August 13, 2016

Obon odori and summer festival in Takayama

Summer is hot and full of festival in Japan !

Do you know "obon" ? It is a Buddhist custom to celebrate the ancestors. "Bon odori" means "bon dance", which is a dance to celebrate the ancestors' spirits. Each city has its own dance and music, but it is always constructed with a pattern which is repeated all along the song, and people usually dance in circles. Let's try to dance with locals !

In Takayama near the J-Hoppers Hida Takayama we will have a lot of opportunities to dance and wear yukata ! You should try to wear it at least once if you come to Japan during summer ! Yukata can be easily rented.

  • Takayama Jinya Obon odori: 14th and 15th of August 2016
    • 3mn from the hostel
  • Takayama Bestuin Obon odori : 16th of August 2016
    • 15mn from the hostel
  • Takayama Ryokan Obon odori : 27th of August 2016
    • 5mn from the hostel

July 31, 2016

Handheld Fireworks

The annual handheld firework display will be held in Takayama on August 9 along Miyakawa River. If you haven't seen this amazing event before, I do recommend that you see if for once. I am sure you will be awed by the sight of fireworks raining down on the body of the brave handheld firework holder and the sound of explosion in the end, after which everything falls silent. I always wonder if it will be pretty painful doing this, and I definitely cannot imagine myself doing this. I will be happy being the spectator, and this year will probably be my third year watching this event. Please join me on August 9 from 7.30pm! 

June 30, 2016

Lavender Festival at Kiyomi

Okay, I know Furano at Hokkaido is famous for lavender, but actually you can find lavender field in Takayama, though in a much smaller scale. But still if you don't have time to venture that far to Hokkaido, you can satisfy your thirst of seeing lavender by riding a bicycle to Kiyomi. The best time to see lavender here is around early July, and for two consecutive weekends, on July 2 and 3, as well as on July 9 and 10, a lavender festival will be held around the lavender garden. Don't miss it! Please ask our staff for access to the lavender garden.

Summer illumination at Nakabashi bridge

What makes summer bearable in Takayama is the temperature difference. As the sun sets, the scorching heat grilling us during day time will gradually disappear, and as you step out to the streets at night, you will be greeted with a comfortable cool breeze. How would you not want to take a walk at night in Takayama? Between July 2 and August 16, the famous Nakabashi bridge (nicknamed red bridge) will be lit up from 7.30 pm and 10 pm to invite locals as well as travelers to take a stroll around the red bridge. 

May 7, 2016

Okuhida Himuro Soba Festival.

Autumn is the best season for making Soba noodle.
In Okuhida, they have special way to make

original soba in the Ice house.

It tastes more sweeter than normal one.

You can choose original topping at the festival.

They sell local products like a fresh veggie!!

17th May (Tue) - 20th May (Fri)
20rd May (Mon) -26th May (Thu)


At Taruma no Yakata

April 30, 2016

Mt. Norikura opening

Mt. Norikura, which has been closed during winter, will be open again for visitors from May 15 this year. The Alpine route in Tateyama is of course famous for its snow wall, but though much lesser known, Mt. Norikura also offers a snow wall experience at the beginning of the season, but at a smaller scale. Given the unusually warm winter that just left us, it is worrying how thick the snow will be this year, but let's hope it will not be too disappointing. But anyway, Mt. Norikura has much more to offer as the season gradually moves towards summer. In July and August, it attracts many hikers aiming for the summit at more than 3000 meters, deemed one of the most easily accessible 3000-meter level mountains. See you on the trail!

To go there, you have to first take a bus from Takayama to Honokidaira through the Shinhotaka line, and then from there another bus will take you to Norikura at 2,700 meters above sea-level.
Please click on the following links for timetables:

See you on the trail!


Anbo wisteria garden

In 2014, the Ando wisteria garden in Furukawa city, which boasts five wisteria trees over 100 years old, was closed temporarily due to heavy snow that winter. But thanks to an unusually warm winter, this year the garden is expected to open its door to visitors coming to admire the wonderfully beautiful purple wisteria flowers.

The blossoms are expected to be at its peak in mid-May, so do not miss the chance to take a walk under this huge natural curtain of purple flowers.

The garden is 15 minutes' walk from Hida Furukawa station.