On our way to our first stop of the day, we pass by lots of cherry blossom trees, then it’s on to the Sakurayama temple, a very large and beautiful temple.

After visiting the temple,we head to the  Miyagawa morning market. As we walk through the market, we try out the many samples available – sesame snaps, chestnut rice crackers,dried apple, chestnut in red bean jam are all good,  but salted & pickled radish not so much.

A private bus takes us to Hida no Sato, an open air museum. Here there are 30 types of traditional farmers houses relocated from around Hida. We see farming tools, sledges, utensils, as well as all the tools women used to raise silk worms. Most of the buildings have thatch roofs with others using wood shingles and rocks. The buildings date from the 1600’s arranged around a pond with a working water wheel.

Back in Takayama, we wander through the old town past shrines ,temples, picturesque bridges and waterways.

Our last and best stop of the day is to the Festival Floats Exhibition Hall. We see 4 yatai (Floats) which date to the 17th century, decorated and carved with detailed metal and wood work. Lots of intricate paint and lacquer finishes. The floats are up to 16 meters high, some have marionettes manipulated by puppeteers.

It takes 40 men to carry the wheel-less ones and they require two crews who switch out after 10 minutes. The wheeled ones (3 or 4 wheels) require 30 men pushing and pulling. If the weather is bad during the spring/autumn festival, only very small wagons go in their place which would be very disappointing.

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