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Explore Asuka,  the birth place of Japan
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The spirit of YAMATO 
Explore heartland of Japan, Asuka 
 

 

It takes about 1 hour from Nara by Kintetsu train to get to Asuka.
At the station, if the weather allows, renting a bicycle is the best way to get around.

 

A unified nation of Japan originally emanated from Asuka.  Before Nara period, here was the center of Japan from 538 to 710, and the birthplace of imperial rule, oldest Buddhist temple, the first constitution, an official water clock, lunar calendar, and more.   You may need a good sense of imagination, however, Asuka was a very international city and introduced many foreign cultures, especially from China and Korea.   Since many powerful families had been living in Yamato region, many burial mounds have been found here.

Unlike other Japanese countrysides, either suffer from depopulation or urbanization, Asuka’s historical environment, cultural properties, and rural atmosphere are well protected both by the nation’s law and local people’s effort.   

 

When Prince Shotoku, one of the most famous and respected historical figure made the Seventeen-Article Constitution, the first female emperor Suiko was ruling the capital.  Article 1 states, "Harmony (wa(和)) is utmost importance", meaning “Cherish the harmony among people”. 

 

History of Japan is still alive in Asuka with seasonal beauties and warm-hearted local people, calling everyone to remember how international people and nature can co-exist in harmony, “wa”(和) , in peace over time and differences.  

 

Another unique feature of Asuka is its mysterious carved stone structures found in many locations.  When and why they were made? By who?  Some came up with unique ideas and names, but the mystery is still a mystery.

 

Depends on your interests and what you'd like to see, we can choose the route and sites to visit. 

 

 

 

-Okadera Temple:  Built on the hilltop in the 7th century, looking over Asuka village, this is one of the 33 sacred Kannon (Goddess of Mercy) pilgrimage site in Kansai region.  It has an interesting legend, an evil dragon is kept in a pond..  

 

-Ishibutai Burial Mound:  Japan’s largest stone tombs,  the symbol of Asuka. It has a huge stone chamber that people can go inside. 

 

-Amakashi-no-Oka Hill 

enjoy a panoramic view of Asuka village and Yamato Plain from the observation point. 

 

-Asukaniimasu Shrine

Famous for "ondamatsuri" festival, with unique sexual gestures, symbolically welcoming abundant harvest and prosperity.

There are rocks carved as male and female symbols, and many people come and pray for safe delivery of a baby,  good relationships, and finding the right partner.

This shows the native nature worship for the power of nature. 

 

-Asukadera Temple : 

This is the first Buddhist Temple in Japan. We can still see the oldest Buddha statue (Asuka Daibutsuwith unique facial expression. 

 

 -Nara Prefecture Complex of Man’yo Culture (museum): Here, you can experience the atmosphere of the ancient Asuka, where poetry collection of Man'yo shu was made.  You can see how people in Asuka era used to appreciated and received inspiration from nature to make poets. 

 Also we can enjoy beautiful Japanese paintings with theme of yamato and  Man'yo shu.

 

-Asuka Historical Museum:  

 best place to learn about Asuka's history, culture and politics.   This museum have the replicas of all the mysterious stone carvings. 

 

Without a right historical understanding and spiritual viewpoint, all these sites could be seen just objects in the past of the Japanese.  But, small village of Asuka has a lot of lessons for many of us today. …

 

 

 

* As we will be either walking or cycling around the destination, please join the tour with comfortable shoes and clothing.

There is no frequent and convenient bus service in Asuka.

 

 

 <One Day Course > 8  hours    ¥18,000 (1-3 persons)  

 

every + 1 person                            half price more.