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Saturday, March 05, 2011

Gassho Zukuri Minka-en Shirakawa-go

合掌造り民家園

The Gassho Zukuri Minka-en or Gassho-zukuri Folklore Park is a collection of historic gassho (praying hands) buildings from the Shirakawa-go area in Gifu and Toyama prefectures. This conservation area preserves over 25 thatched buildings in traditional style within lovely natural surroundings.

The Ogimachi district where the park is located was awarded UNESCO World Heritage status in 1995.


Set up in the late 1960s following a mass exodus of villagers to the cities, the Gassho-zukuri Folklore Park contains family residences, a shrine, a stable, storage sheds, mills, a fire watchtower, traditional gates, barns, a temple and other buildings. A description in both Japanese and and English explains the background to each building, many of which can be entered (You may need to remove your shoes). Local handicrafts, tools, photographs and stuffed animals are on display.

Gassho Zukuri Minka-en Shirakawa-go
Gassho Zukuri Minka-en
2499 Oaza Ogimachi
Shirakawa-mura Ohno-gun
Gifu
501-5627
Tel: 05769 6 1231
Admission: 500 yen
Hours: April-November daily 8.40am-5pm April-July; Septembe-November; 8.30am-5.30pm August; 9am-4pm December-March

There are buses from Nagoya to Shirakawa-go leaving from the Meitetsu Bus Center at 9am on weekends and departing from Shirakawa-go at 3.35pm for Nagoya. Journey time is 3 hours to 3 hours 40 minutes depending on traffic. The nearest exit on the Tokai Hokuriku Expressway is Shirakawa-go I.C.


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Gassho Zukuri Minka-en Shirakawa-go
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