Definitions

Takayama

Takayama

Takayama, city (1990 pop. 65,243), Gifu prefecture, W central Honshu, Japan, on the Jinzu River. A former castle town from the Edo era, it is now an agricultural market and handicrafts center.
is a city located in Gifu, Japan. As of May 1, 2007 the city has an estimated population of 95,778. The total area is .

The city is fairly old, dating back to the Jōmon period. Takayama is best known for its background in carpentry. It is believed carpenters from Takayama worked on the Imperial Palace in Kyoto and on many of the temples in Kyoto and Nara. The town and its culture, as they exist today, took shape at the end of the 16th century, when the Kanamori clan built Takayama Castle. About a hundred years later the city came under the rule of the Tokugawa shogunate. However, the high altitude and separation from other areas of Japan kept the area fairly isolated, allowing Takayama to develop its own culture over about a 300-year period.

Significance

On February 1, 2005 nine towns and villages from Ono District and the former Yoshiki District merged in a major expansion of the city. This major expansion made Takayama the largest city in Japan (by surface area). The city is also known as Hida-Takayama (飛騨高山) to differentiate it from other Takayamas. The guide books also call it by that name. The name 'Takayama' means 'tall mountain'.

Geography

Adjoining communities

Sister Cities

Within Japan

Overseas

Attractions

  • Mount Norikura, a dormant volcano that is 3,026 meters (9,928 ft.) tall is located just east of Takayama. A bus runs up to a point near the summit.
  • Shin-Hotaka Ropeway and Okuhida Spa Resort. There is a 3,200 meter ropeway offering great views of the Northern Alps.
  • Old Private Houses. There are a variety of old homes in the heart of Takayama that are neat cultural artifacts.
  • Takayama has a nice morning market near the river in the center of town.
  • The Hida Minzoku Mura Folk Village folk village is also nearby.
  • Takayama is the home of a famous Shinto festival (Takayama Matsuri) and the floats used during the festival can be found in the Takayama Yatai Kaikan (Takayama Festival Float Exhibition Hall). Nearby is the Sakurayama Nikkō Kan, an exhibit of 1/10th scale replicas of Nikkō's famous Toshogu shrine.
  • Takayama-shi Kyodo-kan is a local history museum with handicrafts and traditional items.
  • Takayama Jinya is a historical government house that has been restored to its earlier design and is open for tours.
  • Kusakabe Folk Museum is a local museum in an old merchant's home.
  • Hida-Kokubunji Temple is the oldest structure in Takayama. It has a 3-level pagoda and stands beside a ginkgo tree that is over 1,200 years old.
  • Ankokuji Temple and Storehouse is an ancient structure from 1408 that is recognized as a national treasure.
  • Hida Takayama Kur Alp (Hida Takayama Spa Land) is a large public bath and swimming area.
  • The ruins of Matsukura Castle are located in the city.

Culture

  • Takayama is known for its local foods, including sansai (mountain vegetables) and wasakana (river fish) as well as its beef, soba, ramen, and sake.
  • In addition to its fame for its carpentry, Takayama is well known for its lacquerware, pottery, and furniture.
  • The mountain city of Takayama is associated with charms known as "sarubobos", which are traditionally passed from grandmothers to grandchildren and mothers to daughters, though are now often sold as souvenirs. The city and the Hida area in which it is located are also known for carpentry, and its carpenters are called Hida no takumi.

Around the east of the city is a walking tour, called the Higashiyama Walking Course (東山歩行道 Higashiyama-hokōdō), which goes past many shrines and temples to Shiroyama Park (城山公園 Shiroyama-kōen). Takayama holds two festivals every year, Sannō Matsuri (山王祭り) in Spring and Hachiman Matsuri (八幡祭り) in Autumn. These festivals are among the most popular in Japan.

The city was founded on November 1, 1936.

External links

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