A Seto Inland Sea port town that has preserved streets from the Edo Era within a national park

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A flourishing old port town in the center of the Seto Inland Sea. Used as the model for the film “Ponyo”, its Edo Era streets still remain.
鞆の浦, Fukuyama-shi, Hiroshima
(084) 982-3200

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The feeling of an old nostalgic port town that still remains

The old townscape of Tomonoura has existing streets that were printed on town maps from the Edo Era. There are ancient buildings over a wide area with about 80 of them representing the Edo Era, 90 of them from the Meiji Era and 300 of them from the Taisho and Showa Eras with many of them still being used as residences and stores. This nostalgic Japanese scene has been selected as one of the Top 100 Scenic Municipalities of Japan and as one of the Top 100 Historical Natural Features of Japan.

Many places that have been designated nationally as Important Cultural Properties

The Important Cultural Property-designated Ota House is an old mercantile house representing the Seto Inland Sea that relates its historic value to the present. Its main room, kitchen and especially the sake brewery have been splendidly preserved. The Taicho-ro Reception Hall is a guest room adjacent to the Main Hall of Fukuzen-ji Temple that has been nationally designated as a Historic Site. The view from the tatami room is wonderful, and it is said that a Korean envoy once praised the view as the most picturesque scenery in Japan. As well, there are other visual highlights such as Nunakuma Shrine where many of Tomonoura’s festivals have been held and Joyato which is an Edo Era lighthouse and a symbol of Tomonoura. With so many famous sites, you will want to take the time to walk around.

May is filled with events

A harbinger of early summer, the Kanko Taiami is a 380-year-old tradition of net fishing from a ship. Tourists board an excursion ferry and follow after a fleet of net-fishing vessels. After the fishing is done, the tourists then board the lead vessel where they can buy the caught fish. Fireworks festivals are generally held in summer, but the one in Tomonoura is held at the end of May. The fireworks are launched from Bentenjima Island and reflect off the ocean to provide an exquisite performance.

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