Obuse town is located 10 km away, towards the northeast from the central Nagano city. This town was developed due to transporting businesses using Shinano River. Moreover, since Edo time period, many famous people showed their interest towards this town. For instance, Ganshoin temple had connections with Fukushima Masanori, Hokusai and Kobayashi Issa.
Famous artists such as Takai Kouzan and Hokusai lived in Obuse town. Recently, traditional Japanese painting artist Nakajima Chinami was born here. There are many museums in this town: HOKUSAI MUSEUM, Takai Kouzan memorial museum and Obuse Museum Nakajima Chinami Hall.
This town is great for learning about art and history. Obuse town is also known for producing chestnuts; their chestnuts tree crafts are also very popular.
- 1. Spot Ranking
- 5th Obuse Museum Nakajima Chinami Hall
- 4th Kurino Komichi
- 3rd Iwamatsu Institute
- 2nd Takai Kozan Museum
- 1st Hokusai Museum
- 2. Getting in
- 3. Other Area List
1. Spot Ranking in Obuse area
5th. Obuse Museum Nakajima Chinami Hall
Obuse Museum Nakajima Chinami Hall was open in 1992 as a new center for art. Nakajima Chinami is a Japanese painting artist who were born in the town. His cherry tree and Moutan peony paintings are well known but his portrait work is getting his lifework.
At Nakajima Chinami Hall, visitors are able to see his work. Moreover, visitors are able to see and learn about Japanese traditional festival stalls. They also host many events and exhibitions throughout the year.
The opening time is 9:00~17:00（7th &8th month until 18:00) closed on 12.31. The price is 500 yen.
The access is from Obuse station, it would be about 12 min walk. There tourist circular bus service from the station; however, it won’t run during January and February.
4th. Kurino Komichi
Kurino Komichi was made as a part of town’s re-development project from 1980 to 1987. This special path was made possible without any public fund. Local people came together to work on this innovative rejuvenation project that is called Obuse style.
This path was constructed using chestnut trees; on the side of the path, one chestnut tree was replanted from a chestnut farm owned by the famous Japanese sweet shop Obusedo. Takai Kouzan memorial museum is also on this path.
From Obuse station, it would be about 7 min walk.
3rd. Iwamatsu Institute
Ganshoin has a great connections with three famous people: Fukushima Masanori, Hokusai and Kobayashi Issa. Fukushima Masanori was the castle owner of Hiroshima Castle in Edo time period. Later, he was sent to Nagano prefecture. He changed Ganshoin to Bosatsu Temple and he studied Buddhism seriously.
The world famous Katsushika Hokusai is best known as Edo time period author of the woodblock print; he painted the ceiling of the main building. The painting is about Chinese phoenix. When he painted this, he was about 88-89 years old! Famous Japanese poet Kobayashi Issa wrote a Haiku poem here “Yase kaeru, makeruna Issa koko ni ari” when he saw frogs’ flight at this temple.
The opening time is 9:00~17:00. But please check their website before a visit; there are about 10 days a year, the temple would be closed. The price is 300 yen.
From Obuse station, it would be about 25 min by shuttle bus.
2nd. Takai Kozan Museum
Takai Kouzan memorial museum exhibits his work from Edo to Meiji time period. He was born in a rich merchant family in Obuse town. He did not have any interest in his family business but he was very keen about drawing. He draw Detailed Monster which is well-known presently. He became obsessed with famous Katsushika Hokusai, he let Hokusai stay at his gorgeous mansion. He also learnt painting from Hokusai.
At Takai Kouzan memorial museum, visitors are able to learn about their friendship through its display. Takai Kouzan memorial museum kept its original structure from the same time period as theirs. Visitors can feel the authentic vibe from the building and the exhibition.
The opening time is 9:00~17:00（7th &8th month until 18:00）closed on 12.31 . The price is 300 yen.
From Obuse station, it would be about 7 min walk.
1st. Hokusai Museum
Katsushika Hokusai is famous for his work Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji. At Hokusai Museum, visitors are able to see many of his work. He was born in Edo, but he visited Obuse when he was 83 years old for his first time.
After that, he frequently visited here, then he started his friendship with Takai Kouzan. He continue his painting work at Takai Kouzan’s mansion. He was also into ceiling painting as people know one in Ganshoin. There are two of his festival stalls’ ceiling paintings at this museum.
One is about dragon and Chinese phoenix, the other one is about a man and a woman. The opening time is 9:00~17:00, closed on 12.31. The price is 1,000 yen.
From Obuse station, it would be about 12 min walk.
2. Getting From Nagano station to Obuse station
From JR Nagano station, take Nagano Electric Railway Co Nagano Line towards Shinshū-Nakano, get off at Obuse station. The duration is 30 min. and price is 670 yen.
From JR Nagano station, take Nagano Electric Railway Co Snow Monkey limited express services towards Yudanaka. The duration is 30 min. The price is 770 yen.
Getting to Nagano Station from Tokyo Station
3. Other Area List
Tateshina – Venus Line
Lake Suwa, Kami-Suwa Onsen and Shimo-Suwa Onsen