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Goin’ Japanesque!

Inami Chokoku 2: Highlights from the City of Japan’s Best Wood Carving Technique

We’re certain you have an understanding of Inami wood carving from part 1 of this 2 part article. In part 2, we show you recommended sightseeing destinatios for Nanto in Toyama Prefecture, an area that is known for woodcarving. Take a look at the various places you’ll see why it’s called the city of woodcarving.


Yokamachi Dori Street


Yokamachi Dori is the approach to Zuisen-ji temple, the birthplace of Inami wood carving. This main street is a stone-paved path that leads from the entrance of Zuisen-ji. Many of the old buildings that line the streets are workshops of Inami wood carving. Just walking these streets, you hear sounds of the pounding wooden mallets and the fragrant smell of wood. It is sightseeing that appeals not only to the sense of sight, but to the other senses as well. 

A Wooden Telephone Booth,

All around the area you see works of wood carving. You get a sense of history from the works of woodcraft that are placed here and there. It should also be interesting to see the shop signage in the shopping area because each one is unique.




Once you walk the stone paved path of Yokamachi Dori, we encourage you to visit the Zuisen-ji temple, which is the birthplace of the Inami wood carving itself. Being as it is the birthplace, the woodwork within this temple is quite distinguished from carvings you would see in other temples or shrines. 


Inami Wood Carving Composite Hall


If you would like to see even more works of Inami wood carving, we would suggest a visit to the Inami Wood Carving Composite Hall. Within the hall, there is a display of over 200 works of Inami carving such as ranma, tsuitate and panels. If there is a piece that you like, there are some that are available for purchase as well. Don’t forget to look up at the works that are close to the ceiling.


Soyukan, Inami Kibori no Sato

木彫りの里 創遊館

Wooden Figurines of the Seven Deities of Good Luck, in the parking area,

And if you want to actually experience Inami wood carving for yourself, try visiting the Kibori no Sato (the Village of Woodworking). It is a comprehensive tourist facility where you can view works of art, dine as well as participate in a lecture from the artisans of Inami. If you do have a chance to go, make sure you get a photo in front of the wood carved seven deities.


Sightseeing in the Vicinity

In the neighboring areas of Nanto, Toyama Prefecture, there is Kanazawa of Ishikawa Prefecture to the west; there are Hida and Shirakawago of Gifu Prefecture to the south. You would be able to consecutively visit the main sightseeing destinations of the Chubu area.


The world heritage site, Gokayama is nearby too.

Related: Try the Incredible Experience of a Night’s Stay at the Gokayama World Heritage Site

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