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Nagoya Sights and Landmarks Guide, Japan

For many people visiting Japan, Nagoya is only a bullet train stop on the way to Tokyo, Osaka, or other more touristy cities. Nagoya is indeed more of an industrial metropolis than a tourist attraction, but you don’t have to be a fan of Toyota, Honda or Mitsubishi cars to enjoy a few days of wandering around Nagoya. Despite its status as a technological capital, Nagoya has played an important part in Japanese history. Some of the most important people in the history of the country hailed from Nagoya: Oda Nobunaga, Toyotomi Hideyoshi and Tokugawa Ieyasu. Many of the city’s most interesting sights are deeply rooted in history, there are plenty of amazing museums and countless traditional shrines that you can visit in Nagoya. Find out more about what Nagoya has to offer in this short Nagoya Sights Guide.

Nagoya Sights - Castles and Shrines

Nagoya Castle was built in 1610 by Tokugawa Ieyasu on the site of a previously abandoned castle. The castle was destroyed during World War II, and what you can see today is a concrete replica of the original building. The most prominent features of the castle are the golden tiger-headed dolphins on the roof, symbols of the feudal lords of Japan. Atsuta Shrine hosts over 4000 historical artifacts on its grounds, among which the famous Kusanagi no mitsurugi sword. The shrine organizes over 70 festivals every year, so if you’re in luck you can take part.

Nittaiji Temple has a beautiful pagoda and extensive gardens. This Nagoya Sights Guide recommends that you visit Koshoji Temple during the 1000 Lantern Festival, an impressive annual event. Toganji Temple dates back to the 16th century and has a rather beautiful statue of Buddha. Interestingly enough, the shrine hosts a temple dedicated to the Hindu goddess Saraswati. Last but not least, don’t forget to visit Arako Kannon Temple, the oldest building in Nagoya, dating back to the early 8th century.

Nagoya Sights - Parks and Museums

If you’re an automobile fan, visit the Toyota Commemorative Museum of Industry and Technology that offers an insight into the long history of one of the world’s leading car manufacturing corporations. For more cars, this time from different eras and different countries, go to Toyota Automobile Museum.

Nagoya City Art Museum displays a few pieces by internationally known artists such as Modigliani and Utrillo, as well as works by famous Japanese artists. If you’d like to take a refreshing walk outside, spend a few hours in Meijo Park, the largest park in Nagoya, not far from Nagoya Castle.

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