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Domo arigato.
  • Narai Station In The Nagano Prefecture

  • Narai Station In The Nagano Prefecture

  • Kiso Ohashi / Bridge Over The Narai River

  • Old Post Town Narai In The Kiso Valley

  • Old Post Town Narai In The Kiso Valley

  • Old Post Town Narai In The Kiso Valley

  • Narai Old Post Town In The Kiso Valley

  • Narai Old Post Town In The Kiso Valley

  • Kamidonya Shiryokan In Narai Kiso Valley

  • Narai Old Post Town In The Kiso Valley

  • Narai Old Post Town In The Kiso Valley

  • Narai Old Post Town In The Kiso Valley

  • Narai Hachiman Shrine In The Kiso Valley

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Facts & Figures

Narai, an old post town along the Nakasendo Route, is the perfect example of traditional Japanese architecture during the Edo period. It belongs to one of Japan's protected areas for the preservation of traditional buildings. The town is the heart of the Kiso lacquer-making industry. A hiking tour connecting the old post towns Narai, Tsumago and Magome is my must-see recommendation for you on your Japan trip.

History

Narai was the 34th station out of 69 stations along the Nakasendo Route. This route with a length of app. 534 km connected Kyoto with Edo (Tokyo city) during the period when the Tokugawa shoguns ruled Japan (1603-1867). Narai, during this time the most successful and wealthiest town along the route, was also called "Narai of a Thousand Houses".

Location Show map

Narai belongs to the city Shiojiri and is located within the Nagano Prefecture.

How to get to Narai?

  • 2,5hrs from Tokyo Shinjuku Station to Shiojiri Station by JR Azusa Line and
  • 20min from Shiojiri Station to Narai Station by JR Chuohonsen Line
  • 100min from Tokyo to Nagoya by JR Tokaido Shinkansen and
  • 85min from Nagoya to Kisofukushima Station by JR Shinano (Limited Express) and
  • 30min from Kisofukushima Station to Narai Station by local train

Sightseeing spots

Top:

Kiso-no-Ohashi (Kiso’s Big Bridge) - the bridge is about 300 years old and made of Japanese cypress

Torii Pass - 3hrs hiking course between Narai Station and Yabuhara Station

Nakamura House - well preserved historic house from 1840

Shizume Jinja Shrine - shrine area with a great Edo atmosphere

200 Juzos (stone Buddhist statues) - located at the northern end of Narai, every statue is unique

Festival & Events (dates can change without notice)

June

Narai-juku Festival (5th till 7th)
The festival is celebrating the processions of tea also known as ocha-tsubo-dou-chuu during the Edo period.

Kiso Lacquer Craft Festival (5th till 7th)
Shop till you drop and enjoy the stylish lacquer craft.