Toyama is a prefecture belong to the Chubu region while bordering the Sea of Japan. It boasts the largest artificial dam called Kurobe Dam, which is located deep in a sacred forest. Famous regional dish is called Masunosushi, which you can try as Ekiben, a boxed meal sold at railway stations. Besides that, there are enjoyable tourist attractions that fascinates visitors with a plenty of nature. Let’s get into the places to visit in Toyama!
1. Kurobe Dam
Located in Tateyama-cho in the west part of Toyama prefecture, Kurobe Dam is an arc dam which is the tallest dam in Japan. It stands 186 meters tall, and can store enormous amount of water. It has a function as a hydropower plant to generate electricity with water, and has been one of the most popular tourist attractions in Toyama with a number of other exciting spots around. It is geographically surrounded by giant mountains, and visitors can walk around the area rich in nature while enjoying the stunning view of the huge dam! From June to October, water in the dam is deliberately discharged to entertain tourists. Cursing ship also operates in the Kurobe lake, which is an artificial lake created by the construction of the dam.
2. Kuroge Gorge Railway
Kurobe Gorge Railway refers to a trolley running for about 20km through the Kurobe gorge from Unazuki to Keyakidaira station. It takes passengers to the famous tourist attractions and scenic spots around the area, and could be an adventurous experience for all generations! Passengers can have an exciting ride on three different types of trolley. The most popular one is an orange one which has no windows, so that passengers can directly feel the pleasant wind and fresh air in the sacred gorge in a deep forest!
Opening Hours 9am－5pm
Admission ※Varies depending on season & destination
Gokayama is a small, peaceful village situated in the southwestern part of Toyama prefecture. The entire village is full of Japanese traditional buildings with a unique architectural style called gassho-zukuri, which makes it look similar to the famous tourist spot called Shirakawa-go in Gifu prefecture. They were both designated as UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1995. The historical houses are said to be built centuries ago, and the oldest one is 400-year-old! The impressive scenery has been preserved with significant effort and support with local people. There are a number of memorable experiences such as a guide tour and camp fire in abundant nature. In addition, some houses are currently used as a guest house which offers accommodation for tourists! This is exactly where you can immerse yourself into a “true Japan”.
4. Amaharashi Beach (Amaharashi Coast)
Amaharashi Beach is a scenic spot which offers a stunning view of the Tateyama mountain range over the Toyama bay. It is located within the Noto Peninsula Quasi-National Park in Takaoka city, and officially selected as one of the Japan’s best 100 beaches. Several weather conditions need to be met in order to create the breathtaking view, and it is recommendable to visit there in winter to get a chance to see the collaboration of crystal sea and beautiful mountains covered with snow! There is also a famous rock named Yoshitsune Rock, which is based on an old story on a famous warrior Minamotono Yoshitsune. He hid under the rock wishing the rain to stop soon on his way heading to the Tohoku region while escaping from pursuers.
5. Toyama Glass Art Museum
Toyama Glass Art Museum is a modern museum opened in 2015. It is located in a complex building called Toyama Kirari, which was designed by a world-famous architect Kuma Kengo. The shiny appearance and façade of the building represents the beauty of the Tateyama mountain range, an iconic scenery spot in Toyama prefecture. The museum boasts a large collection of glass art exhibits, and the colorful glass works are impressive and fascinate visitors. It offers an artistic experience for tourist for an affordable price! There is also a souvenir shop selling original merchandise. Visitors can have a light meal at a cozy cafe as well.
Opening Hours 9:30am－6pm
Admission￥200 (adults/ university students)
※applicable only for permanent exhibition
6. Himi Banya-gai
Himi Banya-gai is a complex facility located near the Himi Fishing Port. It is comprised of harbor market packed with local vendors and a hot spring facility. Visitors can try perfect and best-quality fresh seafood directly delivered from the sea. For those who prefer something other than fish, there are restaurants offering other local specialty such as Himi Beef. Relaxing natural hot spring flows directly from the source, and it boasts a variety of health benefits! Small park is also available to observe a stunning view of the Tateyama Mountain Range!
Opening Hours ※Varies for each shop
Admission (For Hot spring facility)￥650 (adults)
7. Takaoka Daibutsu (The Great Buddha of Takaoka)
Takaoka Daibutsu (also often refereed as “The Great Buddha of Takaoka”) is a giant Buddhist Statue located in Takaoka city. It is claimed one of the three great Buddhist statues along with those in Kamakura and Nara in Japan. The original one was made from wood, and unfortunately burn down by fire in 1900. The construction of the currant one started in 1933, ended up spending 30 years until its completion. Since its establishment, it has been loved by local people as an iconic structure in the city. It is officially designated as Tangible Cultural Property by the city as well. Visitors can enter the base of the statue where the head of the previous statue is placed peacefully.
Opening Hours 6amー6pm
8. Toyama Castle Ruin Park
Toyama Castle Ruin Park is a public park located at the heart of Toyama city. There are reconstructed castle and moat which were originally built as a part of the Toyama castle in 1543. The original castle was abandoned in 1871, and visitors can see few remains nowadays. In spite of the convenient location in a busy area, this park is rich in nature and also known as a famous cherry blossom viewing spot in spring. The main tower of the castle is currently used as a museum which displays valuable exhibits to introduce the history of the Toyama castle.
Opening Hours(Folk Museum) 9amー5pm
Admission (Folk Museum)￥210 (adults) Free (high school students and under)
Where to stay in Toyama
River Retreat Garaku – Beautiful hotel surrounded by nature, the new wing was designed by famous architect Hiroshi Naito
Hotel Morinokaze Tateyama – Spacious rooms of the choice of western or Japanese style, fabulous onsen with the mountain view
Entaijiso – Japanese style Ryokan surrounded by breathtaking mountains and river, offering indoor and outdoor onsen
Don’t forget to check out our private tour!
If you need some help to organize your trip to Toyama, you should definitely check out our private tour including English guide. We’re glad to help you make your trip to Toyama a safe, comfortable, and unforgettable memory!
1. Kanazawa 1–Day Highlight Private Walking Tour (8 Hours)
Kanazawa is a prefectural capital of Ishikawa prefecture also located in the Hokuriku Region along with Toyama. Don’t miss our enjoyable private tour in Kanazawa before you personally visit tourist spots in Toyama!
2. Kanazawa Omicho Market and Higashichayagai District Food Tour
Another Kanazawa tour is also available to enjoy local foods at a lively market and visit a historical district full of Japanese traditional houses.
There are still other tourist spots that we couldn’t mention above in Toyama. Please explore the area on your own and discover new aspects of the city!
Other places to visit in Chubu Area
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