All About Japan

Breathe in that Fresh Nenba Air

Japanese Countryside Yamanashi

Yamanashi, one of the prefectures bordering Tokyo, is where you’ll find Saiko Iyashi no Sato Nenba, or just Nenba, for short. With Mount Fuji standing in the background, Nenba contains no less than 20 structures with the sort of thatched roofs that could still be seen decades after Japan became an industrialized nation.

So while the complex, which is a little more than two-and-a-half hours from Tokyo by bus (or just over three hours if you take the train part-way) is technically a museum, it feels more like a village as you stroll through the grounds.

Until about 50 years ago, Nenba was a farming community. In 1966, though, a typhoon tore through the region, severely damaging homes and causing the residents to pack up and relocate. As this sort of architecture became less and less common even in the Japanese countryside, though, cultural conservationists took up the cause of restoring the Nenba farmhouses. In 2006, their efforts led to the opening of the current facility, which gives visitors a peek at how the town used to be.

Related Stories:
Japan’s 30 best travel destinations, as chosen by overseas visitors
Expat’s video says “Welcome to My Japan,” and you ought to take him up on the awesome invitation
You’d never guess this strange bubble house village is located in Japan

Read full story: