CULTURAL TRAVEL,  Japan

Osaka’s Open-Air Museum of Old Japanese Farm Houses

Osaka is a colorful city with a little something for everyone. It also boasts one of the most charming places I’ve ever been to in all my travels. This was my choice for sightseeing in Osaka and we thoroughly enjoyed spending our afternoon strolling through this gorgeous park. I highly recommend it to anyone interested in traditional Japanese culture and architecture.

The Osaka Open-Air Museum of Old Japanese Farm Houses showcases 12 original old farm houses and structures brought from different rural parts of the country. They were reconstructed in a natural outdoor park setting located in Hattori-Ryokuchi Park. The houses were all built during the Edo period (1700-1900) and represent the styles and folk customs which were characteristic of each area. Furniture and tools are also on display. Modern visitors can’t help but wonder what life must have been like back then, when people lived in harmony with their natural surroundings.

The museum is open from 9:30 am to 5:00pm. Admission is 500 Yen per person.

The style of this house is called “Gassho” because its steep roof looks like two hands pressed together in prayer. This is the largest of the farmhouses in the park. This residence used to house over 20 residents. The Hida-Shirakawa village was well known for its unique system of housing large families.

Farmhouse from Shirakawa, Gifu

Farmhouse from Shirakawa, Gifu

Gifu Farmhouse and Grounds

Orange Blossom

Farmhouse from Settse-Nose, Osaka

Farmhouse from Settsu-Nose, Osaka

This farm house was built in the early years of the Edo period. The interior is divided into two areas, one of which has an earthen floor for cooking.

Farmhouse from Totsukawa, Nara

Farmhouse from Totsukawa, Nara

The roof of this house is thatched with bark. It also has wooden boards to protect it from heavy rain and wind. The style of this farm house is narrow because the village was located in a valley.

Chashitsu from Kitakawathi, Osaka

Chashitsu from Kitakawathi, Osaka. A room for ceremonial tea.

This L-shaped farmhouse combines a dwelling and a stable. This was especially convenient for keeping horses in the winter because the inhabitants could see the stable across the yard from their living quarters.

Farmhouse from Nambu, Iwate

Farmhouse from Nambu, Iwate

Before WWII, this windmill was used to pump water in the Sakai district of Osaka.

Windmill from Sakai, Osaka

Windmill from Sakai, Osaka

How to get there:

Rail

  • – 15 minute walk from Ryokuchi-Koen Station on the Kita-Osaka Railway
  • – 30 minute walk from Sone station on the Hankyu Railway

Car

  • Drive 1 km west off Shin-Midosuji on Route 423

I'm a chronically ill Canadian who has been living in Taiwan since 2006. I'm a bit of a jack of all trades! I love art, gardening, flower arranging, reading (that's an understatement if you've seen my GoodReads profile), and snuggling with my cats. Animal videos make me cry. I hate cooking. Nothing makes me happier than seeing my garden bloom! Learning about new cultures and exploring the world has been my thing since I started traveling at age 19. A self-professed autodidact, I can speak comfortably on many different subjects and hold a special place in my heart for science, technology, law, health and medicine, and history. You can find me nerding out at home most of the time due to being chronically ill and housebound. If I'm not engaged in one of the activities listed above, I'm probably building websites. Check my About page under Carrie Kellenberger to learn why I'm taking you on this journey with me through My Several Worlds. I can't wait to get to know you better!

18 Comments

  • Kim

    Looks charming! We have a similar open air museum here in Belgium, called Bokrijk (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bokrijk), with 140 historical (reconstructed) buildings and farmhouses. And yes, a windmill :).
    My ex-boyfriend’s father used to be the village’s chocolatier here. He had many Japanese visitors :). And of course every elementary school in Belgium comes here on a schooltrip.

    PS Do you also post these entries on 43places?

  • jeff

    Thank you one more time Carrie for these pictures (always great !). I have visited a similar place near Tokyo last summer, called Nihon Minkaen. It’s an open-air folk house museum. It showcases 23 different authentic houses, also brought from different parts of Japan. A really beautiful place set in the middle of a huge park. If anyone is interested : 7-1-1 Masugata, Tama Ku, Kawasaki City (Kanagawa Prefecture) – Tel : 044(922)2181. 500 yens per adults too !

  • globetrotteri

    Todd,

    The great thing about living in Taiwan is being so close to all these great destinations. Osaka is a terrific city. We were completely enamored by everything it had to offer. We had time to sleep and were on the go 24/7 for the rest of our time there.

    Originally, John and I had decided on staying in Kyoto, but the average rate for rooms per night was ridiculous. We decided to make Osaka our home base and we ventured out by car on day trips to other areas. I don’t think we could have arranged things any better.

  • globetrotteri

    Fighting Windmills,

    Windmills are hard to beat, no matter where you are. They’re so rustic and charming. The first one I glimpsed in Japan was set in the middle of a green field. It was beautiful in its simplicity. I was pleased to discover another one in the heart of the city.

  • globetrotteri

    Kim and Jeff,

    Thanks very much for the links. I’m always looking for cool new places to visit. I find open-air museums brilliant. I love the feeling of being transported back in time while you’re in the middle of an ultra-modern cityscape.

    I used to post on 43places, but I don’t use the site anymore. My profile is still there, but the last time I posted was in May or June. You can find my profile under globetrotteri.

  • globetrotteri

    Kim,

    Ah-hah! I’ve been trying to figure out how you found My Several Worlds. I think I asked you in a previous comment but you never responded. What’s your screen name on 43things? I’ll have to come and say hello!

  • globetrotteri

    Thanks Stevo,

    I had to take almost a dozen photos to get this shot with my little Canon point-and-shoot. I’m suffering from severe camera envy at the moment, but the wedding comes first. Just when I think I’ve had enough of it, I take a photo like this and it doesn’t seem so bad.

  • Kim

    I read one of your posts and clicked through to your profile to see if there were more, and thus found the link to your blog. That was a couple of months ago, it took me some time to catch up with your archives. I’m listed as Ninja_neko (and not very good at writing 🙂 ).

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