|Centrip Editorial Board

Five Things You Have to Do in Inuyama's Castle Town

What is the Inuyama Castle Town?

The town has flourished for hundreds of years and is centered around a national treasure, Inuyama Castle, where samurai warriors fought at during Japan's Warring States Period. The numerous old Japanese-style houses will make you feel like you are back in the Edo period. There are also many popular shops. The town has been drawing attention because of the unique experiences you will have around town and because of all the delicious foods you can enjoy!

It takes about 55 minutes from Chubu International Airport to Inuyama on the Meitetsu train. It only takes 25 minutes from Nagoya Station. Because of its great location, you don't need to change trains when going to Inuyama. Also, the Nagoya Subway's Tsurumai Line is directly connected to the Meitetsu Inuyama Line, which goes to Inuyama station.

Five Things You Have to Do in Inuyama's Castle Town

Walking around the castle town is something you don't want to miss when you are in the Inuyama area. The castle town is about a 15-minute walk from Inuyama station, so it's very convenient. The area is a great place to go for a walk and snack along the way and Centrip Japan will introduce some spots you should check out while you are in Inuyama.

From the entrance of Honmachi-dori (street), which is the main street in the castle town, to Inuyama castle, it is about a 20-minute walk. On the way or back to Inyuma castle, why don't you make a detour to enjoy the castle town?

1. Take a Walk Around the Town in a Kimono: Kimono Rental Shop Inuyama Komachi

Inuyama-komachi at the Honmachi-dori (street) is a casual kimono rental shop. At the shop you'll find everything you need to change into a kimono and the friendly shop staff will dress you up in an hour. You need to return your kimono by 4PM, so getting there early in the morning to rent is a good idea.

There are 100 kinds of kimono! Yukata and hakama are also very popular rental items. They are available for both women and men. We recommend "couple discount".
There are many bags, shoes and accessories available. You can even rent beautiful Japanese umbrellas and shawls.
They can even get your hair done! (which is not very common in a kimono rental shop.)

You can experience sado (tea ceremony) if you rent a kimono. In a historical tea room, you will have an experienced tea master, and staff who speaks English to explain all about Japanese tea ceremonies. You can also enjoy wagashi (Japanese sweets) with your tea. The ceremony usually takes about 45 minutes.

You can make reservations for a kimono rental and/or tea ceremonies (tea ceremonies only on Mondays and Wednesdays) on the official website. When Inuyama Komachi is closed, try other kimono rental shops such as Inuyama Biyori which is mentioned on the Inuyama tourist information site.

It is located on the second floor of the restaurant. Be sure to arrive by your reservation time.
You will find the stairs on your left at the end of the restaurant. If someone at the restaurant asks you something, just say "Kimono Rental" and you will be fine.
You have to take off your shoes before you go up the stairs. Open the door on your right on the second floor and tell the staff that you have a reservation.

2. Enjoy a Gorgeous Sushi Lunch: Sushi Goto

Goto is popular for its gorgeous sushi lunch, which is presented beautifully. It is located in a quiet place in an alley of Honmachi street. The owner who is also sushi and seafood chef opened the restaurant because he wanted to serve dishes which are available only in Inuyama. The atmosphere of the old Japanese house is one of the attractive things too.

The owner is not very good at speaking in foreign languages, but he is very willing to communicate. Have a seat at the counter and enjoy the conversation with the owner!
An English menu is available. He chooses fresh fish everyday at the fish market, so the types of sushi are different every day.
They serve sushi lunches, snacks, rice wines and hand-made plum wines.

The number of the popular "Castle Town" lunch sets are limited. How the chef presents the sushi is beautiful. All the sushi look small, but you will be surprised to know how full you feel after you finish eating. The Inuyama Fruit Sour, which has a lot of seasonal fruits, is also popular. You can get an Inuyama Fruit Sour to-go.

Assorted sushi (deluxe, ¥1500) comes in a set of 12 pieces of sushi, miso soup, and homemade sweets. Assorted sushi (regular, ¥980) is also recommended. They accept only party plans at night, so try there at lunchtime!

3. Make a Beautiful Memory with a Heart-Shaped Ema: Sankou Inari Shrine

There is a shrine at the entrance of Inuyama castle. When it was established was unknown, but it's been here for more than 430 years. This shrine is said to bring good fortune to families and businesses. Like most of inari (good luck in business) shrines, you'll find a great number of red Shinto gates and fox statues (a symbol for good luck in business).

At Japanese shrines, people write their wishes on the pentagon-shaped placard called ema, and hang them on the trees. At Sankou Inari shrine, ema are pink and heart-shaped and people who visit this shrine pray for romance. Also, there is water where you can wash your money. If you wash your money there, it is said that the money will multiply and come back to you.

4. Have a Break at a Japanese-Style Cafe While Travelling

Honmachi-Saryo is a Japanese-style café made from kominka (old Japanese house) of more than 100 years old. Buy a popular heart-shaped soft serve and snap photos in front of a heart-shaped water tank! Inside the store, there is Horigotatsu (Japanese-style table with a heating appliance) bar and a private room to take a break. There are also many delicious-looking menus.

Matcha zenzai (a bowl of candied red beans) with chestnuts is ¥850. Koi (romance) zenzai with heart-shaped dumplings are very popular too.
Matcha latte (¥500). Inuyama castle drawn as a latte art is very cute to look at. Both and iced lattes are available.
Mini dengaku (traditional dish of tofu with sweet miso sauce that is very popular around the castle town) (¥650) A variety of dishes is available, too

The place you must see when visiting Honmachi-Saryo is the garden in the back of the store. The owner made the garden because he wanted visitors to experience a bit of Japanese culture. You can see beautiful greens and a small stream from inside the store. You can also go out to see the garden, too. Check out the video below!

Movie

Movie

5. Handmade Gifts You Can Only Find in Inuyama: Traditional Accessory Shop, Takumi

The shop sells traditional Kyoto silk textiles, tango chirimen, and handmade accessories. The owner uses a 100-year-old Singer sewing machine to make the products on-site. Many other works by other artists from Inuyama are also available. The establishment was built more than 100 years ago feels quite cozy. You can find casual gifts as well as traditional artworks!

Hair clips using chirimen fabrics. Each one has its own original drawings and colors.
Shawls and scarves are made of high-quality silk and they feel different from other silk products. Perfect as gifts for friends and family.
Mini decorated kimono band. Gorgeous Fabric and Delicate Artistry

The most popular gift is the silk postcard and you can only buy them at this shop. Inuyama Castle and Inuyama Festival depicting Inuyama are drawn on the postcards and are just beautiful. You can even buy stamps for international mail at the store. These are great to send to your friends and family!

Directions from Inuyama Station to the Castle Town

You can find the Inuyama Tourist Information Center after walking out of the entrance at Inuyama Station. There are brochures in English, Chinese (traditional and simplified), Vietnamese and Korean.
At the tourist information center, you can borrow an electric pen which gives audio guidance around Inuyama. It is free but a 1,000yen deposit is required.
Go down the stairs which is at the right side of the tourist information center.
After you go down the stairs, turn left at the phone booth on your left. There is a restroom on your right at the end of the alley.
Go across the crosswalk at the right of a rotary, then you will find a drugstore with the sign with a drawing of a monkey on it. Walk straight.
After walking for a while, the sidewalk will narrow, so watch out the cars while walking. The sidewalk is green.
You will find a Lawson convenience store on your left after walking for about 10 minutes. Turn right at the traffic light, then you will be at the castle town. (Honmachi-dori)
When entering the castle town (Honmachi-dori), there are many kominka both on your left and right and there are no electric wires. The street is open to traffic except certain hours of holidays, so be careful of vehicles while walking.
After walking for a while, there is a public place called Donden Kan on your right exhibiting festivals in Inuyama. There are restrooms and small lounges you can use.

Since Inuyama has a castle and the castle town, you can enjoy Japanese culture and historical buildings. There are places where you can find heart-shaped works and enjoy colorful sweets. There are a lot of great places to take photos! If you're in Chubu, you need to go to Inuyama to make some great memories.

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