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Suganuma (), one of the main attractions of Gokayama, is made up of two areas, Suganuma Village and the Gokayama Gassho no Sato. Pleasant and easy to explore on foot, the two areas are connected to each other by a tunnel, which also connects to the parking lot on the hill overlooking the village via an elevator.

Suganuma Village and nine of its gassho-zukuri farmhouses, were designated a UNESCO world heritage site along with Ainokura and Ogimachi in 1995. A beautiful place to see gassho-zukuri farmhouses, the ones here have been well preserved and a few of them have become restaurants, minshuku, and museums showing the daily life and the washi paper and saltpeter industries that sustained the region.

On the other end of the tunnel, the Gokayama Gassho no Sato has a number of traditional farmhouses which have been relocated here in order to save them from destruction. However no one lives in them these days; they are instead used by school groups who can stay overnight in the houses and experience activities from traditional Gokayama life.

Saltpeter Museum

Hours: daily 9:00 to 16:30
Closed: December 29 to January 3
Admission: 300 yen (also includes Folk Museum)
Typical Visit Duration: 15 minutes
English: Minimal
Making saltpeter, an ingredient in gunpowder, was an important industry for the region during the Edo Period. This museum has exhibits on the procedures, tools and history of the industry in Gokayama.

Folk Museum

Hours: daily 9:00 to 16:00
Closed: December 29 to January 3
Admission: 300 yen (also includes Saltpeter Museum)
Typical Visit Duration: 15 minutes
English: None
This folk museum displays tools and household items used in daily life. Some of the exhibited items include tools used for farming, raising silkworms and making washi paper.

Gassho Cottages

This collection of relocated gassho-zukuri farmhouses is now a place where school groups can stay overnight and participate in activities based on Gokayama traditional life. Although not aimed at the individual traveler, the area is open to everyone, and you are free to see the houses from the outside.

Attractions around Suganuma

Iwase-ke House

Hours: daily 9:00 to 17:00
Closed: No closing days
Admission: 300 yen
This well preserved gassho-zukuri farmhouse is the largest one of its kind in the region. The first floor has rooms which were designed to entertain visiting lords, while the spacious upper floors display tools and household items used for farming and raising silkworms.

Getting there and around

By bus

Suganuma is a stop along the bus route between Shirakawago and Shin-Takaoka Station on the JR Hokuriku Shinkansen (see timetable). The one way ride from Shirakawago to Suganuma takes 30 minutes and costs 870 yen. From Shin-Takaoka Station, it takes about 80 minutes and costs 1200 yen.

Alternatively, some buses along the bus route between Kanazawa and Shirakawago stop at the "Gokayama Suganuma" bus stop along the way (see timetable and fare details); however, it is only possible to board buses in direction of Kanazawa and get off buses in direction of Ogimachi, but not vice versa. Also, these buses do not serve Suganuma, at all, from December through March.

By car

From Ogimachi, Suganuma can be reached in about 30 minutes along National Route 156. You can cut travel time by a few minutes by taking the Tokai-Hokuriku Expressway between Shirakawago and Gokayama IC (580 yen regular expressway tolls). From Gokayama IC, Suganuma is reached in about two minutes.

How to get to and around Shirakawa-go and Gokayama

Hotels around Shirakawago & Gokayama

Top rated in Shirakawago & Gokayama
Budget:
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      Featuring free WiFi throughout the property, Shiroyamakan offers accommodation in Shirakawa, 1.4 km from Shirakawago. Free private parking is available on site. The entire property is non-smoking. Free use of bicycles is available at this ryokan and the area is popular for cycling. The nearest airport is Komatsu Airport, 47 km from the property.
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    • Shirakawago Terrace
      Budget-friendly
      Renovated in August 2017, Shirakawago Terrace, a century-old traditional Japanese wooden house, is located in Shirakawago, just a 10-minute walk away from the famous Shirakawago Ogimachi World Heritage site. Free WiFi is available throughout the entire property. The Shirakawago Ogimachi Bus Stop is a 10-minute walk from the property. The hostel is also conveniently located a 5-minute drive from the Shirakawago IC and a convenience store is located a 2-minute walk away. Chubu Centrair International Airport is a 3-hour drive from the accommodation. Featuring heating, each room at the hostel includes a private bathroom. Guests sleep in Japanese-style futon bedding on tatami (woven-straw) floors. A shared kitchen provides a place where guests of the hostel can prepare meals. An electric kettle, microwave and fridge are included. A shared lounge is also available. Parking is provided free of charge on site. Some lights are powered by on-site photovoltaic system.
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    • Onyado Yuinosho
      Luxury
      Located in Shirakawa, 200 metres from Shirakawago, Onyado Yuinosho provides accommodation with a restaurant, free private parking, a bar and a shared lounge. Guests at the 4-star property can enjoy mountain views in the rooms and access to a sauna. The ryokan features a hot spring bath and a 24-hour front desk. At the ryokan, each room is fitted with a desk, a flat-screen TV and a private bathroom. Guest rooms at Onyado Yuinosho include air conditioning and a wardrobe. Guests at the accommodation can enjoy a ? la carte or an Asian breakfast. The nearest airport is Toyama Airport, 49 km from Onyado Yuinosho.
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    • Guesthouse AntHut
      Budget-friendly
      Guest House Ant Hut is located in Shirakawa-go village, a 20-minute walk from the bus terminal Ogimachi at Shirakawa-go World Heritage Village. Free private parking is available on site. Guests can make use of the free shuttle service offered by the property or take a local bus to access the guest house. The Ant Hut has a shared kitchen furnished with essential cooking appliances. The lounge is fitted with a flat-screen TV and DVD player. The guest house features a bathroom, 2 toilets and a hairdryer. Each bed has a private luggage shelf, power outlet, reading light and a fan. Free WiFi access is available throughout the entire property. The property is situated in a quiet location within walking distance to a convenience store and 2 popular local restaurants. Guests can engage in various activities around the region such as skiing and hiking. Property staff are able to recommend things to do around the village. Complimentary seasonal drinks are offered to guests upon arrival and coffee is provided in the mornings.
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    • Shirakawago Guest House Kei
      Budget-friendly
      600 metres from Shirakawago, Shirakawago Guest House Kei is set in Shirakawa and offers rooms with free WiFi. All rooms feature a kitchen and a shared bathroom. The accommodation provides a shared kitchen and luggage storage space for guests. All guest rooms in the guest house are fitted with a coffee machine. The units will provide guests with a microwave. The nearest airport is Komatsu Airport, 46 km from the property.
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