Kamikochi National Park
Renowned for its natural beauty, Kamikochi National Park is tucked away in a semi-remote valley in Nagano prefecture.
No cars are allowed in the park, making the park difficult to get to, but if you do decide to make the effort, it is well worth your time.
Inside the park, you will discover idyllic winding rivers, majestic towering trees, and elegant structures such as wooden planks suspended over a marsh. It is a place that will be loved by visitors of all ages from young children to the elderly, as there are both well-defined circuits as well as rugged mountain trails for those who are looking for a challenge to transverse.
Without a local train station, the fishing village of Funaya truly is a hidden gem in Japan.
To reach it, you will need to take a train from Kyoto to Miyazu Station, followed by one of the local buses to reach Funaya, which have an irregular schedule.
But this quaint coastal village is well worth the journey. The village’s name actually refers to the traditional fisherman’s houses that are right on the water’s edge for easier access with boats. Some of the fisherman’s houses have now been converted to guest accommodation so they can experience the feeling of sleeping on the sea, but you can still marvel upon these unique houses from the water either by renting boats yourself, or joining a local sightseeing ferry.
Hiding on Japan’s Shikoku Island in Ehime Prefecture, Matsuyama is filled with all kinds of traditional Japanese architecture that you won’t see often. These intricate wooden houses and buildings dates back all the way to the Meiji Period. If you’re an architecture or history buff, you’re in for a treat!
What’s more, the city’s traditional Dōgo Onsen also claims to be Japan’s oldest hot spring with bathhouses and soaking rooms which have inspired the setting of the popular film- Spirited Away. Before you depart, be sure to visit Matsuyama Castle. Uniquely positioned on a large hill in the middle of the city, it boasts jaw-dropping panoramic views of Matsuyama and beyond, which is even more stunning during spring when the “sakura” cherry blossoms are in full bloom.
Did you know it can take up to 15 hours to fly from Canada to Japan?
But fear not, there are plenty of items and gadgets at Oomomo to make your long-haul flight more enjoyable.