① Kuro Kabe Square – Black Wall Square
With its location on the busy travel route between Kyoto and Tokyo, Nagahama prospered as a town and the old cityscape is still intact.Preserved buildings from the bygone days forms the present shopping arcade. The black walled old bank building is behind the present name. Take a stroll into the past and check for souvenirs found no where else.
②Discover magnificent landscapes by the lake!
The lake, deepest in this region considered as most beautiful with its deep blue waters, lush greenery and rich wildlife. Discover the beauty around the hotel and the surrounding areas. Sunset here is known as one of most beautiful in Japan.
③ Nagahama Castle & Toyoko Park – adjacent to the hotel
Toyotomi Hideyoshi, one of the most celebrated Daimyos (ruler) in Japanese history built a castle and lived here for sometime 440 years ago. The original castle was demolished by Tokugawa regime in 1615. The current Castle is a reconstruction completed in 1983 and contains a museum of samurai armor. The Park around the castle is ideal for a morning jog or for a relaxing stroll.
④ Chikubu island cruise 25-minute boat ride
Take a sightseeing boat from the jetty right in front of the hotel to the nearby Chikubu island also known as Island of mystery or Island of Gods. 6 km offshore and 2 km in conference, Chikubu island is home to a Buddhist temple and a Shinto shrine, a rare combination today but was a common feature before the Meiji Restoration 150 years ago. It is said that many generals visited the island during the warring periods.
⑤ Mount Ibuki 30-minutes by car
1377 meter high Mount Ibuki, the tallest in Shiga Prefecture belong to one of the 100 popular mountains in the country. Mount Ibuki has recorded the worlds heaviest snowfall once to the height of 11.82 m. It is also known for its fauna and flora and the magnificent views. To ascend the mountain easiest is by car through the driveway to the top. Hiking trails begin at the base of the mountain by Ibuki –Tozan guchi bus stop.
⑥ Yanmar Museum 15-minute walk
Yanmar brand is known worldwide for agriculture and marine engines was founded by Magokichi Yamaoka, a Nagahama native in 1912. The museum was built to commemorate company’s 100th anniversary. The hands on museum is very popular with children. Please refer to the Museum home page for entrance fees and other details.
(Closed for renovations till September, 2019)
⑦ Doganji Temple 30-minutes by car
A Bodhisattva statue with eleven faces known as Kannon in Japanese (Buddha of a distant future) is worshipped here at Doganji temple. The statue is a national treasure and is known as a masterpiece in Japanese sculpting history. It is also considered as Japan`s most beautiful Eleven Faced Kannon statue.
⑧ Rosa & Berry Tawada 20-minutes by car
The 13,000 square meter garden paradise comprised with original trees, plants and beautiful flowers of the season is landscaped to harmonize with the natural surroundings. In the garden restaurants buffets and barbecues are served with seasonal vegetables. A wine shop too is found inside the complex.
⑨ Annual Plum Bonsai Exhibition 5-minute walk
Hundreds of Bonsai Plum trees in full bloom are displayed at this annual event held from January 20th to March 10th at an old gallery nearby the hotel. Some trees are over 2 meters in height and some are as old as 400 years. The event draws many Bonsai enthusiast from all over Japan to Nagahama.
⑩ Nearby towns & attractions
Around the Lake Biwa, there are many areas where you could explore and experience the nature and bio-diversity, from the lake to mountains surrounding the Shiga Prefecture. Being the neighbor to Kyoto, the old capital, this area has seen many battles during Sengoku period till 1615, when finally the country settled down to peace for several centuries. Historic landmarks, temples and shrines and many other cultural assets are here to be found – only if you know where to look.
To explore, experience and enjoy that rich history and natural riches the area abounds with, an extended stay is the most recommended.