Have you ever traveled to Nakasendō road or any of the post town stations along the way?

There are beautiful, ancient, and picturesque trails in Nakasendo中山道 where you will feel nostalgic, especially in the Kisoji area (Gifu & Nagano). These trekking routes between the post towns are where you can enjoy scenic mountain hikes.

In this blog, I visited and was introduced to some of the Kisoji road post towns in Aug 2021. I hope you’ll enjoy it!

What is Nakasendo and Kisoji?


The route in red is Nakasendō and light blue is Tōkaidō. (The black color is Kōshūkaidō, by the way)

The Nakasendō (中山道, Central Mountain Route) was built during Edo period (1603 – 1867 ), and one of the two that connected Edo (modern-day Tokyo) to Kyoto in Japan. There were 69 post-town stations between Tokyo and Kyoto, crossing through Saitama, Gunma, Nagano, Gifu and Shiga prefectures, with a total distance of about 534 km (332 mi).

Many of the post towns were once gone or abandoned, but during the Showa period (1926–1989), a number of them were restored and preserved back to their former glory with the help of the local people. Today, they have become popular tourist spots.

Unlike the coastal Tōkaidō 東海道 (東 = east, 海 = sea, 道 = road), the Nakasendō traveled inland as it shows in Kanji (中 = middle, 山 = mountain, 道 = road)” It is said that Nakasendō was favored by female travelers back then as it didn’t require a river crossing.

Kisoji (木曽路, Kiso road) is a part of Nakasendō from Magome to Niekawa, and there are 11 post towns located in the mountainous area of Kiso.

Nakatugawa-juku 中津川宿

Nakatsugawa-juku (中津川宿, Nakatsugawa-juku) is the 45th of the 69 stations of the Nakasendō, located in Nakatsugawa …continue reading