Towada Shrine: A Holy Site Deep in the Forest by the Lake

Situated by Lake Towada ​(十和田湖 Towada­ko) w​hich holds it’s water in the crater of a dormant volcano; hidden in it’s own sanctuary is a Shinto shrine recognized as a holy place in Aomori Prefecture. Once you enter from the village and pass the Tori (gate of entrance) the path to Towada Jinja Shrine is called "Suginami", a shortened version of the word from the Edo period “Suginamiki”, which, when translated means "avenue of Cedars". The trees are tall, sturdy and magnificent!

The Gem of Aomori Prefecture: The Oirase Gorge

As summer officially begins mid-July here in Aomori Prefecture -- located in Tohoku, the most northern region on the mainland of Japan -- it is finally the time to shake off the spring chill as we enter into August’s hot and humid temperatures. Where do the locals recommend you visit? The Oirase Gorge of course!

Tachi Neputa: Gigantically Tall Tohoku Floats

The Nebuta/Neputa festivals of Aomori Prefecture are unique to the area. There are at least four major festivals and a slew of smaller ones which have the trademark illuminated floats made of washi (harden Japanese paper) with a bamboo frame depicting colorful scenes from Chinese and Japanese history and legends.

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