Enjoy attractive walk through scenic old towns of Kiso Valley
One of the main route to travel between Kyoto and Edo in ancient Japan, the Nakasendo now is the biggest draw among tourists to Kiso Valley in Nagano Prefecture. Walking along the scenic trail throughout centuries-old post towns is a typically authentic cultural experience that takes you back in time to a bygone era. The best-loved leg of the Nakasendo in Kiso is the trail from Magome to Tsumago, two impeccably preserved post towns representing spectacular Japanese countryside. The hike is relatively gentle with around 3 hours of walking at a leisurely pace, covering about eight kilometers through the forest, local houses and fields. At the bottom of the valley, Magome town enjoys stunning views of nearby Mt. Ena, along with beautifully stone slab paved streets and several museums to visit. Meanwhile, Tsumago, in the heart of Southern Kiso, has excellently preserved its old-world charm: the single-story wooden inns, tranquil townscapes with hanging paper lanterns and the ruins of Tsumago Castle, making it a great stop to learn about the history of the area and the country.