Hachiman Castle Town Trip 2
Find the most popular sightseeing spots in Gujo!
A Trip to the Best part of Hachiman Castle Town
While you walk around the city, you can see the local people using the water along the water path.
Make your own hand towel by silk screening originated in Gujo!
We are going to walking around at the castle town to feel the history and culture here. You can only find the old townscape, old-style café in Gujo Hachiman. Let us start our trip to sense the tradition and the most recent part of Gujo Hachiman!
Gujo Hachiman Station
A nostalgic station building certified as a Tangible Cultural Property
The entrance of Gujo Hachiman
Gujo Hachiman Station is a main station of the local railway Nagaragawa Railway. It started operating in 1929 and certified to be a Tangible Cultural Property in 2015. The building was restored to the original appearance in 2017. This wooden nostalgic atmosphere with whitewashed walls and wooden windows tells us how it looked like in the past. Café, bicycle rental shop, souvenir shop and information center are also found here at the station.
You can see a Gujo Odori lantern outside the station. Map introducing spots nearby is also placed. Get a map and start your journey!
Station building of Gujo Hachiman Station of Nagaragawa Railway. Its appearance was rebuilt back when it was first opened in 2017. This evocative station building also has a café and bicycle rental shop.
It is easy to take a bus to get to the town center from the station. Please remember to check the timetable before you go.
Former Hachiman Government Building Memorial Hall
* If you drive in this trip, you can start here.
Parking area : Former Hachiman Government Building Memorial Hall
A nostalgic tourist information center as the base of our Hachiman trip
This Former Hachiman Government Building Memorial Hall was renewed from Hachiman Town Office into tourist information center of Gujo Hachiman. This building is also designated as Registered Cultural Property. You can take some rest and see the rapid of Yoshidagawa River flowing down from here. There are free rest place, restaurant and shops On the 2F, there are also Gujo Odori Dance workshop (Reservation needed) and Summer Only Gujo Odori Course during Gujo-odori Dance Festival in Kawasaki Hall. Souvenir corner is selling all kinds of souvenirs in Gujo Hachiman. Please visit this memorial hall during your trip!
This nostalgic building renewed from the town office is good for taking photos.
You can hear the sound of water stream when you pass in front of the building. As there is parking area nearby, it can be a base in your trip if you travel by car.
You can check the schedule of events and fairs at the information counter.
Gujo Hachiman Hakurankan (Gujo Hachiman Museum)
Come and enjoy more during your Gujo Hachiman trip!
This museum was a tax office built during Taisho era (1912 – 1926). Displays and exhibitions introducing the charming points of this castle town of water and dance, Gujo, are available inside the museum. You can know more about the history and culture of Gujo after visiting this museum. There is demonstration of Gujo Odori dance throughout the year. Staff wearing Yukata (Casual & informal cotton Kimono) explains the meanings of all 10 types of dances and shows us how to dance. You can practice dancing together too.
This nostalgic building was a Tax Office built during Taisho era.
Important Intangible Cultural Properties, like Gujo Indigo Dye and fishing tool Gujo Biku (Basket for carrying fish) were displayed at the “Technology” corner.
At the “Water” corner, you can know more about Nagaragawa River which is very important to all people of Gujo Hachiman and Sogisui which is selected to be the best 100 waters.
Shokuninmachi, Kajiyamachi (Old townscape)
Know how people lived in Edo era by seeing the old townscape
Shokuninmachi and Kajiyamachi are both Preservation Districts for Groups of Historic Buildings.
As the name of both areas, blacksmiths, doctors, carpenters and other kinds of workmen and craftsmen were living in these two districts. The narrow frontage of the building and long construction are the characteristics. to prevent fire spreading among houses. There is “Wing wall” to prevent fire spreading from one house to another. As there were 2 huge fires in Kitamachi, the north of Yoshidagawa, in the past, people were very alert to fire. Fire buckets are placed in front of every houses.
Fire buckets hanging in front of a house.
Old townscape is still remaining.
See the townscape from the gate of Chokyoji Temple at the end of the town.
Experience making food replica at an old-style house with history of over 150 years!
Gujo Hachiman is in fact the largest producer of food replica. Sample Kobo was redecorated from a house with age 150 years old at Hashimoto-cho, located at the center of Hachiman area. Food replica making is very popular. Sweet tart food replica making (990JPY each, with tax) is easy that children can make by themselves. It only takes 20 minutes to do piping whipped cream and decorating fake fruit. You can bring it home as a souvenir.
Food replica workshop for children is very popular. You can bring it home as a souvenir.
A workshop redecorated from an old house of age over 150 years old.
Products, like mobile phone strap, key holder and magnet, are all for sale at the shop.
A café having all the attractiveness of Gujo. Linkage of people and things.
Heading west from Former Hachiman Government Building Memorial Hall, you can see Ito Café which opened in 2014. Under its concept of linkage of people and things, they provide sweets and snacks made with local fresh vegetables and fruits. Local people and visitors from outside love this café and most of them stay for quite a long time here as the owner Ms Ayaka Kamimura is very nice.
A good place to take a rest during your trip.
Sweets menu changes seasonally. Local ingredients are used for most of the dishes.
You can ask Ms Kamimura about her recommended sightseeing spots!
Yanakamizu-komichi (Yanaka Water Lane)
Take a break at this famous water spot of Gujo Hachiman
Yanakamizu-komichi is a water path made by around 80 thousands of boulders. This water path, under the willow trees, is surrounded by old-style houses. It is also a rest place for the locals. Children love playing in the water too.
You can touch the clear water.
It is suitable to walk under the trees and take a break.
See the water path up from a small bridge.
Water used by the locals in their real lives
Walking along this water lane
Igawa-komichi is a water lane located next to Former Hachiman Government Building Memorial Hall with width of 1 meter and length of 120 meters. You can see many kinds of carps and river fish swimming in the water lane. Local people use this water in their daily life like chilling watermelon in summer. This water lane continues through the town and is used for fire prevention. There are 3 places for washing clothes which are also important places for social gathering. This water lane is part of the life of all local people.
See the carps and fish swimming in the water lane.
Walking along the water lane under the trees. All people you meet will become part of your memory of this trip too.
You can feel the old days of Japan while walking along the lane.
Takara Gallery Workroom
Making your own Japanese towel at the birthplace of silk screening
Gujo Hachiman is the birthplace of silk screening. Takara Gallery Workroom is a popular spot
where you can easily try silk screen printing. Inside this renovated old townhouse, you can experience the silk screen printing of Tenugui (Japanese towel), which is an essential item of Gujo Odori Dance Festival, a summer tradition in Gujo. Small children can also participate. It is a fun time for parents and children to choose their own patterns. If you combine a wide variety of patterns and colors to create an original piece, you can create your own unique memory!
After making this towel with all friendly staff here, you can bring it home as a souvenir.
Staff teaches us carefully. You do not need to worry even if it is your first time.
Many cute designs are displayed inside the shop. Choosing your design is fun!
Gujo Mokuri (Wooden clogs) & Ishiyama Gofukuten (Yukata)
Gujo Odori Dance Festival from July to September
Get your own Yukata & Geta for Gujo Odori Dance Festival
Gujo Mokuri is using Hinoki (Japanese white cedar) from Gujo to make these Geta (Wooden clogs) for dancing. They are very durable that you can wear them dancing for a whole night. The height of the heels matches Yukata making girls look more beautiful. You can choose your own clog thong in the shop. Staff will help you adjust to fit your feet. Ishiyama Gofukuten is a unique Kimono shop providing rental Yukata during Gujo Odori Dance Festival. Over 100 kinds of high-quality Yukata are available. Original print of Gujo is also very popular. The owner of the shop is a member of Gujo Odori Preservation Society. She helps dressing Yukata with skills that Yukata does not fall apart even if you dance a lot.
Many Gujo Odori steps look better in yukata, so please get your Yukata and wear your Geta in Gujo Odori Dance Festival.
This shop is using Hinoki from Gujo to make these Geta (Wooden clogs) for dancing. Choosing clog thongs is fun!
Rental Yukata is available during the Gujo Odori Dance Festival in Ishiyama Gofukuten.
Yukata in original print of Gujo Hachiman.
Join Gujo Odori Dance Festival in summer nights!
During Gujo Odori Dance Festival from July to September
Dancing over night! The main event in summer in Gujo Hachiman! Everyone is welcomed to join us!
Gujo Odori Dance Festival is one of the biggest Bon dance festivals in Japan with history of over 400 years. Many dance lovers come to Gujo to join from all over the country. It is the main summer event in Gujo-shi. It is also famous for its duration from mid-July to early September. It is the longest Bon dance festival in Japan with around 30 nights. Uranbone (Overnight Dance) from 13th to 16th of August is the most impressive. Thousands of people are dancing from 8pm at night till the next morning. Craps and sound of getas are creating a sense of unity. If you are good at dancing, you may receive a “Odori-menkyo” meaning license of dancing!
Uranbone (Overnight Dance) is from 8pm at night till the next morning.
Dancers surrounding the roofed tower.
Learn how to dance “Kawasaki”, “Harukoma”, “Yacchiku”, “Gengenbarabara” and other songs in videos before you come.