Trip Ideas

Standard Walking Course

The perfect course for first-time visitors to Shimosuwa! You can enjoy a leisurely stroll around town in just over half a day.
This course includes the area’s must-see sightseeing spots, a stop for lunch, a break and hot springs.

total timeHalf day (about 5 hours)

  • 01

    Suwa Taisha Shimosha Harumiya

  • 02

    Ukishimasha

  • 03

    Manji no Sekibutsu Stone Buddha

  • 04

    Fushimiyatei

  • 05

    Suwa Taisha Shimosha Akimiya

  • 06

    Delicious Restaurants around Akimiya

  • 07

    Taisha Senbei, Toume Hachiman and Shintsuru

  • 08

    Public Hot Springs around Akimiya Shrine

01

Suwa Taisha Shimosha Harumiya

It is said that Harumiya shrine was the original holy spot of the Shimosha shrine, and an ancient cedar tree is enshrined here. The Heihaiden and Katahaiden halls are important cultural properties of Japan, and every year on February 1st, the deity of the Akimiya shrine is welcomed here as part of the Senzasai ceremony. To reach Ukishima Shrine and the Manji no Sekibutsu stone Buddha, use the path through the shrine grounds. Read more about Shimosha (Harumiya and Akimiya shrine) here.

Address :193 Shimosuwa Town, Suwa District

Phone :0266-27-8316

徒歩 2 minutes

02

Ukishimasha

This shrine is on the way from Harumiya to Manji no Sekibutsu.
It is said that no matter how badly the river flooded, the shrine has never been washed away. It is a subordinate shrine of Suwa Taisha Shimosha shrine and is decicated to Haraedo no Ōkami, a deity of purification.

徒歩 2 minutes

03

Manji no Sekibutsu Stone Buddha

A stone Buddha is enshrined amidst a rice paddy to the side of the Harumiya shrine. The unique shape of this two-meter-tall natural boulder with a head propped on top is exquisite and has become well known thanks to praise from prominent figures such as the artist Taro Okamoto. Read more about this stone Buddha here.

Address :133 Yashiro, Shimosuwa Town, Suwa District

徒歩 15 minutes

04

Fushimiyatei

This two-story merchant house, believed to have been built in 1864, has been restored to its original appearance. Now, it is used as a rest space for pedestrians as well as a community space for residents. We recommend you try some of the freshly made pickles that the local grandpas and grandmas have to offer!

Address :521-1 Higashimachi Shita, Shimosuwa Town, Suwa District

Phone :0266-27-3441

徒歩 5 minutes

05

Suwa Taisha Shimosha Akimiya

Akimiya shrine is one of the four shrines of Suwa Taisha and enshrined here is an ancient Japanese yew tree. The kaguraden hall with a crossed gable roof and the heihaiden hall are important cultural properties of Japan. There are many things to see here, from the 800-year-old Neiri no Sugi (slumbering cedar) to Japan’s largest bronze komainu (the lion-shaped guard dog in front of shrines). Every year at the Senzasai ceremony on August 1st, the deity returns from Harumiya. Read more about Shimosha (Harumiya and Akimiya) here.

Address :5828 Shimosuwa Town, Suwa District

Phone :0266-27-8035

徒歩 15 minutes
  • Yamanekotei

  • Yamanekotei

06

Delicious Restaurants around Akimiya

When visiting Nagano, you can’t go wrong with soba noodles! There are many soba restaurants near the Akimiya shrine. On the other hand, at  Kagura, you can enjoy traditional Japanese meals made with carefully selected ingredients all from Nagano—even down to the rice and water. Enjoy simple staples made with a master’s touch, such as Noppeijiru (vegetable soup) with Onigiri, Gyu-shigureni (beef simmered in soy sauce and ginger), Goheimochi rice cakes and curry.

徒歩 2 minutes
  • Toume Hachiman

  • Taisha Senbei

07

Taisha Senbei, Toume Hachiman and Shintsuru

Shintsuru is one of the area’s old confectionary shops established in 1873. The shio-yokan red bean jellies shaped by the master are a delight! These jellies are Suwa’s representative souvenir, first produced here.

Taisha Senbei is a type of cracker that has long been a popular souvenir from Suwa Taisha. There are a wide variety of crackers, such as oblong peanut-flavored ones, eggy castella ones and sesame-flavored ones.

Toume Hachiman is a shop that carries all manner of Suwa area souvenirs and specialties, including local sake, miso paste and soba.

徒歩 5 minutes
  • Gingetsu

  • Koyu

  • Tanga no yu

  • Kohan no yu

08

Public Hot Springs around Akimiya Shrine

This was the only hot spring town along the old Nakasendo Highway and welcomed countless travelers and literati. The hot springs here are gensen kakenagashi—meaning no added heat or recirculated water—the gold standard! These steamy waters will be sure to soothe your fatigue and sore muscles.

Check out all the onsen facilities and footbaths here.

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