Located in the middle of Nagano Prefecture, a landlocked prefecture in central Honshu, Narai-juku was one of the points along the Nakasendo, the ancient road connecting Kyoto to Edo. Narai-juku flourished as a district of inns and other businesses catering to the travelers walking between the ancient capitals. It has been designated a national preservation district of historical buildings, keeping it an authentic memorial of Japan’s Edo Period.
Setting foot into the area, one cannot help but imagine that she has time travelled to an earlier period. The tree covered mountains surrounding the town provide bountiful evidence that the many wooden products that proliferate - combs and lacquerware abound - would have delighted the travelers of an earlier period. They continue to make wonderful souvenirs and gifts.
From JR Shinjuku Station, take the Chuo Line Express to Matsumoto 2 hours and 30 minutes to Shiojiri Station. At Shiojiri Station, transfer to the Chuo Main Line going towards Nagatsugawa. Ride for 20 minutes to Narai Station. 2-minute walk to destination.
Address: Narai, Shiojiri-shi, Nagano Prefecture
Airport: Matsumoto Airport
Contemporary walk through a 400-year old samurai district
The natural water curtain heals the body and soul
Taste the natural wonder of Yakushima Island
Majestic Mt. Fuji, viewed from the shores of a quiet, idyllic lake
Golden national treasure recognized as world cultural heritage
Gorgeous Sakura tree, guardian of a hillside tea plantation
Pristine white sand beach paradise and warm welcome breeze
Timeless Okinawan island landscape - framed by a row of Bise trees
Autumn in Japan, landscape dyed in red, orange, and brown