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36 Sightseeing Spots in Nara! Carefully selected from famous places to hole-in-the-wall spots!

36 Sightseeing Spots in Nara! Carefully selected from famous places to hole-in-the-wall spots!


Nara Prefecture is home to many World Heritage sites, national treasures, and important cultural assets. While the standard tourist spots such as Todai-ji Temple and Horyu-ji Temple are attractive, there are actually many other great tourist spots as well! In this issue, the author, who has worked in the travel industry for 7 years, will introduce you to the best places to visit in Nara.

Author of this article

Nara Area

There are many attractive spots in Nara City, from shrines and temples that are familiar to visitors on school excursions to hidden gems that have been attracting attention in recent years. Let us first introduce you to 13 recommended spots in the Nara area.

Todaiji Temple

Todaiji Temple was built by Emperor Shomu in 743.
The highlight of the temple is the Daibutsuden, one of the largest wooden buildings in the world. The current building was reconstructed in the Edo period (1603-1867) and houses a huge 15-meter-high seated statue of Rushanabutsu (the Buddha).
Another highlight of Todaiji Temple is the Kongorikishi statue enshrined in Nandaimon.
Both statues, created in just 69 days during the Kamakura period by Unkei and Kaikei and their disciples, are very powerful!
Todaiji Temple is also home to many other historical buildings that should not be missed, such as Hokkedo (Sangatsu-do) and Senjyudo. It is one of Nara's most popular tourist spots, so be sure to visit.

"Facility Overview "
Address: 〒630-8587 406-1, Zaze-machi, Nara City
Phone number: 0742-22-5511
Opening hours (Daibutsuden): April-October ... 7:30-17:30 / November-March ... 8:00-17:00
*Opening hours for Hokke-do, Sente-do and Todai-ji Museum are different.
The front of the kanban:Middle school students and above...600yen, elementary school students...300yen
*Fees will be charged at the Great Buddha Hall, Hokke-do Hall, Sente-do Hall, and Todai-ji Museum.
Closed: None

Nara Park

Nara Park is a city park in Nara Prefecture, adjacent to World Heritage Sites such as Todaiji Temple, Kasuga Taisha Shrine, and Kofukuji Temple.
The vast 511-hectare site is surrounded by beautiful nature, and visitors can enjoy the changing scenery of the four seasons throughout the year, including cherry blossoms and autumn leaves.
And speaking of Nara Park, you cannot miss the deer. About 1,200 deer live in the park, and many of them can be seen around Sarusawa Pond and Kasugano.
In addition, you can feed the deer by purchasing deer crackers from an open-air market or vending machine.
Some of the deer, as soon as they find a deer rice cracker, pose as if they are asking "for a blessing! "Some of the deer even pose as if they are bowing to you. Why not come and enjoy the abundant nature while interacting with these adorable deer?

"Facility Overview "
Address: Kasugano-cho, Nara City, Nara Prefecture, 630-8212, etc.
Phone number (Nara Park Office): 0742-22-0375
Liberation time: 24 hours
Admission: Free
Closed: None

Kasuga Taisha

Kasuga Taisha is the main shrine of Kasuga Shrine, which has approximately 3,000 shrines throughout Japan.
It is said that in 710, Fujiwara no Fuhito welcomed Takemikazuchi no Mikoto, the Fujiwara clan's clan deity, and enshrined him at the foot of Mount Kasuga to protect the Heijo-kyo Capital.
The main shrine, which enshrines the four pillars, is one of the highlights of the shrine.
Kasuga Taisha is also famous for the approximately 1,800 stone lanterns and 1,000 hanging lanterns on its grounds. Every year on Setsubun and August 14 and 15, all the lanterns are set on fire, creating a mysterious spectacle.

"Facility Information "
Address: 〒630-8212 160 Kasugino-cho, Nara City
Phone number: 0742-22-7788
Opening hours (main hall): March to October...6:30 to 17:30 / November to February...7:00 to 17:00
The opening hours of the Couple's Daikoku Shrine, prayer hall, etc. are different.
Admission: Free
*A 500 yen entrance fee is required for special visits.
Closed: None
National Treasure Hall and Kasuga Taisha Botanical Garden are closed on certain days.

Xingfu Temple

Kofukuji Temple, along with Kasuga Taisha Shrine, was founded by Fujiwara no Fuhito.
The temple was originally called "Yamashina-ji "built by Nakatomi Kamatari and his wife in Yamashina-ku, present-day Kyoto, but was moved to its present location and named Kofuku-ji Temple when the capital was moved to Heijo-kyo.
Two towers rise in the precincts of the temple, including the 51-meter tall five-story pagoda, which is the second tallest pagoda in Japan after Toji Temple in Kyoto Prefecture, and is well known as the symbolic tower of Nara City.
The other tower, the three-story pagoda, is the oldest building in Kofukuji and is said to have been rebuilt in the early Kamakura period (1185-1333), and is also one of the highlights of the temple.

"Facility Information "
Address: 〒630-8213 Nara City, 48 Noto-Oji-cho
Phone number (Honbo temple office): 0742-22-7755
Opening hours:9:00~17:00
Admission: Adults - 700 yen, Junior and senior high school students - 600 yen, Elementary school students - 300 yen
Closed: None

Nara National Museum

Opened in 1865, the Nara National Museum is the second oldest museum in Japan.
The museum is divided into four galleries: "Nara Buddhist Sculpture Hall ""Bronze Sculpture Hall ""East New Wing ""West New Wing ", each with Buddhist-related sculptures, paintings, and crafts.
In addition, the Research Center for Buddhist Art Materials, located near the entrance on the approach side of Kasuga Taisha Shrine, collects and displays books, photographs, and other materials related to Buddhist art.
If you are touring around Nara's old temples and shrines such as Todaiji and Kofukuji, you should definitely stop by this spot together.
In particular, the "Shosoin Exhibition "held every fall is a must-see! It is filled with valuable exhibits such as Emperor Shomu's favorite items and items used in the Todaiji Buddhist memorial service. The exhibits change every year, so you will never get bored no matter how many times you visit.

"Facility Information "
Address: 〒630-8213 Nara City, 50 Noto-Oji-cho
Phone number: 050-5542-8600
Hours: 9:30-17:00 (until 20:00 on Saturdays only)
Admission: General: 700 yen, University students: 600 yen, High school students and younger: free
Closed: Mondays, Year-end and New Year holidays (December 28 - January 1)

Naramachi Nigiwai no Ie

Next, I would like to introduce you to the sightseeing spots in Naramachi. Naramachi is an area that corresponds to the outer capital of Heijo-kyo, and is lined with many traditional townhouses.
A must-stop around this area is the Naramachi Nigiwai-no-Ie, a two-minute walk from Genko-ji Temple.
The facility was opened after Nara City renovated a townhouse built by an antique dealer about 100 years ago. Visitors can see Japanese-style rooms, a tea ceremony room, an earthen floor, and a Japanese garden, all of which retain the atmosphere of those days.
Events such as the Kamaishi Experience and machiya lectures are held regularly, so be sure to check the official website for event information when you visit.

"Facility Information "
Address: 〒630-8333 Nara City, Nakashinya-cho 5
Phone number: 0742-20-1917
Opening hours:9:00~17:00
Admission: Free
Closed: Wednesday

Naramachi Karakuri Toy Museum

The Naramachi Karakuri Toy Museum is a facility that literally exhibits traditional karakuri toys.
The museum's collection of toys amounts to more than 200 items, from which 20 to 30 carefully selected toys are on permanent display. The collection is full of toys such as wooden dolls, windmills, and other toys that evoke the warmth of nostalgia of the olden days.
All of the toys on display can be played with freely, allowing for a wide range of enjoyment for adults and children alike.
At the workshop in the back of the building, a hands-on workshop for making karakuri toys is held almost once a month on Saturdays or Sundays. Those who plan to visit on the day of the event are welcome to try their hand at making toys as well.

"Facility Information "
Address: 〒630-8338 7 Kinyo-cho, Nara City
Phone number: 0742-26-5656
Opening hours:9:00~17:00
Admission: Free
Closed: Wednesdays, Year-end and New Year holidays (December 29-January 3)

Naramachi Brewery

Nara Beer Naramachi Brewery opened in 2017 and is the first craft beer brewery in Nara City.
Craft beer is handcrafted beer produced on a small scale, and the Nara Beer Naramachi Brewery currently offers six to eight different types of craft beer.
We recommend "Naramachi Ale "made with Yamato Hojicha. It is popular for its light flavor with a hint of hojicha.
Open from midday, it is also perfect for those who want to quench their thirst between strolls in Naramachi! The food menu also includes such delicacies as persimmon leaf sushi and homemade liver patties, making it a great choice for those looking for a place to savor local ingredients.

"Facility Information "
Address: 956-2, Kidera-cho, Nara City, Nara Prefecture, 630-8306, Japan
Phone number: 0742-95-9700
Business hours: 11:00-19:00
Closed: Unscheduled holidays

Mahoroba Daibutsu Pudding Honpo

Mahoroba Daibutsu Pudding Honpo is a pudding specialty store with nine stores in Nara.
Made with simple ingredients, "Mahoroba Daibutsu Pudding "is the store's signature product, and in recent years has become a popular souvenir of Nara.
Among them, many tourists visit the main store, Pudding Forest Café, located along Narayama Boulevard to buy souvenirs.
The pudding-like color of the exterior and the stylish, fairy-tale interior are just adorable! Many customers use the café while purchasing souvenirs.
In the café space, visitors can taste six kinds of Mahoroba Great Buddha pudding, as well as soft-serve ice cream and drinks in special glasses.

"Facility information "*Head office
Address: 1073 Narasaka-cho, Nara-shi, Nara 630-8104
Phone number: 0742-23-7515
Office hours:11:30~17:30
Closed: Unscheduled holidays

Heijo Palace Site Historical Park

Heijo Palace Site Historical Park is a national park built on the site of the Heijo Palace, which is believed to have existed at the north central edge of Heijo-kyo, the capital of the Nara Period.
The project began in 2008 with the aim of preserving Nara's historical and cultural heritage. Today, many buildings from those days, including the first Daigoku-den Hall and Suzaku-mon Gate, have been restored and have become representative tourist attractions in Nara.
The park is largely divided into three spots: "Primary Daigoku-den-in Area ""Vermilion Gate Plaza Area ""Secondary Daigoku-den Area ", and restored facilities and relic exhibits can be seen in each area.
One of the most important not to be missed is the Daigokuden Gate, which was just completed in 2022. Located south of the first Daigoku-den-in, this main gate allows visitors to see both Suzakumon and Daigoku-den from the door entrance.
In the future, the East Tower is scheduled to be restored next to the Daigyokumon. It is recommended to visit the site after its completion as well as before its completion to see this precious sight.

"Facility information "*Heijo Palace Site Administration Center
Address: 〒630-8012 Nara City, Nijo-Oji Minami 3-5-1
Phone number: 0742-36-8780
Opening hours: 9:00 - (closing hours vary by facility)
Admission: Free
Closed: Varies by facility

Tang Zhaoti Temple

Toshodaiji Temple was built in 759 by the Chinese monk Ganjin.
At the time of its founding, the temple was a private temple of Ganjin, with only a lecture hall, a sutra library, and a treasure house. After Ganjin's death, the main temple buildings, including a main hall, were completed through the efforts of his disciples.
Among the many historical buildings that remain in Toshodaiji today, the Kondo Hall, the only one remaining from the Nara period, is a must-see!
In the inner sanctuary, the main image of Rushanabutsu, a standing statue of Yakushi Nyorai, and a standing statue of Senju Kannon (the thousand-armed Goddess of Mercy) stand side by side, creating a somber atmosphere.
Toshodaiji is also famous for the "fan-throwing ceremony "held every year on May 19. The heart-shaped fan, called "Houfan (treasured fan) ", which is thrown from the second floor of the Drum Tower, is believed to be beneficial for driving away evil spirits, ensuring a good harvest and safe delivery.

"Facility Information "
Address: 〒630-8032 13-46 Gojo-cho, Nara City
Phone number: 0742-33-7900
Opening hours:8:30~17:00
Admission: Adults - 1,000 yen, Junior and senior high school students - 400 yen, Elementary school students - 200 yen
Closed: None

Nishidaiji Temple

Saidaiji Temple was one of the seven great temples of the southern capital in the Nara period (710-794), and along with Todaiji Temple and Yakushiji Temple, received protection from the Imperial Court.
It is said that at the time of its founding, the temple was comparable in size to Todaiji Temple, with the Yakushi Kondo and Maitreya Kondo halls and five-story pagodas on the east and west sides standing side by side in the large temple area.
Although the temple area is now smaller than it was then, it is still home to many national treasures and Buddhist statues, making it a perfect spot for those who wish to tour Nara's history.
It is also a great opportunity to see up close the seated statue of Priest Eison, a national treasure, as well as the main statue of Shakyamuni Buddha Yakushi (Medicine Buddha).
In spring, fall, and winter, the Treasure House, which houses the treasures of Saidaiji Temple, is open to the public for special exhibitions, so those who wish to see the valuable exhibits should visit during these times.
You can check the official website to see when it will be open to the public, so be sure to check it out when you visit.

"Facility Information "
Address: 〒631-0825 Nara City, Nishi-Oji Shiba-cho 1-1-5
Phone number: 0742-45-4700
Opening hours:8:30~16:30
Admission: Adults - 800 yen, Junior and senior high school students - 600 yen, Elementary school students - 400 yen
Common entrance fee for the three halls of Hondo, Aizen-do, and Shio-do
*There is a separate fee for the Treasure Museum.
Closed: None

Yakushiji Temple

Yakushiji Temple was founded by Emperor Temmu to cure Emperor Jito's illness, and was completed in Asuka during the reign of Emperor Monmu. Later, with the relocation of the capital to Heijo, the temple was moved to its current location in 718.
Due to repeated fires, only the East Pagoda remains, but the statues of Yakushi Sanzon enshrined in Kondo and Sho-Kannon Bosatsu enshrined in Toindo are designated as national treasures as representative heritage of the Hakuho period.
"The East Pagoda, known as the frozen music ", is sure to captivate people's hearts. It is exquisitely balanced with the decorative roof, called the "costume floor," and is so beautiful that one could gaze at it for a long time.
Yakushiji Temple is also famous for its interesting Dharma talks. If you are interested, check the schedule of Dharma talks on the official website before you go.

"Facility Information "
Address: 457 Nishinokyo-machi, Nara City, Nara 630-8563
Phone number: 0742-33-6001
Opening hours:8:30~17:00
Entrance fee: Varies depending on the period of the year.
Closed: None

Ikaruga/ Ikoma Area

Ikaruga has many temples closely associated with Prince Shotoku, and visitors can enjoy a leisurely stroll through the area.
Ikoma, on the border between Osaka and Nara prefectures, also has an amusement park with the oldest attractions in Japan, making it a great place to travel with children. Here are six recommended spots in the Ikaruga/ Ikoma area.

Horyuji Temple

The first sightseeing spot in the Ikaruga area that cannot be missed is Horyu-ji Temple.
Horyu-ji Temple was built around 607 by Prince Shotoku and Emperor Suiko, and is well known as the first temple in Japan to be registered as a World Heritage site.
In the precincts of the temple, many buildings from various periods including the Asuka period still remain, and in the Seiin temple complex, you can see Kondo, which enshrines the three principal images of Shakyamuni, the oldest five-story pagoda in Japan, and the central gate with its famous Entasis pillar.
In the To-in complex, there is the Yumedono Hall, which houses the statue of St. Kannon and a statue of Prince Shotoku's filial son, etc. Every spring and fall, a special opening of the hall is held to show the statue of the hidden Buddha, the Salvation Kannon.
Horyu-ji Temple is also home to many other attractions such as the Dahozoin Temple, Nandaimon Gate, and a monument to Shiki Masaoka's haiku. Even if you have visited Horyuji once before on a school excursion, why not come again?

"Facility Information "
Address: 〒636-0115 Ikoma-gun Horyuji Yamauchi 1-1, Hakuju-cho
Phone number: 0745-75-2555
Opening hours: February 22 - November 3...8:00 - 17:00 / November 4 - February 21...8:00 - 16:30
The front desk: General...1,500yen / Elementary school student...750yen
Closed: None

central palace of a Shinto shrine

Chugu-ji Temple is located behind the To-in complex of Horyu-ji Temple and was built according to the wishes of Empress Anahobe no Hashihito Kougo, the mother of Prince Shotoku.
When it was founded, it was built on the site of Empress Anahobe's palace, but it was moved to its present location around the end of the 16th century. After Queen Sonchi-joou entered the temple during the Tenmon period, it became a nun-monzeki temple that welcomed the imperial princesses of the palace family.
The highlight here is, without a doubt, the main statue, the Bodhisattva half-lotus. It is a masterpiece of the Asuka period, with an impressive archaic smile that seems to be gently smiling at you.
International art historians call it "one of the world's three smiling statues "along with the Mona Lisa and the Egyptian Sphinx.
Since the fee is discounted if you visit the temple together with Horyu-ji Temple, we recommend that you go there after visiting Horyu-ji Temple if you are going out.

"Facility Information "
Address: 〒636-0111 1-1-2, Horyuji Kita, Hatagurumi-cho, Ikoma-gun
Phone number: 0745-75-2106
Opening hours: October 1 to March 20...9:00 to 16:00 / March 21 to September 30...9:00 to 16:30
The front door material: adults...600yen, middle school students...450yen, elementary school students...300yen
Closed: Some days depending on events. See official website for details.

Dharma Wheel Temple

Horinji Temple is said to have been built in 622 by Yamashiro-no-Oe-no-Ohio, who wished to heal the illness of his father, Prince Shotoku.
The highlight is the three-story pagoda, one of the three Ikaruga Pagodas along with the five-story pagoda at Horyuji Temple and the three-story pagoda at Hokkiji Temple.
Once the largest and oldest three-story pagoda, it had been designated a national treasure since the Meiji period (1868-1912), but was destroyed by lightning in 1944 and rebuilt in 1975 through the efforts of writer Aya Koda and others.
Although its designation as a national treasure has been lifted due to the fire, the three-story pagoda, a perfect reproduction of the Asuka style, is still worth seeing. Listen to the sound of the wind bells, admire the beauty of the bright bengara-colored roof, and feel the unique charm of the young pagoda.

"Facility Information "
Address: 〒636-0101 1570 Mitsui, Motegumi-cho, Ikoma-gun, Nara
Phone number: 0745-75-2686
Opening hours: March to the end of November...8:00 to 17:00 / December to the end of February...8:00 to 16:30
Admission: Adults - 500 yen, Junior and senior high school students - 400 yen, Elementary school students - 200 yen
Closed: None

Ikoma Mountain Amusement Park

Ikoma-Yamagami Amusement Park was opened in 1929 on top of Mt. Ikoma, the border between Nara and Osaka Prefectures.
As an amusement park that has been in operation for more than 90 years, the park is filled with retro rides that evoke a sense of nostalgia!
The park offers a variety of attractions, including Japan's oldest large playground equipment ", which is still in operation since the park opened ", a flying tower, a merry-go-round, and an SL train, providing a full day of fun for both small children and adults.
Another attraction of Ikoma-Yamae Amusement Park is the spectacular view of Nara and Osaka. During the daytime, visitors can enjoy the Nara Basin and the Osaka Plain, and at night they can enjoy the romantic and beautiful night view.

"Facility Information "
Address: 2312-1 Nabata, Ikoma-shi, Nara 630-0231
Phone number: 0743-74-2173
Opening hours: 10:00-17:00
Admission material: no material
Closed: Thursday
Open on national holidays and during spring and summer vacations

Faqi Temple

Hokki-ji Temple is another temple associated with Prince Shotoku. It is said that the temple was founded when King Yamaboshi Taio converted Okamoto Palace (where Prince Shotoku lectured on the Lotus Sutra) into a temple in accordance with Prince Shotoku's will.
The 23-meter-high three-story pagoda on the temple grounds is designated as a national treasure and is the oldest and largest existing three-story pagoda in Japan after the three-story pagoda at Horin-ji Temple was destroyed by fire.
When you visit Horyu-ji and Horin-ji, be sure to visit Hoki-ji as well to compare the pagodas.
The area around Hokki-ji Temple is also famous for its cosmos blossoms. From October to November, when the cosmos is at its best, the area around Hokki-ji Temple is in full bloom, offering a beautiful view of the historical heritage and nature in harmony.

"Facility Information "
Address: 〒630-0102 1837 Oaza Okamoto, Bamakuru-cho, Ikoma-gun
Phone number: 0745-75-5559
Opening hours: Feb. 22-Nov. 3 ... 8:30-17:00 / Nov. 4-Feb. 21 ... 8:30-16:30
Admission: General: 300 yen, Elementary school students: 200 yen
Closed: None

Koriyama Castle Ruins

Koriyama Castle was built in 1580 by Junkei Tsutsui, and later ruled by Hidenaga Toyotomi, the younger brother of Hideyoshi Toyotomi, as well as the Mizuno, Matsudaira, Honda, and Yanagisawa families, making it the largest castle in Yamato.
The place is also famous for its cherry blossoms, but what is even more remarkable is the diversion stones used for the stone wall of the keep's tower.
The stonewalls of Koriyama Castle Ruins are littered with stones that have been converted from stones originally used for other purposes, such as stone Buddhas, the foundation stone of the Rajomon Gate, and a five-ring pagoda!
One of the most famous is the "Sakasa Jizo "located on the north side of the castle tower. This is said to have been piled up by Toyotomi Hidenaga when he expanded the castle.
At present, approximately 1,000 diversion stones have been identified. There are a variety of diversion stones, so please look for them.

"Facility Information "
Address: 2-255, Jounouchi-cho, Yamato-gun, Nara, 639-1011
Phone number (Yamato Koriyama Tourist Association): 0743-52-2010
Opening hours: 24 hours
Admission: Free
Closed: None

Tenri, Asuka, Kashihara area

The Tenri, Asuka, and Kashihara areas have many sightseeing spots with a history even older than that of Todaiji and Horyuji temples. There are also restaurants where you can enjoy Nara's gourmet food and facilities for children, making it impossible to visit all of them in a single day. The following are 13 recommended places to visit in the Tenri, Asuka, and Kashihara area.

Daijin Shrine

Oomigami Shrine is the oldest shrine in Japan, with Mount Miwa as its deity.
Since the deity, Ohmononushi no Okami, sits on the mountain, there is no main shrine, and worshippers face the mountain from the hall of worship.
In the spacious precincts of the temple, there are various spots including shrines such as Jinbo Shrine and Aorido Shrine, a treasure repository, and a couple of rocks, among which I especially recommend "Nade-Usagi "at the entrance of the sanjuroden.
It is said that the rabbit is placed there because the god, Omononushi no Mikoto, is the god who saved the White Hare of Inaba (Hare of Inaba). It is said that if you touch the same part of your body where you feel pain, the pain will be removed and your luck will increase.

"Facility Information "
Address: 〒633-8538 桜井市三輪1422
Phone number: 0744-42-6633
Time: Free
Admission: Free
Closed: None
URL: https: //oomiwa.or.jp/

Saika Ramen

Saika Ramen is a ramen restaurant in Tenri City that was established in 1968.
It is called the original Tenri Ramen, Nara's local delicacy, and attracts many customers every day, not only from the local area but also from outside the prefecture.
Saika Ramen is a so-called "stamina" ramen based on a secret homemade soy sauce sauce sauce with garlic and chili peppers, and is characterized by its tangy taste.
Ingredients include pork, chives, and a large amount of Chinese cabbage, an essential ingredient in Tenri ramen.
This ramen warms the body from the core, so it is especially recommended during the cold winter season, but it is also very popular during the hot season as its hearty soup helps prevent summer fatigue.

"Facility information "*Head office
Address: 91 Iwamuro-cho, Tenri City, 〒632-0076
Phone number: 0743-63-3165
Business hours: 11:00 - 24:00
Closed: None

Stone Stage Ancient Cemetery

Ishibutai Kofun is a burial mound located in the Ishibutai area of Asuka Historical Park.
Although it is not known when and whom it was built to bury, the most likely theory is that it was built in the late 6th or early 7th century to bury Soga Iruka's grandfather, Soga Umako.
The tumulus is made of more than 30 rocks, both large and small, with a total weight of approximately 2,300 tons. Of these, the ceiling stone is estimated to weigh approximately 77 tons.
The interior of the burial mound can be seen today as the side-anchored stone chamber is exposed. When you actually see the burial mound, you will definitely be overwhelmed by the rocks, which are larger than those seen in photographs.
It is amazing to see how such a large rock was transported, as well as the transportation technology of the time.

"Facility Information "
Address: 〒634-0112 133 Shimosho, Myongil-hyang Village, Koichi-gun
Phone number (Asuka Tourist Association): 0744-54-3240
Admission time: 8:30~17:00
Admission: General ... 300 yen, High school to elementary school students ... 100 yen
Closed: None

Takamatsuzuka burial mound

Takamatsuzuka tumulus, like Ishibutai tumulus, is located in Asuka Historical Park and can be seen in the Takamatsuzuka area.
It is a two-tiered round burial mound with a 23-meter-diameter lower section and an 18-meter-diameter upper section. It became famous in 1974 with the discovery of colorful murals in the stone chamber. One of them, a group of women on the west side, is colorful and has been introduced in textbooks and other publications.
When it was first discovered, it was thought to have been built in the late 7th or early 8th century, but excavations in 2005 revealed that it was built during the Fujiwara-kyo period (694-710).
Takamatsuzuka burial mound has many points that have yet to be clarified. When you visit, take a look around and experience the world of ancient mysteries.

"Facility Information "
Address: 〒634-0144 444 Hirata, Oaza, Akira-ka Village, Koichi-gun
Phone number (Asuka Management Center): 0744-54-2441
Admission Hours: 24 hours
Admission: Free
Closed: None

Takamatsuzuka Mural Museum

The Takamatsuzuka Mural Museum is a facility adjacent to the Takamatsuzuka burial mound. As the name suggests, this is a spot where visitors can see exhibits centering on the murals found in the Takamatsuzuka burial mound.
On display at the museum are "a current reproduction "of the original wall painting when it was first discovered, "a partial restored reproduction "of the painting after removing flakes and dirt to make it easier to see, and "a reproduced reproduction "of the painting plastered on tuff.
Although not all of the murals are authentic, the lifelike reconstructions of the murals are a sight to behold. In addition, replicas of sword ornamental fittings and wooden coffin fittings that were buried with the body are also on display in the museum.
If you visit the Takamatsuzuka burial mound, you should definitely stop by as a set.

"Facility Information "
Address: 〒634-0144 439 Hirata, Akane Village, Koichi-gun
Phone number: 0744-54-3340
Opening hours:9:00~17:00
Admission: Adults - 300 yen, college and high school students - 130 yen, junior high and elementary school students - 70 yen
Closed: Second Monday of April, July, November, and February, and year-end and New Year holidays (December 29-January 3)

Kitora Tumulus

The Kitora tumulus is the second mural tomb discovered in Japan after Takamatsuzuka tumulus.
A survey conducted in 1983 revealed murals painted inside the stone chamber, wooden coffin components and jade objects that had been used to house the deceased, and other artifacts.
Although it is not known who the buried person was, it is assumed that the tomb is that of a person of lower status than the buried person of Takamatsuzuka Kofun.
A recommended attraction is the dry rubbing plate next to the burial mound. The Kitora Tumulus has a full-size mural painting inside the stone chamber engraved on a metal plate.
You can copy the mural painting by placing a piece of paper on it and rubbing it with a dark pencil, so please bring paper and a writing utensil when you go.

"Facility Information "
Address: 〒634-0134 243 Abezan, Oaza, Akira-ka Village, Koichi-gun
Phone number (Kitora Tomb Mural Experience Center): 0744-54-5105
Admission Hours: 24 hours
Admission: Free
Closed: None

turtledove stone

Asuka Village is home not only to mausoleums and royal tombs such as Ishibutai Kofun Tumulus and Takamatsuzuka Kofun Tumulus, but also to many strangely shaped stone structures.
One of the most famous is a huge granite called "Turtle Stone ". It is said to be about 3.6 meters long and weigh about 40 tons, and has an adorable expression as if it is smiling at you.
According to one theory, this turtle stone originally faced the direction of north, and it is said that if it faced west, the Nara basin would be flooded. Now it faces southwest, and we hope that it will not face west any more.
There are various other stones in Asuka Village, such as the monkey stone, the devil's chopping board, and the devil's snow cover. Please check them out when you visit the village.

"Facility Information "
Address: 〒634-0141 108 Kawahara, Akane Village, Takashi-gun, Nara


Okadera Temple is located in Asuka Village and is a temple of the Toyozan School of Shingon Buddhism. Its official name is "Ryugaiji Temple ( ").
The founder, Gien Shojo, built the temple in Okamiya, the palace of Prince Kusakabe, and it came to be called Oka-dera, a familiar name for a temple in Asuka's Oka.
Okadera Temple is known as Japan's first sacred site for exorcism, but recently it has also become famous for its flowers. In spring, the grounds are filled with approximately 3,000 rhododendrons, buttons, azaleas, and other brightly colored flowers.
The temple offers seasonal views throughout the year, but Golden Week is the best time to visit.
During this period, dahlia flowers are floated in ponds and pots on the temple grounds, making for an even more beautiful sight than usual.

"Facility Information "
Address: 〒634-0111 806, Akira-ka-mura, Koichi-gun
Phone number: 0744-54-2007
Admission: March to November...8:30 to 17:00 / December to February...8:30 to 16:30
Irisan material: general...400yen, college students...300yen, junior high school students...200yen
Closed: None

tachibana temple

Tachibana-ji Temple is a Tendai sect temple that is said to be the birthplace of Prince Shotoku.
The date of its founding is not clear, but according to temple legend, Tachibana-dera began when Prince Shotoku converted his grandfather Emperor Kinmei's annex "Tachibana no miya "into a temple.
There are many attractions in the precincts of the temple, including a statue of Prince Shotoku enshrined in the main hall, a two-faced stone that is one of the mysterious stone structures, and the heart foundation of the ruins of a five-story pagoda.
Of particular note are the ceiling paintings in the Oujo-in Temple. The 260 floral ceiling paintings, created in competition with contemporary artists, are so beautiful that you will want to look at them for a long time.
You can take pictures or just roll around on the floor and enjoy the view, or lie down and take a picture of the entire ceiling painting as a souvenir.

"Facility Information "
Address: 〒634-0142 532 Orange, Akira-ka-mura, Koichi-gun
Phone number: 0744-54-2026
Entrance time:9:00~17:00
Entrance fees: Adults - 400 yen, junior high and high school students - 300 yen, elementary school students - 200 yen
Closed: None

Asuka Temple

Asukadera Temple is the oldest full-scale temple in Japan, built in 594 at the initiative of Soga Umako.
The Asuka Daibutsu (Shakyamuni Buddha), the principal image of the temple, is also the oldest Buddhist statue in Japan, and is said to have been created in 609 by the Buddhist monk Toributsuji.
Although most of the original parts of the statue have been repaired due to two major fires in the Heian and Kamakura periods, the long face, almond-shaped eyes, and archaic smile still show the age of the Buddha statue in many places.
The scale of the temple is smaller than it was at the time of its construction due to the loss of the original temple due to fire, but the oldest temple and Buddhist statues in Japan are well worth seeing. However, the oldest temple and Buddhist statues in Japan are worth seeing. This is a must-see spot when touring temples in Asuka.

"Facility Information "
Address: 〒634-0103 Hidetori 682, Asuka Village, Koichi-gun
Phone number: 0744-54-2126
Viewing hours: April 1 to September 30...9:00 to 17:30 / October 1 to March 31 : 9:00 to 17:00
Admission: Adults - 350 yen, Junior and senior high school students - 250 yen, Elementary school students - 200 yen
Closed: April 7 - April 9

Hase Temple

Hase-ji Temple is the head temple of the Toyozan School of Shingon Buddhism and is a large temple with about 3,000 branch temples throughout Japan.
It is also called "the temple of flowers "because of the variety of flowers that bloom throughout the four seasons, including cherry blossoms, buttons, and hydrangeas.
Hase Temple is also famous as a temple that appears in many Heian-period works, including Sei Shonagon's The Pillow Book, Murasaki Shikibu's The Tale of Genji, and Sugawara Koshojo's Sarashina Nikki.
The Hase Kannon (standing image of eleven-faced Avalokitesvara Bodhisattva), which appears in the Warashibe no Chosa of Konjaku Monogatari, is one of the largest Kannon statues in Japan, standing over 10 meters tall, and is designated as an important cultural property.
Normally, visitors can only see the Kannon from the worship hall, but during the special viewing periods from spring through fall, visitors can enter the main hall and directly touch the feet of the Kannon.

"Facility Information "
Address: 〒633-0112 Sakurai City, Hatsuse 731-1
Phone number: 0744-47-7001
Entry hours: April-September ... 8:30-17:00 / October-November and March ... 9:00-17:00 / December-February ... 9:00-16:30
*Hours may be extended during the Peony Festival, etc.
Entrance fees: Adults - 500 yen, junior high and high school students - 500 yen, elementary school students - 250 yen
Closed: None

Kashiwara City Insect Museum

The Kashihara Insect Museum is a hands-on nature museum for children and adults alike, located in Kashihara City's Kakayama Park.
"The theme of the Insectarium is "See, hear, touch, and feel. "" The museum is filled with exhibits that allow visitors to learn about insect ecology while having fun!
In addition to various insect specimens and fossils, there is a model of a praying mantis whose arms move by operating a steering wheel, and a corner where visitors can experience the scenery as insects see it, attracting many people on weekends.
Although there is a section where visitors can actually see live insects, most of the exhibits are basically models, so even those who are not fond of insects can enjoy the tour with relative peace of mind.
This spot is especially recommended for those who plan to visit Nara with children.

"Facility Information "
Address: 624 Minamiyama-cho, Kashihara-shi, Nara-ken, 634-0024
Phone number: 0744-24-7246
School hours: Before lunch...9:30-12:30 / After lunch...13:30-16;30
Fees: Adults - 520 yen, college and high school students - 410 yen, junior high school students and younger - 100 yen
*Free for children under 3 years old
Closed: Please check the official website

hut where one spends the night to avoid travelling in an unlucky direction

Mendoya is a long-established restaurant that has been in business for more than 100 years, and is popular for its Nara's local cuisine such as kakinoha zushi, nyumen, and warabimochi.
The Asuka nabe, the signature dish, is a must-try here. The history of Asuka-nabe is very old, and it is said to have started when milk was introduced from Tang China during the Asuka period (710-794), and people gradually began to eat meat from chickens boiled in milk.
Once you taste Mendoya's special soup, which is a blend of several soup stocks based on milk, you will surely be captivated by it. It is especially recommended during the cold season as it warms you up.
The store is located right between Okadera Temple and Tachibana Temple, so it is a great place to stop by in between sightseeing in Asuka.

"Facility Information "
Address: 〒634-0111 40, Akira-ka Village, Koichi-gun
Phone number: 0744-54-2055
Hours of operation: 11:00~.
*Will end as soon as sold out.
Closed: None

suspension bridge at the end of a valley stream

The Tanise Suspension Bridge is Japan's longest steel suspension bridge over Totsukawa Village.
Although it is now one of the tourist attractions in Totsukawa Village, it was originally built as a suspension bridge for daily use by the local people.
The bridge is 297 meters long. On a clear day, visitors can enjoy a 10-15 minute walk in the air while viewing the towering mountains and the Totsukawa River below.
However, be careful if you are afraid of heights, as the bridge swayed as you walked across it. If you are not comfortable with this, we recommend that you do not force yourself to cross the bridge, but rather enjoy the view from the observation platform near the entrance of the bridge.
It is a rule of thumb to wear shoes that are easy to walk in bad weather, as the footing can be slippery! Don't forget to take precautions against dropping your smartphone or camera.

"Facility information "*Totsukawa Tourist Association
Address: 65-2, Uenochi, Totsukawa-mura, Yoshino-gun, 637-1106
Phone number: 0746-63-0200
Business hours:8:30~17:15

Yoshino Road Area

The Yoshino area is full of spectacular spots where you can enjoy nature to the fullest. In the last section, we will introduce four recommended spots in the Yoshino Road area.

The face does not move clock breast cave

Menfudo Cave is one of the most famous limestone caves in the Kansai region, located in Tenkawa Village, and was discovered in 1933 and excavated over the next five years.
The cave is 280 meters long. Inside are rare straw-shaped stalactites, coral reefs, and stalactites that look like rainfall, allowing visitors to fully enjoy the art of nature. The beautifully illuminated interior of the cave is so mysterious that visitors will lose track of time.
The average temperature inside the cave is 8 degrees Celsius, so it is recommended to bring a cloak when visiting in the summer.
There is also the Godaimatsu Cave about 5 minutes away by car, so if you have time, please visit both caves.

"Facility Information "
Address: 〒638-0431 673-89 Dongcheon, Tencheon Village, Yoshino-gun
Phone number: 0747-64-0352
Opening hours:Summer...8:00~18:00/Winter...9:00~17:00
Material money:Adults...450yen, small people...200yen
*Free for children under 3 years old
Closed: Year-end and New Year holidays

Kunisu no Sato

Kunisu-no-sato is a village with such a long history that it is mentioned in the Kojiki and Nihonshoki, and manufacturing utilizing the nature that has remained since ancient times is thriving.
The village has a variety of workshops, including specialty Yoshino handmade washi paper, chopstick making, pottery, and glass crafts, where visitors can enjoy authentic craftsmanship under the guidance of veteran staff.
Some of the menus are open to children as young as elementary school age, so we recommend that families visiting with their children try their hand at making something to commemorate the trip.
Kunisu also has a monument to Tanizaki Junichiro's novel "Yoshinoguzu "and Jomihara Shrine, which enshrines Emperor Temmu, as well as other tourist spots where you can enjoy a relaxing stroll through nature.

"Facility information "*Kunisu no Sato General Center
Address: 281 Araiko, Yoshino-cho, Yoshino-gun, 639-3433
Phone number: 0746-36-6403

Yoshino Mountain

Yoshinoyama is located in Yoshino Town, Nara Prefecture, and is one of the three most famous cherry blossom viewing spots in Japan, along with Hirosaki Park in Aomori Prefecture and Takato Joshi Park in Nagano Prefecture.
Over its long history, a variety of cherry trees have been planted, and today there are 30,000 cherry trees of 200 varieties, mainly white yamazakura, growing in clusters.
Yoshinoyama is divided into lower, middle, upper, and back senbon, and each area offers a different view of the mountain.
There are several spots with spectacular views, but we especially recommend the Hanayagura Observatory.
This is said to be the most spectacular spot on Yoshinoyama, with a panoramic view of the Kamisenbon and Naka-senbon.
Since the area is crowded with many people during the peak viewing season, visitors are advised to check the blooming information of Kami-Senbon and Naka-Senbon carefully.

"Facility information "*Yoshinoyama Tourist Association
Address: 2430 Yoshinoyama, Yoshino-cho, Yoshino-gun, 639-3115
Phone number: 0746-32-1007
Hours of operation: 10:00-16:00
Closed: Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday
*Open every day in March (except Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays), and open until the third week of April.


Nara, which was introduced in the Kojiki (Records of Ancient Matters) and Nihonshoki (Chronicles of Japan) and once flourished as the capital of Japan, still retains traces of those days here and there. Nara is full of historical buildings as well as spots where you can enjoy nature, and is highly recommended for those who want to get away from the hustle and bustle of daily life and refresh themselves. If you are planning to visit Nara, please take a look at the information in this article.

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