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Winter 2019 Newsletter Release

December 9 , 2019
Winter has arrived to Gifu in full force: cold temperatures, the appearance of ridiculously large scarves that almost cover one’s entire face, and the majority of vending machine drinks switching from cold to hot varieties.
While winter in Gifu is cold, there are plenty of events, beautiful places to see, and steaming-hot food to keep you distracted until spring! Please check our seasonal newsletter for some of this winter’s events that you won’t want to miss.
Not everything is featured so make sure to keep checking our website and Facebook for up to date information.
Winter 2019 Newsletter Release

Gero Hot Springs Winter Firework Performances

December 6 , 2019
☆☆☆ Gero Hot Springs Winter Firework Musicals ☆☆☆
Watch world-class pyrotechnicians launch fireworks in time with accompanying music during these dazzling winter spectacles. 7,000 to 11,000 fireworks are launched during the course of a normal 15-minute show.

※Date: 12/7, 12/14, 12/21 (and a special Christmas Performance on the 24th)
※Time: 20:00~20:15 (Christmas Performance 20:00~20:30)
※Location: Shirasagi Ryokuchi Park (along the banks of the Hida River upstream of the Gero Ohashi Bridge)
※Directions: 5-minute walk from Gero Station

☆☆☆ Gero Hot Springs Winter Firework Stories ☆☆☆
Enjoy firework performances based on seasonal Japanese holidays and societal traditions.
-January: New Year’s and Coming of Age Ceremony
-February: Valentines and Prayers for Students in Passing Exams
-March: Japanese Doll Festival (Girls’ Day), White Day, and Wishing Good Luck in Setting Out on a New Journey
※Date: Every Saturday from January 11 to March 28
※Time: 20:30~20:40
※Location: Along the banks of the Hida River downstream of the Gero Ohashi Bridge
※Directions: 5-minute walk from Gero Station
Gero Hot Springs Winter Firework Performances

New TAKASU MOUNTAINS Multi-Resort Lift Pass and Shuttle Bus System

November 21 , 2019
It’s time to head to the TAKASU MOUNTAINS in Gujo where six ski resorts have banded together in order to provide a quality, convenient snow experience!
In addition to skiing and snowboarding, take part in a large selection of snow activities like sledding, tubing, snow-rafting, snowmobiling, and even snowshoing!

☆☆☆☆ Multi-Resort Lift Pass ☆☆☆☆
Pass Name: Takasu Mountains Ticket
Participating Ski Resorts:
*Takasu Snow Park
*Washigatake Ski Resort
*White PIA
*Hirugano Kogen Ski Resort

☆☆☆☆ Takasu Snow Shuttle Bus (Free) ☆☆☆☆
Operating Period: Dec. 21~Mar 22
New TAKASU MOUNTAINS Multi-Resort Lift Pass and Shuttle Bus System

Shinhotaka Ropeway to Introduce New Double-Decker Gondolas in 2020

November 13 , 2019
Shinhotaka Ropeway, Japan’s only double-decker aerial tramway, is introducing new double-decker gondolas on their upper lift next year as part of their 50th anniversary celebration and to allow visitors of different nationalities to better enjoy the aerial tram experience.

Features of the new gondolas:
*Expanded area of glass windows・walls to allow for 360°panoramic viewing
*Clear glass that provides more resistance against extreme temperatures
*4 in-car monitors that will provide information in multiple languages

***Important Info***
In order to install the new gondolas, Shinhotaka Ropeway (and all related facilities) will be closed for about a month and a half from May 27, 2020.

【Last Day for Current Gondolas】 May 26, 2020
【Ropeway Closure Dates】May 27, 2020~July 14, 2020
【Grand Re-Opening and 50th Anniversary of Shinhotaka Ropeway】 July 15, 2020
Shinhotaka Ropeway to Introduce New Double-Decker Gondolas in 2020

【Oct. 21 Update】 Access from Tokyo to the Hida Region (Takayama, Shirakawa-go, Gero, Hida City)

October 21 , 2019
We would like to express our deepest sympathies to the people and areas affected by Typhoon Hagibis (Typhoon 19).
While public transportation within Gifu remains relatively unaffected by Typhoon Hagibis, infrastructural damages in other parts of the country have in turn impacted certain routes from Tokyo to Takayama, Shirakawa-go, and other parts of the Hida Region. Please continue reading for the latest news:

〇〇〇 Trains 〇〇〇
JR East plans to restore Hokuriku Shinkansen services to Toyama and Kanazawa Station on October 25 (though the number of services will slightly lower than usual).
【For more info】 https://www.jreast.co.jp/e/

≪Please use the Tokaido Shinkansen Route (Via Nagoya Station) until Hokuriku Shinkansen services to Toyama resume≫
① Take a Tokaido Shinkansen from Tokyo (or Shinagawa) to Nagoya Station
② From Nagoya Station take a JR Ltd. Exp. Wide-View Hida to Gero or Takayama Station

〇〇〇 Highway Buses 〇〇〇
All bus services from Takayama to Tokyo have been restored
【For more info】https://www.nouhibus.co.jp/bus_service_information/

〇〇〇 Related websites/information hotlines 〇〇〇
☆Railway Companies☆
• JR Central Tokaido Shinkansen:
• https://traininfo.jr-central.co.jp/shinkansen/pc/en/index.html
• JR Central Conventional/Express Trains (Takayama Line, Tokaido Line, ect.): https://traininfo.jr-central.co.jp/zairaisen/index.html?lang=en
• Meitetsu Railway: https://www.meitetsu.co.jp/eng/
• Nagaragawa Railway: http://www.nagatetsu.co.jp/
• Yoro Railway: https://www.yororailway.co.jp/
• Tarumi Railway: https://tarumi-railway.com/en/
• Akechi Railway: https://www.aketetsu.co.jp/

☆News and Weather Conditions☆
• NHK World-Japan:
• JNTO (Japan National Tourism Organization):

☆JNTO Japan Visitor Hotline (EN, CN,KN, and JP) ☆
• From Japan 050-3816-2787
• From Overseas +81-50-3816-2787
【Oct. 21 Update】 Access from Tokyo to the Hida Region (Takayama, Shirakawa-go, Gero, Hida City)

Stay Informed About Typhoons in Gifu/Japan with NHK World-Japan

October 9 , 2019
With yet another weekend typhoon heading towards Japan, you may be wondering if there's any way to stay up-to-date with information and news in English...
Look no further than NHK World-Japan!

Stay informed with English information about forecasted paths of travel, damages/conditions of passed areas, and current conditions of public transportation.
Stay Informed About Typhoons in Gifu/Japan with NHK World-Japan

【Events Cancelled】 Seki Cutlery Festival and Mino Washi Lantern Art Exhibition

September 25 , 2019
The Seki Cutlery Festival and Mino Washi Lantern Art Exhibition are both the largest events held in their respective cities and happen to be held on the same weekend (making a trip out to the area well worth it!).
This year the cities are working together and will offer a free shuttle buses between cities, please check the below website (Jpn) for more information.
【Shuttle bus website】 https://peraichi.com/landing_pages/view/sekimino

**********Seki Cutlery Festival**********
Seki’s katana were considered to be the favorite of samurai warlords all over Japan as they wouldn’t bend or break and were incredibly sharp! The same technology that was used to create those superior katana remains alive to this very day, utilized in the city’s blade and cutlery industry.

What better place to learn more about Japan’s swordsmithing culture or shop for some high-quality knives?
【Date】 October 12-13
【Time】 10am~5pm
【Location】 2 Chome Honmachi, Seki City (vendors will be along Honmachi-dori Street)
【Directions】 7-minute walk from Nagaragawa Railway’s Seki Station
【For more info】 http://seki-hamono.jp/eng/index.html

*********Mino Washi Lantern Art Exhibition*********
Every year Mino City holds a 2-day exhibition featuring lantern art made from Mino Washi that’s created by artists from all across the country (top prize gets 500,000 yen!).

About 500 art pieces are displayed in Mino City’s Udatsu Wall Historical District, creating a rare atmosphere that can only be experienced here. The warmth of the lantern light along with the contrasting shadows they cast admist the ancient wooden Japanese structures is sure make a trip here worthwhile!
【Date】 October 12-13
【Time】 5pm~9pm ***time lanterns are lit
【Location】 Udatsu Wall Historical District of Mino City
【Directions】 10-minute walk from the Nagaragawa Railway’s Mino-shi Station (or a 1-minute walk from “Udatsu no Machinami-dori” bus stop on the Gifu Mino Line of Gifu Bus)
【Website】 http://www.mino-city.jp/en/tourist/festival13.html
【Events Cancelled】 Seki Cutlery Festival and Mino Washi Lantern Art Exhibition

【Event Has Ended】Gifu Castle 4th Floor (Observation Deck) Periodic Closures

September 19 , 2019
The fourth floor (observation deck level) of Gifu Castle will be closed periodically in October to carry out construction work for temporarily strengthening the fourth floor’s structural resistance against earthquakes.
Please note that on these construction days, admission into Gifu Castle will be free.

※Fourth Floor Closure Days
-Weekdays from October 1~25 (excluding Oct. 14 and 22)
-Visitors will still be able to enter floors 1-3 on construction days
-On weekends and national holidays the fourth floor will be opened (castle admission fees will be required on these days)

※Gifu Castle Admission Fees
-Free on construction days (the 17 days listed above)
-Normal admission fees apply on days the fourth floor is open (weekends and national holidays)

-There may be loud noises from construction work on construction days
【Event Has Ended】Gifu Castle 4th Floor (Observation Deck) Periodic Closures

Autumn 2019 Newsletter Release

September 5 , 2019
While the heat in Gifu continues to linger on, we can see the light at the end of the tunnel!
Autumn is just around the corner which means cooler temperatures and an increase in momiji (autumn leaf) festivals. Don’t miss our latest newsletter that features some of the Gifu’s hottest autumn-leaf viewing spots and a special on samurai-related events.

Unfortunately we aren’t able to cover every event so make sure and continue to check our Facebook page for even more information!
Autumn 2019 Newsletter Release

【Event Has Ended】 Traditional Cultural Performances at the Takayama Jinya

August 26 , 2019
See the Gujo Dance, Ena Bunraku (traditional Japanese puppetry), and Kinzo Lion Dancing at the Takayama Jinya, a National Historical Site that retains the flavor of Japan’s Edo period.
English subtitles and explanation materials in English, Chinese, French, and Spanish will be available.

【Performance Schedule】
*Gujo Dance: Fri., Sep. 6 from 11:30 and 13:30 <45 seats per showing>
*Ena Bunraku: Sat., Sep. 7 from 11:00 and 15:30 <56 seats per showing>
*Kinzo Lion Dancing: Sun., Sep. 8 from 11:00 and 15:30 <42 seats per showing>
【Location】 Takayama Jinya
【Cost】 430 yen(Takayama Jinya entry fee)and a Participation Ticket are required
【Notes】 Participation Tickets will be distributed in front of Takayama Jinya on the day of the performance from 9:00, however, advanced orders can be made from Aug. 23 online.
The website will include an explanation in English of how to order the Participation Tickets so please make sure to check it out!
【Event Has Ended】 Traditional Cultural Performances at the Takayama Jinya

2020 Shirakwa-go Light Up Event

August 16 , 2019
See the UNESCO World Heritage Site Shirakawa-go illuminated at night amidst a snowy landscape, creating a magical scene that looks like it came straight out of a fairytale.
This event only occurs six nights a year and due to its popularity there are rules and regulations in place to ensure the safety of visitors and the local villagers.

The Shirakawa-go website for the light-up event has been updated for the 2020 year so make sure and go through it carefully if you are interested in attending!
2020 Shirakwa-go Light Up Event

Mino Washi to be Used for 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Certificates

August 1 , 2019
Congratulations to Mino City, whose hand-crafted Mino Washi paper (“Mino Tesuki Washi” in Japanese) have officially been chosen to be used for the ceremonial certificates given to the top eight placers of each sport/event of the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games.

*****About Mino Washi*****
Papermaking has a history of over 1,300 years in the city of Mino and has encouraged the development of various crafting industries in the surrounding area (such as traditional Japanese lantern, umbrella, and fan-making).
The Mino Washi paper that’s made here is highly praised for having a nice look and feel, being extremely thin yet difficult to tear, and for how beautifully light shines through it.
Hon-Minoshi, the highest quality of Mino Washi paper, was even registered as a UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage in 2014.

Mino Washi Activities↴↴↴
Mino Washi to be Used for 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Certificates

Ji-Kabuki Performances Takayama Jinya・Magome-juku・Hazama Sake Brewery

July 29 , 2019
Watch special Ji-Kabuki performances – a form of Kabuki (a traditional Japanese performing art) that’s more relaxed and down-to-earth than the standard Kabuki as it was originally created to entertain everyone from farmers and commoners to samurai lords – this summer and fall at popular sightseeing spots!

Special performances will be held in Takayama (Takayama Jinya) and Nakatsugawa (Magome-juku and Hazama Sake Brewery) in places that are easier to access than the more traditional theaters that performances are normally held in.

**Takayama Jinya Performances**
【Dates】 Aug 17・18 and Aug 31・Sep 1
【Time】 19:30 (doors open at 19:00)
【Admission】 1,000円 (includes souvenir)
【Venue】 Takayama Jinya, Takayama
【Access】 8-min walk from JR Takayama Station
【Notes】 Tickets can be purchased day-of at the Takayama Jinya or beforehand online

**Magome-za Performances**
【Dates】 July 20・27, Aug 10・24, Oct 12・26, Nov 9・23
【Time】 20:00 (doors open at 19:30)
【Admission】 500円 (includes souvenir)
【Venue】 Magome Assembly Hall (next to the Magome Tourism Info. Center), Magome-juku, Nakatsugawa
【Website】 https://www.jikabuki.net/スペシャルプログラム-special-program/特別公演-2019馬籠座歌舞伎/

**Hazama-za Performances**
【Dates】 Oct 5・6, Nov 2・3
【Time】 12:00 (doors open at 11:00) and 14:30 (doors open at 13:30)
【Admission】 1,500円
【Venue】 Hazama Sake Brewery, Nakatsugawa
【Access】 12-min walk from JR Nakatsugawa Station in Nakatsugawa-juku
【Notes】 Bus tours from Nagoya are available
【Website】 https://www.jikabuki.net/スペシャルプログラム-special-program/特別公演-2019はざま座歌舞伎/
Ji-Kabuki Performances Takayama Jinya・Magome-juku・Hazama Sake Brewery

【Event Has Ended】Gujo Dance Season Just Around the Corner

July 11 , 2019
The Gujo Dance Festival – one of Japanese three most famous bon dances with over 400 years of history – begins July 13 and will be held across 30 non-consecutive nights until September 7.

Everyone is invited to join in the dancing and the moves for each dance are quite easy to remember (just hop in the dance circle and copy the people around you).
While not required, we recommend dancing in geta (traditional Japanese clog-like sandals) as they are highly integrated into the various dances.

Make sure to check the below schedule as times and venues change each night.
【Event Has Ended】Gujo Dance Season Just Around the Corner

Michelin Guide Restaurants and Lodging in Gifu

June 18 , 2019
Learn about the restaurants and lodging facilities in Gifu that made the Michelin Guide Aichi-Gifu-Mie 2019.

The Michelin Guide Aichi-Gifu-Mie 2019 was just released in Japan this past May and while there are currently no plans to make an English version in print you can find all of the listings in English on a special feature Michelin page.
Michelin Guide Restaurants and Lodging in Gifu

Explore Gifu’s Majestic Nature with Nohi Bus Tours

June 13 , 2019
Ever want to do some hiking or mountain climbing in Japan but don’t have access to a car? Well now there’s no need to worry about transportation because Nohi Bus is offering a large selection of hiking, mountain climbing, and trekking tours that depart from Takayama (but may pass by other bus stops depending on the tour).

Courses available:
*Goshikigahara Forest Hiking Tour (3 options available)
*Norikura Kengamine Summit Climb
*Nishiho Maruyama Climb
*Hida-Osaka Falls
*Amou Native Forest Guided Tour (2 options available)

Other regular course:
*Kamikochi, Norikura and Shinhotaka Ropeway Bus Tour
*Shinhotaka Ropeway Star Gazing Tour
*Nakasendo Samurai Road Walk

Tours are offered through autumn (ending periods are different depending on the course)
Explore Gifu’s Majestic Nature with Nohi Bus Tours

Summer 2019 Newsletter Release

June 6 , 2019
With the temperature rising over 30°in various parts of the prefecture, it’s safe to safe that summer has arrived! There are a wide range of seasonal activities that are only possible in warm weather; just make sure to drink lots of water and stay hydrated!
Don’t miss our summer newsletter which includes a selection of the activities and events held here in the summer.
Please keep in mind that not everything is covered so make sure to continue and check back here for updated news and info!
Summer 2019 Newsletter Release

【Event Has Ended】 Section of Chubu Jukan Expwy Temporarily Closed (No Major Impact on Travel to Taka…

May 13 , 2019
For those traveling by car around the Takayama area please note that the Chubu Jukan Expwy between Takayama-Nishi I.C. and Hida-Kiyomi I.C. will be closed for repairs and inspections from May 13~July 12.

This won’t have a large effect on travel to Takayama as one can easily take National Highway 158 instead for the 11 km section

【Closed Road】 Chubu Jukan Expwy between Takayama-Nishi I.C. and Hida-Kiyomi I.C.
【Closure Period】 May 13 to July 12
【Closure Reason】 Road and bridge repairs and inspection of tunnel facilities
【Detour Route】 From the Tokai-Hokuriku Expwy to Takayama City please use National Highway 158
【Event Has Ended】 Section of Chubu Jukan Expwy Temporarily Closed (No Major Impact on Travel to Takayama)

Gujo Hachiman Added to Shoryudo Bus Pass

May 7 , 2019
Ever wanted to experience one of Japan’s Three Most Famous Bon-Dance Festivals or make your very own food replica?
Well now’s the time to try because Gujo Hachiman is now an official stop on the 3-day “Takayama-Shirakawago-Kanazawa Course” and 5-day “Wide Course” of Meitetsu Railway’s Shoryudo Bus Pass. For more info see the below link↴↴↴

***Gujo Hachiman Info***
Gujo Hachiman Added to Shoryudo Bus Pass

2019 G.W. and Autumn Naegi Castle Ruins Shuttle Bus

April 26 , 2019
During the 10-day 2019 Golden Week holiday period and weekends/national holidays from September~November Kita Ena is offering direct shuttle bus services between JR Nakatsugawa Station and Naegi Castle Ruins.

The Naegi Castle Ruins are the remains of an ancient mountain fortress that sits atop a 170-meter-tall mountain in Nakatsugawa City. In order to make up for the lack of space on top of the mountain the castle’s creators ingeniously adapted the mountain’s pre-existing boulders into the castle’s design making it an architectural feat as it originally built around 1532.

The lookout point at the very top of the castle ruins provides a beautiful 360 degree panoramic view of the surrounding Kiso Valley, Kiso River and nearby Mt. Ena.

***Naegi Castle Ruins***
2019 G.W. and Autumn Naegi Castle Ruins Shuttle Bus