Welcome to our little Shirakawago Tour. Shirakawago is a region around 75 km away from Kanazawa. The most famous village of Shirakawago is Ogimachi. When walking through the streets here, you could even think that somehow you ended up in Scandinavia instead or traveled back in time.
What to find out in this post
- Declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1995
- Full of Gassho-Zukuri Farmhouses
- Gassho-Zukuri can be translated to Constructed like hands in prayer which leads back to the shape of the roofs that should remind of Buddhist monks’ hands
- This shape helps to withstand the snow in winter
- Some of the houses are more than 250 years old
How to get to Shirakawago
Duration: ca. 1 hour
Price: From Takayama Single Trip: 1850 Yen/ ca.14€ /$17 /Round Trip: 4420 Yen/ ca. 33,36€/ $40,83 //From Kanazawa Single Trip: 2470 Yen/ 18,68€/ $22,82/ Round Trip: 3290 Yen/ 24,83€/ $30,39
The easiest way to get to Shirakawago is to take the bus that runs between Takayama and Toyama via Kanazawa.
For more information check the schedule on this website.
The best travel time for Shirakawago
Shirakawago is a nice thing to see in every season.
They say that the region and the farmhouses are most beautiful when covered in snow. Drawback: The way to the viewpoint is often closed due to the snow.
It is beautiful to walk around here in the nice summer sun. Drawback: Might be a little bit hot in summer. Many tourists.
At this time, there are probably way fewer tourists walking around. Drawback: Often, the weather is not that good in Low-Season.
Where to stay in Shirakawago
Shirakawago is perfect for a day-trip. But many people say that the true highlight is to stay overnight to fully enjoy the tranquility and peacefulness of this place.
Just click on the name of the accommodation to get more information about it.
Guest House AntHut – Bed in Mixed Dorm
Shirakawago Guest House Kei – Bed in Mixed Dorm
Guesthouse Taroemo – Mixed Futon Dorm
Fujiya – Private room with Futon beds
Shirakawago Terrace – Private Room with River View
Toyota Shirakawa-go Eco Institute – Private room with 4 single beds, breakfast, 4 Stars
What to see in Ogimachi
Ogimachi is the biggest and therefore main village of Shirakawago. Basically, there is no main attraction in Ogimachi. Just walking around, getting lost in the surrounding green fields and walking between the famous Gassho-Zukuri houses makes for the perfect day trip.
The Shiroyama Viewpoint
The Shiroyama Viewpoint is located a little bit North of the village. You can get there on a little walking trail. It might take you around 15-20 Minutes.
I can just highly recommend everyone to walk up to the observatory. It is totally worth it as you have an amazing view over the village. Even if the weather sucks 🙂
Personal experience in Ogimachi
During our trip to Shirakawago, we didn’t get quite lucky with the weather actually. We had to walk through the pouring rain which was mixed with strong winds. Lovely! In between, there were some moments in which the sun showed up, so we could warm up a little.
Anyway, we loved the village and all of its cute little houses. The whole atmosphere that this place provides is just mesmerizing. And if the weather hasn’t been that awful I could have definitely spent hours walking around.
Unfortunately, there were no locals walking around that you could start a conversation with. The only people you met were other tourists – a lot of them. Even though it wasn’t extremely crowded it can spoil a little bit the peacefulness of the place seeing a loud tourist group walking by taking selfies at every corner.
However, when the rain became heavier, most tourists started looking for shelter which gave us space to explore Ogimachi without selfie sticks around us all the time.
Have you been to Ogimachi or Shirakawago? What was your impression? Let me know in the comments!