Castle town with traditional dancing, spring-fed canals, and one very unique industry!
Located in the center of Gifu Prefecture, Gujo Hachiman is a historic castle town dating back to the 16th century.
In summer, people from all over Japan and abroad come together to enjoy Gujo-odori, a local dance festival that continues for 32 nights. The festival culminates in four days of what is termed “All-Night Dancing.” During this period participants dance the whole night through from 8:00pm to 4:00am the next morning.
Spring-fed canals run the length and breadth of Gujo Hachiman. The pure water is very important to everyday life and is still used to clean vegetables and wash clothes. Sogisui Spring gushes forth at the foot of Shimizu Bridge, which spans the Odara River near the center of town. This was the first spring to have been designated as one of Japan’s top 100 springs.
Gujo Hachiman is the production center for the plastic foods often seen in restaurant display cases across Japan. Here, visitors can try their hand at making waxen display foods of their own. This quirky and fun hands-on attraction appeals to children and adults alike and is quickly gaining popularity as a must-do for visitors to Central Japan.
Other attractions include Otaki Caverns, located to the south. Inside the cavern is a 30-meter waterfall, which is said to be the largest underground waterfall in Japan. Visitors shouldn’t miss a chance to see the rare stalactites that turn red and pink.
The Okumino area is a snow resort paradise and is located a mere 2 hours by coach from Chubu International Airport. With 12 snow and ski resorts clustered together, the options are virtually limitless.
From Tokyo :
[Rail] 2h to Nagoya Station by JR Tokaido Shinkansen and 40 min from Nagoya to Mino Ota Station by JR Takayama Line. 1h 20 min from Mino Ota to Gujo Hachiman Station by Nagaragawa Line. Or, 1h 30-45 min from Nagoya by Meitetsu Bus, JR Tokai Bus, Nohi Bus, or Gifu Bus.
From Osaka :
[Rail] 1h from Shin-Osaka to Nagoya Station by Shinkansen Line.