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.

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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:


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


  • Drive 1 km west off Shin-Midosuji on Route 423
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Post Author: Carrie Kellenberger

I'm a chronically ill Canadian who has been living in Asia since 2003. I moved from China to Taiwan in 2006. I'm an experienced businesswoman and have worked in many leadership positions in Asia. In addition to my own work, I've been writing professionally about Asia, travel and health advocacy since 2007, providing regular content to publishing companies and travel publications in Asia and North America. I started writing about my health journey in 2009 after being diagnosed with Ankylosing Spondylitis. In 2014, I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and ME/CFS, which came with other massive health issues. These diagnoses were the start of my journey as a health advocate and patient leader. Since then, My Several Worlds has been recognized worldwide as a top site for AS, fibromyalgia, and chronic illness by WEGO Health and Healthline.

18 thoughts on “Osaka’s Open-Air Museum of Old Japanese Farm Houses

    Todd Alperovitz

    (January 6, 2008 - 10:49 pm)

    I wish I spent a little more time in Osaka during my trip, the pics look great! I want to go right now!


    (January 6, 2008 - 11:45 pm)

    Beautiful photos, Carrie! People come everyday to my blog looking for “Japanese windmills” (search engine term). I will send them here, LOL.


    (January 7, 2008 - 5:05 am)

    Beautiful place.


    (January 7, 2008 - 5:25 pm)

    Looks charming! We have a similar open air museum here in Belgium, called 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?


    (January 8, 2008 - 5:05 am)

    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 !


    (January 8, 2008 - 5:16 am)

    The farmhouses look lovely.


    (January 8, 2008 - 6:13 pm)


    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.


    (January 8, 2008 - 6:19 pm)

    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.


    (January 8, 2008 - 6:22 pm)

    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.


    (January 9, 2008 - 4:13 pm)

    I just asked since that’s how I found my way to your blog 🙂


    (January 10, 2008 - 3:52 am)

    Carrie: Your macro of the flower is stunning. Great, vibrant color. I wish I could take a macro that looked half as good.


    (January 9, 2008 - 9:27 pm)


    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!


    (January 10, 2008 - 8:42 am)

    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.


    (January 10, 2008 - 8:00 pm)

    Amazing palce….doesn’t even semm real!!


    (January 12, 2008 - 3:11 am)

    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 🙂 ).

    New Spot « w3|y!49™

    (May 31, 2008 - 1:04 pm)

    […] 31 May, 2008 by svnue Open Air Museum of Old Japanese Farm Houses (1)(2)(3) […]

    Travel Packages India

    (January 23, 2009 - 10:23 am)

    So very beautiful pictures.

    And i got to say I have that flower in my garden here, not the color that you have taken the snap of but a vibrant yellow color.

    Travel India

    (March 9, 2009 - 10:30 am)

    The pics are awesome.

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