Miyama: Beautiful Traditional Japanese Village in Kyoto

Located just about 50 kilometers north of Kyoto, lies a graceful and quaint traditional Japanese village of Miyama. This beautiful village is nestled in the mountains with over 200 traditional Japanese houses scattered around. Most of these houses are actual residences of the people there. A number of these houses that you will see in Miyama are with thatched roofing. Thatching is a roofing technique that uses grass and has been used by the ancient Japanese for a very long time. The skill of making this kind of roofing technique is called kayabuki. You can explore the area and enter some of the houses, although not every house that you see is open to the public, you can admire the structure from afar, or if you get lucky, you may find a local resident who can share some information about the history of the lovely village.

Kyoto r38 miyama-kayabuki.gfdlWhen Miyama was delegated as a national heritage in Japan, the residents held a convention to help preserve the village’s cultural wonders. Discussions such as providing subsidies to repair damaged thatched roofs, to supervise the construction of modern structures in the historic buildings and even the plan to manage the number of tourists they welcome in the village. The Miyama residents’ drive to preserve their heritage was proved to be effective since until now, the village is thriving and its beauty remains. The residents of Miyama have displayed a strong sense of responsibility and respect for nature.

Aside from observing thatch roofed houses, you can also visit Miyama Folk Art Museum where you can see exhibits of collections of ancient tools and artifacts used by the Japanese in the ancient times. Another interesting museum to visit is The Little Indigo Museum. Owned by Hiroyuki Shindo, this museum tells you a lot about the traditional dyeing artistry of ancient Japan. Plus, you will see a large collection of indigo fabric and textiles from different countries.

Miyama Kayabuki(Thatched) Museum When you are with nature, you can never resist the urge to explore its wonders. In Miyama, you can go on a hike among the mountains with the fine wilderness surrounding the village. Tourists can choose among different trails. The challenging trails on the record are the hike towards a local waterfall and the hike into the Ashiu Forest. Experience life in the countryside where time moves slowly and everyday living is simple. Visit Kyoto and unleash the wanderer in you.

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