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Gifu

Gifu prefecture, known as the unofficial “center” of Japan, was and is very important to Japan in many aspects. For starters, it holds the record for most open air hot springs in one area of Japan, in addition to having famous historical figures like Oda Nobunaga of Sengoku fame, and a UNESCO Heritage site dedicated to preserving Shirakawa’s historic village. Gifu also occupies the land that was originally the home of the Yamato people, arguably Japan’s most famous tribe. It’s also one of Japan’s rarer landlocked prefectures.

Because much of Gifu is surrounded by mountains, including parts of the Japanese alps, the temperature fluctuates throughout the year. While there is no ocean nearby to cool off from the hot summers, cold winters can be made bearable with Gifu’s numerous hot springs, especially those in Gero. Because the Japanese alps are also nearby, Gifu can also serve as a starting point for any snowboarding, skiing, or mountain climbing trips you are planning.

Gifu is also historically famous for being the sword making capital of Japan. In addition to this, it also had the Nakasendo route through it; a road that allowed people to travel from Kyoto to Edo, which made Gifu a strategically valuable piece of land. There was an old saying from the Sengoku (Feudal) Era, which means “Control Gifu and you control Japan”. Goes to show how valuable Gifu truly was.

And let’s not forget about the food! Gifu boasts unique cuisine that makes it feel like you’re eating truly traditional Japanese food. Hoba Miso, or baked miso wrapped in hoba leaves, has an interesting history behind it. Kei-chan chicken is also cooked with a marinade of miso, garlic, and soy sauce, and is guaranteed to go well with rice. Hida beef is also Gifu’s most prized form of meat, and can even go toe-to-toe with Kobe beef in terms of flavor.

More about Gifu

Top spots

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Shirakawa Village

Shirakawa-go is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, famous for its villages with traditional Gassho-zukuri houses. These are large wooden houses built wi...Read more

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Hida Folk Village

Hida Folk Village (also known as Hida no Sato) is an open air museum in the Takayama area of Gifu prefecture. It is filled with preserved tradition...Read more

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Mount Kinka

Mount Kinka, Kinka-zan in Japanese, is a popular spot in Gifu City. A ropeway will take you to the summit where Gifu Castle is located.Read more

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Wide View Hida Train

The Wide View Hida Train is a scenic train journey that takes you from Nagoya to Toyama.Read more

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75 by 0 viewers
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Magome-juku

Magome is an old post town in Gifu prefecture, and is considered part of the Kiso District which stretches across the border into Nagano prefecture.Read more

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90 by 2 viewers
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Gero Onsen Hot Spring

This hot spring town is considered one of the top three in all of Japan, alongside Kusatsu in Gunma prefecture and Arima in Hyogo prefecture. It ha...Read more

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89 by 2 viewers
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Iwamura Castle Remains

Iwamura Castle was the Iwamura Clan's center of power during the Edo period. The castle is also called Kirigajo Castle (Fog Castle) due to the cons...Read more

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86 by 0 viewers
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Gujo Hachiman Castle

This castle was built by warlord Morikazu Endo during the Sengoku period in the year 1559 and is said to be the most beautiful mountain castle in J...Read more

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86 by 3 viewers