12 Sightseeing Spots in Chubu! att.JAPAN’s Top Picks All the Best Things to Do in Japan Vol. 3

att.JAPAN’s Top Picks All the Best Things to Do in Japan
→Vol. 1 Hokkaido and Tohoku  
→Vol. 2 Tokyo and Kanto 
→Vol. 3 Chubu
→Vol. 4 Kansai and West Japan
→Vol. 5 Shikoku
→Vol. 6 Kyushu and Okinawa
The multilingual free magazine att.JAPAN launched in the year 2000 and with this edition, proudly marks its 100th issue. Over the past 23 years, through firsthand reporting, we have brought the best of Japan to the world, from classic sightseeing spots to little known hidden gems, from food culture to festivals and performing arts.

att.JAPAN’s editors know every corner of this country, and here have selected 100 experiences they hope every traveler to Japan can try. Have faith in these recommendations as everything here was directly experienced by members of our team at att.JAPAN. You’re sure to uncover a new side to this island nation, and open the door to unforgettable experiences.

Whether you’re a first-time traveler wondering where to start, or a seasoned, well-traveled fan of the country, read on to find the perfect something for you! Find out what our writers found most moving, and one piece of personal advice learned from their experience! Have you been to the same place?
Please post on Facebook or Instagram with the hashtag #attjapan100!



41. Have fine views of Kurobe Gorge from Torokko Train

“Kurobe Gorge Torokko Train” takes about 80 minutes one way to run through Kurobe Gorge, the reportedly deepest V-shaped ravine in Japan. From the window of the train, you can fully appreciate the wilderness of Kurobe Gorge. While the area is surely popular during the autumn foliage season, it is recommended to visit earlier around September when it is a bit quieter. The train is out of service from December to mid-April.

★You will feel like you are on a ride at a theme park!

Fee:Unazuki Sta. – Keyakidaira Sta. round trip 3,960 yen (Adult)

Address 11 Kurobe Kyokokuguchi, Kurobe City, Toyama
Access Unazuki-Onsen Sta. Toyama Chihou Railway) → 5 min walk
Telephone number 0765621011
URL https://www.kurotetu.co.jp/en/

42. Taste delicious fatty kanburi at Toyama Bay

The Himi area in Toyama Prefecture is famous for kanburi winter yellowtail from the Sea of Japan. There are various ways to enjoy kanburi, such as shabushabu and kama-yaki grilled collar, and I recommend “kanburi-don.” With sashimi slices of kanburi arranged in the shape of a flower on rice, this dish is not only delicious but also beautiful. You have to try kanburi-don with really fresh fish at Uoichiba Shokudo in the Himi Fishing Port.

★The fish is not too fatty and has a nice, light taste!

Address 435 Himi-machi Himi City, Toyama (Himi fishing port fish market 2F)
Access JR Himi Sta. → 15 min walk
Telephone number 0766722018
Business hours 6:30-15:00 (weekdays, national holidays), 6:30-15:30 (Sat, Sun)
Regular holiday January 1-3
URL https://www.kitokitohimi.com/site/gourmet/uoichibashokudou.html

43. Get into the white snow world at “Yuki no Otani”

The spring feature of the Tateyama Kurobe Alpine Route, one of the longest mountain sightseeing routes in the world, which goes through the Hida Mountains, is “Yuki no Otani.” It is an enormous wall of snow created after snow plowing, which is as high as 20 meters. You will be surprised by the white snow world that you come across right after the fresh green at the bottom of the mountain! You can get there by cable car and bus, so you won’t have to worry even if you don’t have stamina to walk up there.

Access Dentetsu-Toyama Sta. → 60 min by train → Tateyama Sta. / JR Shinano Omachi Sta. → 40 min by bus → Ogizawa
URL https://www.alpen-route.com/en/

44. Take photos in front of Buddha statues all along a wall

Taishizan Seidaiji Temple in Katsuyama City is a magnificent temple with a statue of the Great Buddha of 17 meters in seated height, which is taller than the one in Todaiji Temple, Nara Prefecture. Surrounding this Great Buddha statue, more than 1,200 statues of Buddha are arrayed all along a wall, which are supposed to invite people to the Pure Land of Ultimate Bliss, creating an overwhelming view. Visiting in early morning is recommended as there are fewer visitors.

Fee: Adult 500 yen

Address 1-1 Katase 50, Katsuyama City, Fukui
Access Katsuyama Sta. Echizen Railway → 20 min by community bus
Telephone number 0779873300
Business hours 8:00-17:00 (varies during winter season)
Regular holiday Open 365 days (May have temporary closure during winter season)
URL http://etizendaibutsu.com/

45. Amaze karakuri mechanism at Ninja-dera Temple in Kanazawa

Kanazawa is called “little Kyoto.” Just minutes away from the traditional streetscapes, you can find Myoryuji Temple, which is also called Ninja-dera Temple. The temple once served as a fort, so it has various types of mechanisms to protect from enemies from outside, such as hidden doors and hidden stairs. A tour guide will lead you through the maze-like inside (reservation required in advance).

Fee: Adult 1,200 yen (cash only)
* For safety reasons, only those in age from elementary school children and above can join the temple tour.
Please show the IDs such as passports for elementary school children.

Address 1-2-12 Nomachi, Kanazawa City, Ishikawa
Access JR Kanazawa Sta. → 15 min by taxi
Telephone number 0762410888
Business hours 9:00-16:00
Regular holiday Please contact by telephone
URL http://www.myouryuji.or.jp/en.html

46. Walk around the warm friendly town of Hida Takayama

Takayama City still has old-style streets, with various types of shops, including long-established liquor shops, miso shops, ramen shops, and restaurants serving Hida Beef. The Miyagawa Morning Market is held every day. In the town, you can hear lively voices of local people throughout the day, which makes you want to stay there indefinitely. Such a feature is said to stem from the culture of the area to welcome visitors from far away, as it is located deep in the mountains.

Access JR Nagoya Sta. → 2 hr 20 min by limited express → Takayama Sta

47. Dance through the night at Gujo Hachiman

Gujo City, which prospered as the castle town of Gujo Hachiman Castle, is famous for “Gujo Odori” dance festival, which has been held for more than 400 years. The festival lasts over 30 nights from mid-July to mid-September. During the festival period, the most exciting event is called “tetsuya odori,” which literally means “dance through the night,” where people dance through the night until the next morning for four days from August 13 to 16. Tourists can freely join the dance if they want.

Address Around Hachiman-cho, Gujo City, Gifu
Access Gujo-Hachiman Nagaragawa Railway → 20 min walk
URL http://www.gujohachiman.com

48. Travel on a classic steam locomotive of Oigawa Railway

Running through the middle area of Shizuoka Prefecture, Oigawa Railway features actively-working old passenger cars and trains, including steam locomotives from the 1930s to 1940s. Through a window of the train with an interior that makes you feel like you have travelled back in time, you can enjoy a view of houses along the river, lush green mountains, and tea fields, which is really unique to Japan, in a relaxing atmosphere.

* Due to damages brought about by a typhoon in 2022, the train route is currently shortened.

★The whistles and smoke of the steam locomotive make a powerful impression! On a train with a warm wooden interior, I felt like I was a main character of an old novel or movie, on a journey.

Fee: From 1,690 yen (varies on the section)

Access JR Kanaya Sta. → Transfer to Oigawa Railway →Shin-Kanaya Sta Oigawa Railway
Telephone number 547454110
URL https://daitetsu.jp/en/

49. Stray into back alleys in Atami

In Atami, one of the most popular onsen areas in eastern Japan, many people walk towards the ocean while eating something and strolling through the bustling shopping street in front of the station. You should, however, try wandering off onto one of the small side streets. In contrast with the bustle of the station area, you will find yourself in one of the small alleys, which are so labyrinthian that only the local people use them. Enjoy the quiet retro atmosphere of the port town area.

Access JR Atami Sta. → 5 min walk
URL https://travel.ataminews.gr.jp/en/

50. Relish every bite of hitsumabushi in Nagoya

Hitsumabushi is Nagoya’s signature eel dish. The dish is served with small grilled pieces of eel topped on rice and you put some of it into a small bowl and eat it in three rounds. It is said that the first portion should be enjoyed as it is, the second should be with some condiments, such as chopped negi leek and wasabi, and the third should be savored with dashi soup as unachazuke. However, you can enjoy it as you like!

★I don’t eat it with soup because I want to enjoy the crispy texture of grilled unagi to the end!

51. Watch a huge hand-held fireworks display at Toyohashi Gion Festival

A view of tezutsu (hand-held) fireworks of the Higashi-Mikawa area of Aichi Prefecture is just spectacular! Men of the festival hold fireworks paraphernalia including launching tubes under their arms, set off fireworks, and let the sparks rain down all over them, creating an imposing fireworks festival. Toyohashi City is said to be the birthplace of this fireworks, and hosts an annual “Toyohashi Gion Matsuri” festival in July, where about 350 tubes of tezutsu fireworks are launched.

★The fireworks make loud blasts in the finale! It is so loud, so if you are not OK with loud noises, you may need ear plugs.

Address Yoshida Shrine: 2 Sekiya-cho, Toyohashi City, Aichi
Access Yoshida Shrine: Toyohashi Sta. JRMeitetsu→ tram → Shiyakusho-mae stop → 8 min walk
Business hours Held 3 days from 3rd Friday of July every year
URL https://www.toyohashigion.org/

52. Stroll in the historic town in Shikemichi

Located 15 minutes on foot from Nagoya Station, Shikemichi is a highly recommended area for strolling. The area was originally established as a merchant town around Nagoya Castle; therefore, you can still see remnants of the historical townscape. The area has stylish cafes in renovated old folk houses and less-known good restaurants, too, so you will be able to find your favorite place easily!

Address Nagono, Nishi-ku, Nagoya City, Aichi
Access Nagoya Sta. JRSubway, Kintetsu, Meitetsu, Aonami Line→ 15 min walk

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The information herein is as of September 2023

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