Travel, Travel Journal

SR18: Hida Furukawa

こんにちは、みんなさん!

I hope you guys are having a wonderful start to your weekend.

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K and I under the Pink Dogwood Tree(Hanamizuki).

Before the month of May ended, I posted my blog about Shirakawago. This blog is a continuation of our Golden week road trip with K.

Now from Shirakawago, we had to drive along the Tokai-Hokuriku expressway thru the Hida Tunnel which is 10,712 kilometers long! We had no idea that K had to drive back and forth thru the second longest tunnel in Japan. (My information may not be updated but still a very long boring tunnel)

He confessed to me that the tunnel lulls him to sleep no matter how much he felt well rested.

As soon as we passed it, we took a break on the side of the road. So beware!

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After taking a break we were soon on our way to Hida Furukawa which is the neighboring town of Takayama, still in Gifu prefecture.

Mind you, this was the Golden week in Japan. A week-long holiday for everybody so it looked to me like a deserted town.

If it wasn’t  high noon I’d be scared.

Luckily, some businesses are still open so we were able to eat our lunch there. It wasn’t anything special since we were saving our money and appetite for the Hida Beef Dinner.

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The Takumikan Craft Museum, where you can learn and get a feel of the woodwork techniques. (In front of the Takumikan is an old Bonzai tree. It looks like it’s ripping itself apart!)

Hida Furukawa owe it’s renowned landscape and architecture to their skillful carpenters called “Hida no Takumi”

It’s funny that translates to Lefthand craftsmen, Google could be wrong but they’re also known as Hida’s Master builders.

Apart from architecture, this place is also known for their Hadaka Matsuri every April just after the Sanno Matsuri in Takayama.  They have floats with similar designs as well.

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This place is also famous for Marriage/love visits. In the month of January, people make a three-temple pilgrimage in this Old Town. It’s namely, Enko-ji, Shinshu-ji and Honkou-ji. At night they have an event called “Thousand Candles” where people pray for love.

Speaking of “love” I saw a lot of posters of the animated movie called “Kimi no Na Wa”.

It turns out Hida Furukawa is one of the famous landmarks used as a background scene in the animation.

Another eye-catcher, at first I thought it’s an oddly looking sakura tree but it turns out to be pink dogwood trees. I’ve read online that the Dogwood tree was a gift from the US and the lone survivor out of the original saplings was in Setagaya, Tokyo.

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In Japan, they call it ‘Hanamizuki’ and they are usually planted on the roadside. Come to think of it I have been seeing these trees along the streets of our town. However, they’re commonly color white in our area and not this pink.

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All in all, I find Hida Furukawa quite serene. And to know which one I prefer between the Old Town of Hida Furukawa or the Old Town of Takayama, you better subscribe and watch out for my next blog!

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Before you leave, please watch my video blog below at Hida Furukawa and hope you like it!

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