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Home - Travel - Sightseeing Guide - Chubu
Kiso Valley 
# 66   of 175 destinations
in our travel guide

jump to:   access  -  hotels  -  ratings  -  links

Tsumago at Dusk

Notice
A landslide damaged the railway tracks of the JR Chuo Line in the Kiso Valley on July 10, 2014. As a result, trains are currently not operating between Sakashita and Nojiri Stations, affecting trains along the Kiso Valley and limited express trains between Nagoya and Nagano. It is expected that repair works will take at least one month. A substitute bus service between Sakashita and Nojiri started on July 14 (see timetable).

  as of July 26, 2014

The Kiso Valley is located in Nagano Prefecture, and runs alongside the mountains of the Central Alps. An ancient 70 km trade route called the Kisoji was developed along the valley and served as a very important means of commerce in the area.

The Kisoji became even more important from the beginning of the Edo Period, when it was amalgamated with other routes in the formation of the 500 km long Nakasendo. The Nakasendo ("path through mountains") was one of the two means of transportation between Edo and Kyoto. It contrasted with the other principal transportation route of the time, the Tokaido, which ran along the sea shore.

Because of restrictions by the shogunate, travelers were almost always forced to make their trips on foot. As a result, "post towns" developed every few kilometers to provide travelers with places to rest, eat, and find nightly accommodation during their arduous journey.

Along the Kiso Valley, a few post towns, particularly Magome, Tsumago and Narai, have been preserved to look as they did when they served travelers of the Nakasendo. Visitors are able to enjoy the stone paths and wooden buildings of a bygone era.

Any Questions? Ask them in our question forum.

Attractions
 1  Tsumago
The valley's best preserved post town.
User rating: 90/100 (117 votes)
Visited by: 203 users
 2  Nakasendo Hiking
Attractive walk along the old Nakasendo.
User rating: 90/100 (87 votes)
Visited by: 131 users
 3  Magome
Beautifully preserved post town.
User rating: 87/100 (115 votes)
Visited by: 203 users
 4  Narai
The richest of the former post towns.
User rating: 84/100 (32 votes)
Visited by: 68 users
 5  Hirasawa
Town famous for lacquer ware.
User rating: 70/100 (6 votes)
Visited by: 17 users
 

Access and Orientation
Access and Orientation
How to get to and around Kiso Valley.

About transportation in Japan

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Hotels and Ryokan
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Recommended Hotels around kiso - with lowest rates by selected hotel reservation websites
Fujioto
Friendly, traditional inn with good location in Tsumago. By many considered the best in town.
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Matsushiroya
Traditional inn in the very heart of Tsumago.
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User Ratings
Ratings for Kiso Valley:
japan-guide.com Rating:
  best of Japan  
User Rating (by 168 users):
89/100
  recommended

Best rated destinations (out of 160):
18.  Sanriku Coast   90/100
19.  Yamadera   90/100
20.  Shiretoko   90/100
21.  Dewa Sanzan   89/100
22.  Hiroshima   89/100
23.  Kiso Valley   89/100
24.  Rishiri and Rebun   88/100
25.  Kurokawa Onsen   88/100
26.  Naoshima   87/100
27.  Takayama   87/100
Most visited destinations (out of 175):
61.  Iwakuni   379
62.  Amanohashidate   375
63.  Akan National Park   369
64.  Abashiri   365
65.  Kinugawa Onsen   362
66.  Kiso Valley   331
67.  Saitama   330
68.  Kamikochi   327
69.  Hagi   317
70.  Tokushima   316

User Feedback
We strive to keep japan-guide.com up-to-date and accurate, and are always looking for ways to improve the user experience. If you have any updates, suggestions, corrections or opinions, please let us know:

Japanese Links
Magome
Official website.
Tsumago
Official website.
Narai
Official website.

Online Reservations
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Related Pages
Travel
Sightseeing
Chubu Region
Nagano Prefecture

Magome
Tsumago
Narai
Magome-Tsumago Trail
Kiso Lacquer

Bus timetable: Magome and Tsumago
Kiso: Access and Orientation

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