Tohoku

We’ve compiled the best of the best in Tohoku - browse our top choices for the top things to see or do during your stay.

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  • 1. Chuson-ji

    Religious Building/Site/Shrine

    Founded in AD 850, this temple's highlight is its Konjikido (Golden Hall), which was completed in 1124. The first Ou Fujiwara lord, Kiyohara...Read More

  • 2. Ginzan

    Historic District/Site

    Ginzan Onsen is known for its unique landscape and distinguished Taisho period (1912–26) architectural design. A flood once destroyed the village...Read More

  • 3. Ginzan Onsen

    Hot Spring

    Ginzan is another relaxing hot spring close to both Yamagata and Sendai, but this one is more isolated than Sakunami. It's about two to three...Read More

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  • 4. Ho-Onji

    Religious Building/Site/Shrine

    On the outskirts of Mt. Atagoyama is a temple district where a dozen temples are clustered. This one houses 499 statues of Buddha's disciples...Read More

  • 5. Osore-zan

    Scenic Drive

    If you have a car, a day trip to the uppermost "hook" of the Mutsu/Shimokita Peninsula is highly recommended. A 30-minute drive north of Mutsu...Read More

  • 6. Risshaku-ji

    Religious Building/Site/Shrine

    Yamadera is like something conjured out of the ethereal mists of an ancient Japanese charcoal painting. Built in the year AD 860, Yamadera's...Read More

  • 7. Shirakami Sanchi

    Forest

    South of Mt. Iwaki are the Shirakami Mountains, a UNESCO World Heritage site that is home to the world's largest virgin beech forest. The area...Read More

  • 8. Towada-Hachimantai National Park

    Park (National/State/Provincial)

    For walking among the splendid and vast virgin beech, pine, and cedar forests deep in the heart of Tohoku, you could not pick a better destination...Read More

  • 9. Zuihoden

    Aoba-ku | Memorial/Monument/Tomb

    The grand mausoleum of Masamune Date, the most revered daimyo of ancient Sendai, was made in the style of the Momoyama Period (16th century...Read More

  • 10. Akita City Folklore and Performing Arts Center

    Museum/Gallery

    If you are not in town for Akita's famous Kanto Festival, this museum is the next best thing. Try balancing one of the poles topped with paper...Read More

  • 11. Akita Museum of Art

    Museum/Gallery

    One of the best reasons to visit this new museum is the building, designed by renowned architect Tadao Ando. The museum's highlight is the enormous...Read More

  • 12. Ando House

    Notable Building

    A visit to this miso and soy sauce business, still located in the historic home of the Ando merchant family, is a treat for both the eyes and...Read More

  • 13. Aomori Kenritsu Bijutsukan

    Museum/Gallery

    This contemporary arts museum houses a collection of works by Munakata Shiko (1903–75), Nara Yoshitomo (1959–), and Terayama Shuji (1935–83...Read More

  • 14. Aoyagi Samurai Manor Museum

    Araya-omotemachi | Notable Building

    Several well-preserved samurai houses date from the founding of Kakunodate. The most renowned is Aoyagi-ke, which functions as a museum and...Read More

  • 15. Auga

    Market/Bazaar

    Fish, shellfish, preserved seaweed, and fish eggs—in short, all manner of marine organisms—are hawked by hundreds of vendors in this seafood...Read More

  • 16. Chosho-ji

    Religious Building/Site/Shrine

    Thirty-three of the Soto Sect's Zen temples line up along Zenrin-gai (Zen Forest Street), at the end of which Chosho-ji temple stands with great...Read More

  • 17. Fuku-ura Jima

    Beach

    From the Godaido Temple it's a short walk across a pedestrian bridge to the islet of Fuku-ura Jima. For the ¥200 toll you can break away from...Read More

  • 18. Gas-san

    Religious Building/Site/Shrine

    Buses leave JR Tsuruoka Station at 6, 7, 10:15 and 12:46 in summer for the nearly two-hour trip (¥1,560) to the Gas-san Hachigo-me stop. From...Read More

  • 19. Geibikei Funa-kudari

    Higashiyama-cho | Other Attraction

    The surreal Geibikei Gorge is a slightly decrepit, definitely kitschy tourist attraction. You board a gondola at the local river, and your gondolier...Read More

  • 20. Godaido

    Religious Building/Site/Shrine

    Just to the right of the ferry pier in Matsu-shima is this small temple constructed in 1609 at the behest of daimyo Masamune Date. The temple...Read More

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