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8 Popular Sightseeing Spots in Nara Prefecture, as Shown in the Video

This video, titled "Best 8 things to do in NARA & IKARUGA," was released by "Ikaruga Tourism Association Horyuji i-Center" (斑鳩町観光協会法隆寺iセンター).

Did you know that Nara Prefecture has been rapidly growing in popularity as one of the most popular tourist sites in Japan in recent years?
Nara Prefecture is the site of the Heijo-kyo Capital, which is older than Kyoto, and is dotted with many famous temples and shrines, including Horyuji Temple, Chuguji Temple, Hokiji Temple, Horinji Temple, and Takida Shrine.

In this article we'll introduce 8 popular tourist sites in Ikaruga, a popular destination in Nara.

[Nara & Ikaruga Popular Sightseeing Recommendation #1] The Area Around Todaiji Temple and Kasuga Taisha Shrine

Image of Todaiji Temple, Nara Prefecture
Photo:Todaiji Temple, Nara Prefecture

Todaiji Temple, said to be the world's oldest wooden architecture, is designated as a World Heritage Site, and the surrounding area is full of historical elegance and traditional culture.
The route from Todaiji Temple to Kasuga Taisha Shrine is popular for walks thanks to its rich natural scenery.
This can be seen from 0:14 in the video.

[Nara & Ikaruga Popular Sightseeing Recommendation #8] Traditional Sweets in Nara & Ikaruga

Image of Kuzukiri, Nara Prefecture
Photo:Kuzukiri, Nara Prefecture

Nara Prefecture's representative sweets and gourmet foods are kuzukiri and kuzumochi made with authentic Yoshino kudzu.
Enjoy traditional Japanese sweets and tea on a break during your stroll?
This can be seen from 0:32 in the video.

[Nara & Ikaruga Popular Sightseeing Recommendation #3] Tasting the Sake of Nara & Ikaruga

Image of a sake brewery
Photo:Sake brewery

Speaking of sake, you may think that many famous sake breweries are in Hokuriku, Tohoku, or around the Seto Inland Sea (瀬戸内海, Setonaikai).
Yet, Yamada Nishiki, one of the principal varieties of sake brewing rice, is actually produced in Nara Prefecture.
There are several unexplored sake breweries in Nara Prefecture that use the exquisite water of Yoshino and Yamada Nishiki to produce excellent sake.
This can be seen from 0:51 in the video.

[Nara & Ikaruga Popular Sightseeing Recommendation #4] Strolling Through Nara & Ikaruga

Image of Horyuji Temple, Nara Prefecture
Photo:Horyuji Temple, Nara Prefecture

The Ikaruga area of Nara is rich in greenery with many temples and shrines.
Check out the Townscape of Nishisato for a nice stroll.
This walking route is dotted with places of history and culture, with historical buildings and fancy Japanese-style cafes.
This can be seen from 1:10 in the video.

[Nara & Ikaruga Popular Sightseeing Recommendation #5] Ryokans in Nara & Ikaruga

Image of Hot Springs at a Ryokan
Photo:Hot Springs at Ryokan

When it comes to accommodations to fully enjoy Japanese culture, "Ryokan," Japan's traditional inns, are the perfect choice.
For traveling in the historical town of Ikaruga, Nara, Ryokan are highly recommended over hotels.
This can be seen from 1:26 in the video.

[Nara & Ikaruga Popular Sightseeing Recommendation #6] A Tea Break in Nara & Ikaruga

Image of hojicha

Hojicha is becoming more and more popular in cafes and convenience stores today, and it is said that Nara Prefecture is the birthplace of this tea.
Why not try a cup of tea to relieve yourself of fatigue while sightseeing in Nara?
This can be seen from 1:42 in the video.

[Nara & Ikaruga Popular Sightseeing Recommendation #7] Beautiful Natural Scenery in Nara & Ikaruga

One of the best things to do when sightseeing in Nara is to enjoy nature.
The Ikaruga area of Nara is blessed with rich nature in all four seasons, and the town itself is like a beautiful nature park.
Just walking around the area you can feel the history, nature, and traditional culture of Japan.
This can be seen from 2:05 in the video.

[Nara & Ikaruga Popular Sightseeing Recommendation #8] Deer in Nara & Ikaruga

Image of deer

Speaking of Nara Prefecture, you don't want to miss the deer!
Wild deer show up not only in Nara Park, but throughout the entire area.
Because of this, you can expect to bump into a deer on your way to the park as well!
You'll want to make sure that you approach them gently, as they are designated as a protected species. This can be seen from 2:23 in the video.

Summary of Popular Sightseeing Spots in Nara Prefecture

Image of Kasuga Taisha Shrine, Nara Prefecture
Photo:Kasuga Taisha Shrine, Nara Prefecture

It is said that Buddhism was introduced and took root in Japan during the Asuka/Nara periods (around 592-794 A.D.), so the areas around Ikaruga, Nara have many historical heritages, including temples and ancient tombs.

In this article, we introduced information on popular sightseeing spots in the Ikaruga, Nara area alongside the video. Which one attracted you the most?

【Official Website】Nara Horyuji Temple sightseeing. Ikaruga official travel guide

Written By
Aug. 15, 2021
児玉 勇(Yu Kodama)
A writer who loves Japan and yakitori
Experience World Heritage Sites, Traditional Japanese Culture and History, and Rich Nature in the Ancient Capital of Nara, Ikaruga! A Look at the 8 Most Popular Tourist Spots in Nara Prefecture!
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