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Fossa Magna Park

First opened as an "Itoigawa Geopark" in 1991, the Fossa Magna Park can be said to be the birthplace of the Itoigawa UNESCO Global Geopark. It features a 1 km long hillside walking trail, stretching from the entrance along Route 148 to the Shimonechi Rural Park, just inside Nechi Valley. The middle of the walkway opens up to a large rift in the cliff's face. The rocks exposed here are strikingly different in color. This alone would be an interesting curiosity, but the reason for this change in color is actually quite dramatic: This is actually the border of the Itoigawa-Shizuoka Tectonic Line, a massive fault which splits Japan in two! According to some theories, this is also one of the borders between the North American and Eurasian continental plates. It was the collision and interaction of these plates along this fault which created the Japanese Islands we see today and blessed the Itoigawa region with its ruggedly beautiful landscape and rich geological and natural diversity. The park also features a variety of informative panels explaining how the landscape here was formed. Near the exit are several examples of pillow lava, a natural formation which occurs when lava flows underwater--further evidence of Itoigawa's ancient natural history.

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Fossa Magna Museum

Itoigawa UNESCO Global Geopark's Information Center. Museum of Jade and the Fossa Magna. Opened in 1994 in Itoigawa's beautiful Miyama Park, the Fossa Magna Museum tells the story of the birth of our planet and the Japanese Islands through mineral samples collected throughout Itoigawa and features exhibits on Itoigawa's jade, limestone, the Fossa Magna, Mt. Yakeyama and more. In March 2015 the museum was reopened after extensive renovations. Visit us and discover Itoigawa's exciting Geological Story, over 500 million years in the making! ●Fossa Magna Museum ・General (18 and older): 500 yen ・Under 18: Free ●Joint Admission to Chojagahara Archaeological Museum (5 min walk from Fossa Magna Museum) ・General (18 and older): 600 yen ・Under 18: Free ※100 yen discount to groups of 20 or more ※Free admission for guests with disabilities ●Fossil Valley Activity ・300 yen for 2 hours ・Includes equipment rental ・Limit of five fossils per person ・Closed in Winter Season For more information, visit the museum's homepage at https://fmm.geo-itoigawa.com/en/

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Chojagahara Archaeological Museum

At the Center of the World's Oldest Jadeworking Culture The Chojagahara Archaeological Site was the site of a number of massive settlements over 5,000 to 3,500 years ago. The people who lived in these settlements collected jade from the nearby rivers and coast. Recognizing its durability and beauty, they used it in the crafting of tools and jewelry, eventually devloping into the first example of jadeworking known in the world. Today, the Chojagahara Archaeological Site is recognized as one of the largest neolithic sites in Japan's Hokuriku Region and is registered as a National Historic Site of Japan. The Chojagahara Archaeological Site is massive and it is estimated that not even 10% has been unearthed. A few dwellings have been reconstructed as an archaeological park nearby, while the Chojagahara Archaeological Museum houses a massive collection of pottery, beads and other historical artifacts unearthed at the site and similar sites around Itoigawa. ◆Chojagahara Archaeological Museum  Adults: 300yen  Joint Admission with Fossa Magna Museum: 600yen  100yen discount for groups of 20 or more  Children (18 and under): Free ◆Chojagahara Archaeological Park   Free

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Kubiki Cycling Road

The Kubiki Cycling Road is a 33 km built atop the remains of the Old Hokuriku Railroad, which was moved into the mountains in the 1960s. The road winds along the coast of the Sea of Japan passing through fishing communities and pastoral scenery, dotted with shrines, temples and more. Rental bicycles are available at Itoigawa Station and Marine Dream Nou.

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Tanimura Art Museum & Gyokusuien Gardens

Buddhist Artwork, Traditional Japanese Gardens & Modern Architecture The Gyokusuien Gardens opened in 1981. Designed by acclaimed landscape architect Kinsaku Nakane, the gardens use the natural background to evoke a scene of two rivers flowing from the mountains in a serene, secluded setting. Enjoy viewing the gardens from the adjoining tea house or the hillside pavilion. Beside the gardens, the Tanimura Art Museum opened in 1983. The museum features the Buddhist artwork of wood sculptor Seiko Sawada who is considered by many to be Japan's greatest modern sculptor of Buddhist artwork. Even the museum itself is a masterpiece of modern architecture designed by renowned architect Togo Murano. It was among the last buildings he designed before his passing and is considered a perfect example of Murano's personal style of Brutalist architecture. Travel along the corridor on a pilgrimage from the profane to the sacred and cleanse your mind and soul in this truly unique museum. ◆Tanimura Art Museum & Gyokusuien Gardens  Adults: 500yen  18 and under: 300yen ◆Joint Admission with Hisuien Gardens  Adults: 800yen  18 and under: 500yen

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Nou Hakusan Shrine

Maritime Shrine with 2000 Years of History While its exact date of founding is lost to history, shrine records state that Nou Hakusan Shrine was founded over 2000 years ago during the reign of Emperor Sujin, 10th emperor of Japan. The current main sanctuary (honden) of Hakusan Shrine was built in 1515 and is a Nationally Registered Important Cultural Property. The shrine contains a number of relics of Hakusan Worship and is a bridge to the Nou Region's ancient history. The Itsukushima Shrine on nearby Benten Rock is considered a satellite shrine of Hakusan. Despite being dedicated to Shinto worship, the shrine also houses several important Buddhist relics, a remnant of the time when the lines between these two religions were blurred. The nearby Nou Museum of History and Folklore features a collection of tools and other artifacts from Nou's history. Sacred Water of Nou Hakusan Shrine Located behind the large worship hall is a sacred spring which flows from Mt. Oyama. This water is particularly delicious and is a popular source of drinking water for the locals. Spring Grand Festival The shrine's largest festival is held every year on April 24th. It features bugaku court dancing passed down over the centuries. This performance is unique to Hakusan Shrine and is registered as a National Cultural Property.

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Itoigawa Wasabi Garden

One of the largest wasabi farms along the Sea of Japan! You can buy the highest grade of wasabi at our shop. We grow 'mazuma' wasabi, the highest grade of wasabi available, using our special patented greenhouse system. We process and package the wasabi onsite, both as fresh wasabi and in a variety of products. Stop by our shop and check out our full line of products! From early summer until autumn, we also sell Guernsey milk ice cream which you can enjoy with fresh-grated wasabi for a truly exquisite taste experience. We also sell Makochan Kelp udon noodles, made by the students at the local Kaiyo High School. They go great with our wasabi!

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För Ägg Sweet

Sweets shop run by an egg farm För Ägg is a small sweets shop run by a local egg farm. We use only our "Pure Egg" brand eggs. These eggs are popular for their clean, exceptionally fresh taste. To best bring out the flavor of our Pure Egg brand eggs, we use only the finest ingredients in our sweets. We are most proud of our chiffon cakes, puddings and roll cakes. Stop by and give them a try! ■Major credit cards accepted

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Renge Hot Springs

Hidden baths above the clouds at a height of 1,475 meters! The Renge Hot Springs, located halfway up the peak of Mt. Korenge far above Itoigawa, are without a doubt the wildest hot springs you will find! Pay at the lodge, then hike a few minutes to the hot spring area, where four outdoor baths await you to bathe in nature's majesty! These hot springs are located in the Chubu Sangaku National Park, and a number of hiking trails and campsites are available nearby, making it worth spending the night! ※Note: The outdoor baths at Renge Hot Springs are mixed gender. Because of this, swimwear is allowed for shy guests, but it's certainly not required. ※Note: Due to the nature of Renge Hot Springs, there are no changing areas or locker rooms for the outdoor baths. Please undress at the side of the bath and keep valuables close at hand. The 2020 Renge Bus Line will operate from July 11 until October 12. For more information, click here.

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Roadside Station – Marine Dream Nou

Located in between Itoigawa's two largest fishing harbors, Marine Dream Nou is the place to go to enjoy the freshest seafood from the Sea of Japan! If you love seafood, then you have to stop here! At Crab Market Alley (Kaniya Yokochō), local crab boats line up to sell their freshly caught crabs. Nou is particularly famous for the benizuwai crab, a variety of snow crab found in abundance in the Sea of Japan. Living at depths of up to 800 m below the sea, these bright red crabs can be caught and enjoyed throughout the year, making them especially popular as a summer treat! ※In order to prevent overexploitation, crab fishing is restricted during January and February. Next to Crab Market Alley is a large seafood market, featuring a wide variety of freshly caught seasonal fish and other marine produce. During the summer, enjoy freshly grilled seafood, prepared right in the market! If you're looking for a delicious seafood meal, then step into one of the four seafood restaurants for a lunch you won't forget! From hearty crab ramen to gourmet sashimi platters, if you like seafood then you definitely won't leave hungry! Make sure to stop by the gift shop for locally made produce and gifts or ask about more of the amazing places to visit in the Nou Region at the on-site Tourist Information Corner.

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