Shizuoka History and Culture

Historic sites illustrated in ukiyoe woodblock prints, ryokan inns loved by literary figures and artists, and specialty cuisines passed down from long ago… Enjoy a trip spanning the ages, in Shizuoka Prefecture, steeped in history.

Since being used by Tokugawa leyasu in his “cloistered shogun period“, Shizuoka Prefecture has been a base, for traditional culture. At Shizuoka’s many art galleries, and museums, you can view valuable cultural assets and famous articles from around the world.

The 53 Stations of the Tokaido

The 53 Station of the Tokaido, passing down Japan’s unique highway culture The 53 stations along the famous Tokaido route that connected Edo with Kyoto. Shizuoka Prefecture has 22 off the 53 stations painted by ukiyoe artist Utagawa Hiroshige Much history of these remains even now, communicating to us Japan’s unique Edo Period culture of the highway.

Horai Bridge, Shimada City

The Horaibashi spans the Oi River, and as one of the few remaining old toll bridges, is a popular sightseeing attraction. It has been registered in the Guinness World Records as the ‘longest wooden footbridge in the world’ (897.4 meters).

Access – From JR Shimada Station, an approximately 25-minuie walk.

Hamamatsu Castle, Hamamatsu City

Hamamatsu Castle within Hamamatsu Castle Park was built by Tokugawa leyasu, and is known as the “Caste of Success,” from where he set off to conquer the whole country. The park also features a Japanese garden, and central grassed area. More Details: Hamamatsu Castle Park

Access – From JR Hamamatsu Station approximately 5 minutes by bus get off at shiyakushomae, then an a approximately 3-minute walk.

Fujisan Hongu Sengentaisha Shrine, Fujinomiya City

This is the head shrine of some 1.30O Sengen shrines throughout Japan. The top shrine in the suruga area, from the grounds of the Sengentaisha Shrine. The inner shrine has been designated an Important Cultural Property.

Access – From JH Fujinomiya Station, an approximately 10-minute walk.

Tokaikan, Ito City

This three-floor onsen ryokan hotel is just as it was at the time it was-built in the mid-1920s. Its large, fully-tiled baths illustrate the care taken throughout the hotel by the master-craftsmen.

Access – From JR Ito Station, an approximately 10-minute walk.

Kiunkaku, Atami City

Kiunkaku, said to be one of the three greatest second houses in Atami. A famous villa from the Taisho Period (1912 – 1926) that has also been used as a ryokan. The grounds include beautiful examples of traditional Japanese architecture that incorporate elements of western style, and are well worth viewing. This is a famous historical arc cultural landmark, and when it was a hotel, it was a favorite of many great authors such as Naoya Shiga, Junichiro Tanizaki, and Osamu Dazai.

Access – From JR Atami Station, an approximately 20-minute walk.

Rakujuen Park, Mishima City

Constructed in 1890 as a villa by Prince Komatsu Akohita. It features a small pond fed by snowmelt from Mt. Fuji, a natural forest and he Rakujukan halt containing cultural assets. A nationally designated beauty spot and a protected natural treasure.

Access – From JR Mishima station, an approximately 2-minute walk.

Ryosenji Temple, Shimoda City

This is the Ryosenji Temple where at the end of the edo period Shimoda Treaty was signed between Japan and United States by Commodore Matthew Calbraith Perry and Tokugawa shogunate of Japan. The shrines treasure house store over a thousand originial items, which displays a number of artifacts related to Commodore Perry, the Black Ships, and contact between Japan and the West. In recent years, the temple has also been noted for the profusion of jasmine flowers in its gardens. Three large Gorinto stone monuments on the grounds (the graves of a number of the Shimoda bugyo) are designated as Shimoda City historic monuments. In May the whole temple yard of Ryosenji is suffused with the intoxicating fragrance of Jasmin flowers. Jasmin flower festival is held in Ryosenji from May 11 to May 31.

Access – By Walking: 10 min. from Shimoda Train Station. By Car: 4 min. from Shimoda Train Station and 15 min. from Pension Sakuraya.
Ryosenji Temple 3-12-12, Shimoda city Shizuoka Pref. Tel: Ryosenji Temple: 0558-22-0657, Treasure Hall: 0558-22-2805 Fax: 0558-23-6355

Website: http://www.izu.co.jp/~ryosenji/eigo.html

Shizuoka Prefectural Museum of Art, Shizuoka City

A collection of approximately 2,450 pieces. This stores and exhibits an extensive range of articles, with a theme of landscapes of the east and west. The Rodin ga1lery is a Permanent exhibit featuring 32 of his sculptures, including The Gates of Hell, and as such, is unique in Japan. The sculptures of Rodin, including “The Gates of Hell”, and the works of other sculptors are displayed in the Rodin Wing. The Bridge Gallery connects the exhibition room 7 and the Rodin Wing.

Access – About 6 minutes by Shizutetsu bus “Bound for Kenritsu Bijyutsukan” from JR Kusanagi Station. 20 minutes by taxi from South Exit of JR Shizuoka Station or 30 minutes by Shizutetsu bus from North Exit. 15 minutes on foot or 3 minutes by bus from Shizutetsu “Bijyutsukan-Mae Bus Stop”.

Shizuoka Prefectural Museum of Art 53-2, Yada, Suruga-ku, Shizuoka City, 422-8002 Shizuoka Pref. TEL: 054-263-5755 FAX: 054-263-5742

Hour: Open: From:10:00 – 17:30(admission ends at 17:00), Closed: Mondays, if Monday is a Holiday the museum is open, and closed Tuesday.

Website: http://www.spmoa.shizuoka.shizuoka.jp/english/

Hanged Doll Omament Festival, Higashiizu Town

January through March

Hanging dots are a custom from the Edo period. They are made of old cloth, imbued with the wishes of there makes, and hung by a red thread at bath sides of dolls arrayed on a tered stand. These attractive hanging dolls all around the venue welcome in the spring at Inatori Onsen.

Hamamatsu Museum of Musical Instruments, Hamamatsu city

Japans first pubic museum of musical instruments. This exhibits Instruments from around the world, including Europe, Japan, the rest of Asia, and Africa. This communicates the magnificence of musical instruments.

Access – From JR Hamamatsu Station, an approximately 8-minute walk.

Tokaido Hiroshige Art Museum, Shizuoka City

The world’s only museum that focuses Utagawa Hirshige, and it contains over 1,200 woodblock prints. These valuable woodblock prints introduce you to the typical Edo-period.

Access – From JR Yui Station, an approximately 25-minute walk.

MOA Museum of Art, Atami City

A highly-regarded art museum. This holds approximately 3,500 works of art, including paintings, writings, sculptures, and ceramics, among them three national treasures and 65 important cultural assets. More Details: MOA Museum of Art

Access – From JR Atami Station, approximately 8 minutes by bus.

Ryotanji Temple, Hamamatsu City

Ryotanji is best known by the rock garden created by the art master Enshu Kobori, well-known garden creator in late 16th to 17th century. In particular, its garden is renowned as a designated national historic place, and the building is unchanged from the edo period are Prefectural designated cultural properties. This temple is very famous for its unique garden created by Mr. Enshu Kobori, a famous artistic gardener in the Edo period. The temple’s atmosphere gives you the piece of mind by seeing the great sculpture works or bhudda statues, artful calligraphy scrolls. Ryotanji Temple is the most popular temple in Hamamatsu. It is one of the Five Major Temples in Northside of Lake Hamana.

Access – From JR Hamamatsu station, approximately 45 minutes by bus. Ryotanji Temple, 1989 Inasachoiinoya, Kita-ku, Hamamatsu, Shizuoka Prefecture 431-2212, Japan.

Tel: 053-542-0480

Dai-Nippon Hotokusha, Kakegawa City

This is the main shrine of the Hotoku movement of “harmonization of morals and economics promoted by Ninomiya Kinjiro, which subsequently spread throughout Japan. This also sells Hotoku-related books. T-shirts and key holders.

Access – From JR Kahegawa Station, an approximately 8 minute walk.

Ozashiki Culture University, Ito City

A Culture University at the Tokaikan, where you can learn about the essence of Japan, Dress up as a geisha, and learn etiquette and behavior from active geisha. The geisha experience course (90 minutes) is recommended.

Access – From Izu Kyuko Line Ito Station, an approximately 10 minute walk.