We bused back to Takayama, where we would spend the night at a lovely minshuku (family-run a pension). It was fun seeing the old streets in Takayama, though it was bit chilly. The streets in Takayama are much like those found in Kyoto's Gion district, albeit less crowded and Geisha-less. The following morning we would take the scenic train-ride back into Nagoya, and then boarded the Shinkansen into Kansai!
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