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How did I start

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Hi everyone, my name is Luca, I am Italian and I have lived for more than seven years in the beautiful city of Takayama. I began my travel experience with Japan seventeen years ago, out of an innate inclination to one of the most exotic countries on the planet. I speak ​​Italian, English and Japanese. After years around the world, I decided to stop in this small metropolis. The thing that struck me the most is the fact that in such a tiny city there is so much cultural wealth, history and great food. I am an extremely curious person, and after seven years I have come to know Takayama, Shirakawa, Kanazawa and around very well. I think I differentiate myself from many guides as I am not just a guide. I am professional artist, with more than 20 years in the hospitality and customer service experience and everything I do, the stories I tell are always crafted with my way of seeing the world. So here I am, your private artist-guide ready to create with you beautiful experiences! For quotes and information do not hesitate to contact me!



Takayama, before the Edo period (1603-1868) under Tokugawa Ieyasu, was a castle city under Kanamori's warlords clan, with Samurai houses all around and the merchants houses in the old town. When Tokugawa came to Takayama, the castle was destroyed – as were the samurai proprieties, so what we have now are just the remains and a planimetry. We do however still have the old town and the temple city (Higashiyama course)! The city is divided in two parts, which have been beautifully preserved for the last 250 years. Within it we can find houses, museums, sakè breweries, incense and tea shops, souvenirs and a lot of snack bars and cafes to have a rest while admiring this wonderful place out of time.


Old town for me, equals good sake. And good sakè requires sakè breweries! There are seven places which make exquisite sake that you can enjoy during your experience here in Takayama. The oldest is here since 1623!. Among them you can find several qualities, from sweet to dry, and original varieties found only in Takayama as well! Tasting may require a fee.



The morning markets (Asa-ichii) take place every day in the morning, and are one of the “must-do“ activities and delightful places to spend some time while you’re here. There are two spots, the first is on the Miyagawa river, and the second is close to Jinjya-mae. In the markets you can find local fresh vegetables, local fruits and some snacks and antiquities as well. The markets are open in the cold season from 8 am to 12 am, and in the warm season from 7 am to 12 am.



Temples and sanctuaries are the Japanese equivalent of churches and are all around the city. Above the hills, close to the Shiroyama park and even one which is really close to the morning market spots. The most famous sanctuary is the Kokubun with a Gingko biloba three (Salisburia adianthifolia), which is 1200 years old!


The city has many different museums. Art museums, folk museums of Takayama, glass museums, historical museums, heritage houses and so on. All of these are worth seeing. Some of them charge some fees, some others are for free. The Hida Folk village is also 10 minutes far by  bus. It has Gassho style houses, and the beauty of a rural place as an outdoor museum!



The origins of the festival seems to be between the end of the sixteenth and the beginning of the seventeenth century. It take place every twice a year, on the 14th -15th of April and and 9th -10th of October. Originally it was established as a greeting to the Gods before the seeding crops, for an abundant harvest. A lot of Japanese tourists from all around the world come here to celebrate and enjoy this old and great tradition. Gorgeous floats (Yatai) pass through the old town under the sound of percussion, folk music and Karakuri (marionette) devoted to the Gods. The Takayama festival is celebrated during the day into the late evening. The experience can be really joyful and mystic at the same time!

Yatai station

© Photo Luca Facchini

Takayama Museum.JPG
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