• Naramachi's photo

Naramachi

Nara City


Enjoy history and the latest culture while walking through the town!

Ranking among the most popular sightseeing activities in Nara such as making the rounds of the temples and shrines is a stroll through Naramachi, the old section of Nara. It is a small town around the Gango-ji Temple World Heritage site, and it is said that craftsmen were the first residents to live here. The area was bustling with merchants during the Edo period, and the buildings from that time have been preserved, with the interiors made over into shops and cafes. Because Naramachi is a compact area that stretches out only about a kilometer in each direction, walking is the best way to see it.

  • Naramachi's photo
  • Naramachi's photo
  • Naramachi's photo
  • Naramachi's photo
  • Naramachi's photo

Watch for the monkey talisman on tiled roofs, in latticed windows, and under eaves!

The distinguishing features of Naramachi scenery are the tiled roofs and latticed windows. You’ll also notice the red objects hanging under the eaves of houses. This is called the migawari saru, or “scapegoat monkey”, an amulet in the shape of a red monkey used to ward off evil spirits since ancient times. Naramachi is well known for strings of migawari saru hanging from the eaves of houses. If you’re interested in learning about traditional merchant houses, be sure to visit the Naramachi Koshino Ie, or trellis house. This is a reproduction of a traditional merchant house that you can go inside and to see how people used to live in olden days. There are also small temples and halls such as Koujindo and Gangou-ji Temple, where you can still feel the touch of faith in everyday life.

  • Naramachi's photo
  • Naramachi's photo
  • Naramachi's photo
  • Naramachi's photo
  • Naramachi's photo
  • Naramachi's photo

Peek into workshops and cafes to find unique souvenirs!

There are cafes, general stores, and workshops run by young proprietors in every corner of Naramachi. Café Kanakana is a popular café in an old renovated merchant house. There are tatami seats where you take off your shoes and tables on earthen floors where you can enjoy creative Japanese cuisine. Shiki is where the famous Nara socks are made of organic materials. Inside the renovated old Japanese-style house you’ll find a cute assortment of socks and hand towels with prints of deer, etc. This is the perfect shop if you’re looking for a unique souvenir.

  • Naramachi's photo
  • Naramachi's photo
  • Naramachi's photo
  • Naramachi's photo
  • Naramachi's photo
  • Naramachi's photo
  • Naramachi's photo
  • Naramachi's photo
  • Naramachi's photo

For reference

Naramachi Koushino Ie (Trellis House)

  • Address
    44 Gangoujicho, Nara-shi, Nara-ken
  • Telephone
    0742-23-4820
  • Open
    9:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M.
  • Closed
    Mondays (Closed the following day when Monday falls on a national holiday), December 26 to January 5.
  • Price
    Free of charge

Kanakana

  • Address
    13 Kunodocho, Nara-shi, Nara-ken
  • Telephone
    0742-22-3214
  • Open
    11:00 A.M. to 7:30 P.M.
  • Closed
    Mondays
  • Price
    1,300 yen for Kanakana gohan, etc.

Shiki

  • Address
    18 Takamikadocho, Nara-shi, Nara-ken
  • Telephone
    0742-77-0722
  • Open
    10:00 A.M. to 6:00 P.M.
  • Closed
    Irregular days

Access

Kansai International Airport is a 1 hour, 45 minute flight from New Chitose Airport.
Kansai International Airport is a 1 hour flight from Haneda Airport.
Kansai International Airport is a 1 hour, 20 minute flight from Narita Airport.
Kansai International Airport is a 1 hour, 15 minute flight from Fukuoka Airport.
Kansai International Airport is a 2 hour, 20 minute flight from Naha Airport.
Take the shuttle bus from Kansai International Airport to Kintetsunara Station (approx.1 hr. 25 min).
  • Or take the Nankai Electric Railway from Kansai International Airport via Kintetsu Namba Station to Kintetsunara Station (1 hr. 30 min.).
The shop is a 20 minute walk from the station.

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