関所の置かれた宿場町、木曽福島 / Kiso-Fukushima, an important check-point on the Nakasendo.

Kiso-Fukushima is located on the Nakasendo highway between Kyoto and Edo (Tokyo), and  was an important check-point on the road. Kiso-Fukushima is located about directly half-way on the Nakasendo. Fukushima, Kiso-town, Nagano-Prefecture, Japan. October 2015, Olympus OM-D E-M1 木曽福島は、戦国時代には領主木曽氏の城下町として、江戸時代には木曽代官山村氏の陣屋町として栄えたほか、四大関所の一つ福島関所が設けられたため、規模の大きい宿場としても発展していました。 現在、昭和2年の大火の焼失を免れた上之段地区に江戸時代末期の建造物が所々残っており、往時が偲ばれます。 長野県木曽郡木曽町福島 2015年10月撮影, Olympus OM-D E-M1

水舟のせせらぎが響く須原宿 / Suhara-juku, with murmuring water

    Suhara-juku was the thirty-ninth of the sixty-nine stations of the Nakasendō, as well as the seventh of eleven stations on the Kisoji. Of all of the post towns along the Kisoji, Suhara was the first one to be established, though originally at a different location. After the town was washed away by a major flood in 1717, it was moved to its present location. Suhara-juku, Okuwa-village, Nagano-Prefecture, Japan November 2015, Olympus OM-D E-M1 中山道39番目の宿場町須原は、木曽路の宿場の中で最も最初に開かれた宿場であると伝えられています。今では、街道筋に設けられたいくつかの水舟のせせらぎの水の音が、静寂とした集落にひびきわたっていました。 長野県木曽郡大桑村須原宿 2015年11月撮影、Olympus OM-D E-M1

”七曲がり”の宿、木曽野尻宿 / Kiso-Nojiri-juku, stands along the winding path.

Nojiri-juku was the 40th former post town on the old Nakasen-do Road (from Tokyo to Kyoto), and standed along the winding path, a kind of chicane to intercept external enemies. Nojiri-juku, Okuwa-Village, Nagano-Prefecture, Japan November2015, Olympus OM-D E-M1 山深き山間の木曽路、野尻宿は、中山道40番目の宿場で、寛政3年(1791年)に大火に遭っています。 宿場通りの長さは奈良井宿に次いでおり、「七曲り」と呼ばれ、外敵の侵入を防ぐために町筋が曲がりくねっているのが特徴です。 野尻駅前の老舗旅館、「庭田屋」は、「男はつらいよ」のワンシーンに出ているそうです。 長野県木曽郡大桑村野尻宿 2015年11月撮影 Olympus OM-D E-M1

奈良井宿の繁栄を支えた工人町、木曽平沢集落 / Kiso – Hirasawa, famous as a lacquer ware productive center.

Kiso-hirasawa flourished as a center for Japanese lacquer ware production. It was associated with Narai-juku which is along Nakasen-do highway. Narai-juku flourished both as a former post town and as a lacquer ware productive center in the Kiso Region.However Kiso-Hirasawa became more famous than Narai-juku as a producer of Kiso lacquer ware. Kiso-Hirasawa, Shiojiri-City, Nagano-Prefecture, Japan. October 2015, Olympus OM-D E-M1 塩尻市南部の山深き山間の里、木曽平沢は、中山道木曽路で「奈良井千軒」と呼ばれて大いに栄えた宿場町、奈良井宿の枝郷という位置付けの工人町として発展を始め、高地の寒冷気候が漆工に適していることもあって、江戸時代を通して中山道随一の漆器生産地として栄えることになりました。 今日においても漆器生産量は日本有数となっています。 長野県塩尻市木曽平沢地区 2015年10月撮影、Olympus OM-D E-M1

そば切り発祥の地、本山宿 / Motoyama-juku, known throughout the country for its soba noodles.

本山宿は中山道32番目の宿場で、現在は長野県塩尻市中心部の、国道バイパス脇の旧街道筋にあります。 1614年(慶長19年)、中山道のルート変更に伴い、塩尻宿・洗馬宿とともに設置されました。 今は松本市等への通勤圏の新興住宅街となっているなか、堂々たる伝統的建造物が3軒、軒を並べており、見応えがあります。 長野県塩尻市本山宿 2015年11月撮影、Olympus OM-D E-M1 Motoyama-juku was the thirty-second of the sixty-nine stations of the Nakasendō. Motoyama became a post town in 1614, when the Nakasendō’s route was changed. It became a post town at the same time as Shiojiri-juku and Seba-juku. It became known throughout the country for its soba noodles. Motoyama-juku, Shiojiri-City, Nagano-Prefecture, Japan November 2015, Olympus OM-D E-M1

木曽路の美しき宿場,奈良井宿 / Narai-juku,beautiful historic Post town

                                              The evening scenery of Narai-juku,beautiful historic post town, on the Nakasendo Road. During the Edo era (1603-1868), the Nakasendo Road was one of the main routes linking Edo (Tokyo) and Kyoto. Narai-juku was the thirty-fourth of the sixty-nine stations of the Nakasendo Road, as well as the second of eleven stations along the Kisoji ( an old trade route in the Kiso Valley that stretched from Niekawa-juku in Nagano Prefecture to Magome-juku in Gifu Prefecture ). Narai-juku had the highest elevation of all the spots along the […]

木曽妻籠宿,ありし江戸の世の姿のままに / Tsumago-juku post town, will take you back in time to the Edo Period.

                                              Tsumago-juku was the forty-second of the sixty-nine post towns on the Nakasendo, which connected Edo (present-day Tokyo) with Kyoto,during the Edo period. Prior to becoming part of the Nakasendo, it was the tenth of eleven stations along the Kisoji, a minor trade route running through the Kiso Valley. As such, it was a relatively prosperous and cosmopolitan town, with an economy based on currency. It fell into obscurity and poverty, however, after the completion of the Chuo Main Line railway, which bypassed Tsumago. In 1968, local residents […]

木曽馬籠宿,江戸の旅人の足跡を辿って / Magome-juku, post town of an ancient road, paved with stones

                        Magome-juku was the forty-third of the sixty-nine stations of the Nakasendō, an ancient road that connected Kyoto and Edo during the Edo period. It was also the last of eleven stations along the Kisoji, which was the precursor to a part of the Nakasendō, running through the Kiso Valley. As a post town, it was relatively prosperous and cosmopolitan, with a currency-based economy. It fell into obscurity and poverty, however, after the completion of the Chūō Main Line railway, which did not pass through Magome. In recent decades, it has been restored to its appearance as an Edo […]