Gokayama and Shirakawago

Toyama Things to See

Toyama, Japan Jul. 23 Tues 2:43AM

22.9 / 73.3

A Scenic and Traditional Village

Gokayama and neighboring village, Shirakawago, are villages in the remote mountains in Toyama and Gifu Prefecture. These villages are a UNESCO World Heritage site. 

The farmhouses in the village are hundreds of years old, and are built in a style called "gassho-zukuri," which alludes to construction similar to hands in prayer. The farmhouses have steeped, thatched roofs that echo this style. The area is known for heavy snowfalls, and the roofs, which are made without nails, are steep so that the snow does not accumulate. The structure of the roofs make spaces for attics in the farmhouses. 

The best way to experience the gassho-zukuri villages are to stay overnight at one of the family owned pensions, called "minshuku" in Japanese. 

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