February 11, 2018

Gujo Hachiman Hakurankan Museum in Japan: A Glimpse of Gujo

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  • Gujo Hachiman Hakurankan Museum

    Right after our trip to Sample Kobo, we walked along the streets of Gujo Hachiman to see what the town looks like. Walking along Gujo Hachiman felt like traveling back in time to the olden times of Japan. It was the complete opposite of Tokyo’s fast-paced city and it was beautiful that way. I remember asking if it was usually this quiet and they said it was just how the neighborhood is on a normal day. According to our guide, Gujo Hachiman is a known jokamachi (castletown)—a settlement that surrounds Japanese castles used for defense purposes.

    Various images that depict Gujo

    As we walked through the streets of Gujo, we visited their city museum called Gujo Hachiman Hakurankan. It was said to be built around the 1920s, being a tax office during the Taisho period. We went inside to see what Gujo Hachiman Hakurankan offers.

    You’ll find historical figures that will make you learn about the culture of Gujo

    Replica of how they perform the Gujo-odori dance in Gujo

    The Gujo Hachiman Hakurankan Museum houses exhibits which will make you learn about Gujo’s historical city.  It’s famous for the Gujo-odori dance demonstration, a traditional dance recognized as an Intangible Cultural Folk Asset by the government of Japan. They do a live demo of it 4 times a day, where their Japanese women staff gracefully perform the dance. Apparently, they invite guests to perform with them so we got to dance along with them. The steps were pretty easy, and we felt honored to be able to do it with them.

    Japanese dancers perform the Gujo-odori dance

    Hakurankan Museum preserves old documents and other important replicas that best explain the culture and traditions of Gujo. It has a mini souvenir shop where you can buy Japanese delicacies. It’s also where we tried the Amazake. Prior to drinking it, I thought it had a similar taste to sake. But when I tried it, I loved its sweet taste! It’s a traditional Japanese drink made from fermented rice that’s best for desserts too.

    You can buy gifts from their souvenir shop

    Gujo Hachiman Hakurankan Museum is a must-visit tourist destination when in Gujo.

    DETAILS

    Address: 50 Tono-machi, Hachiman, Gujo City, Gifu Prefecture, Japan
    Operating Hours: 9 am to 5 pm (closes at 6pm during Gujo-Odori dance days)
    Admission Fee: ¥520 (Adult); ¥310 (Child); For groups 20 or more, Adults are charged ¥420 and Children ¥250
    Parking: Free with spaces for 20 cars and 5 buses (Advanced reservations are required for buses)
    TEL: +81-575-65-3215
    Email: gujohaku@gujohachiman.com
    How to get here: It’s just a short distance walk from the Jokamachi Plaza bus station.


    Written by Jastine Valeriano

               
               
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