Exploring Matsumoto: A Local's Guide

Exploring Matsumoto: A Local's Guide

Exploring Matsumoto: A Local's Guide

Located in Nagano Prefecture, Matsumoto is a picturesque city that offers a perfect blend of historical landmarks, natural beauty, and cultural experiences. Known for its stunning Matsumoto Castle and breathtaking views of the Japanese Alps, this city is a hidden gem that should not be missed. Join us as we take you on a journey through this delightful destination.

Matsumoto Castle

One of Japan's most treasured historical landmarks, Matsumoto Castle, also known as the "Crow Castle," is a must-visit attraction. Built in the 16th century, this imposing structure is one of Japan's oldest remaining original castles. Explore the castle's impressive architecture, climb to the top of the main keep for panoramic views, and immerse yourself in the rich history that surrounds it.

Nawate Street

For a charming stroll through the heart of Matsumoto, head to Nawate Street. This lively pedestrian-only street is lined with quaint shops, cafes, and traditional Japanese houses. Enjoy browsing through local handicrafts, sampling delicious street food, and soaking in the vibrant atmosphere. Don't forget to visit the famous "Frog Street" section, where you'll find an abundance of adorable frog-themed souvenirs.

Matsumoto City Museum of Art

If you're an art enthusiast, the Matsumoto City Museum of Art is a must-see. This contemporary art museum houses a diverse collection of Japanese and international artworks. From traditional paintings to modern sculptures, there's something for every art lover here. Take your time to appreciate the beauty and creativity showcased within its walls.

Hot Springs

No trip to Matsumoto would be complete without experiencing the rejuvenating power of its hot springs. The city is surrounded by numerous hot spring resorts, known as onsens, where you can relax and unwind. Immerse yourself in mineral-rich waters and let the stress melt away as you enjoy the tranquil ambiance and breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains.


If you're a nature lover, make sure to take a day trip to Kamikochi. Located in the Northern Japan Alps, this pristine valley offers some of the most spectacular scenery in the region. Hike along its picturesque trails, breathe in the fresh mountain air, and marvel at the crystal-clear waters of the Azusa River. Kamikochi is a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts and a perfect escape from the bustling city.

Local Cuisine

Matsumoto is known for its delicious local cuisine, so be sure to treat your taste buds to some authentic flavors. Sample the famous Shinshu soba noodles, made from locally grown buckwheat and served in various styles. Don't miss the opportunity to try oyaki, a traditional dumpling filled with savory ingredients such as vegetables or miso. Wash it all down with a glass of locally brewed sake for a truly authentic culinary experience.

Matsumoto City Museum

For a deeper understanding of Matsumoto's history and culture, the Matsumoto City Museum is a fascinating place to visit. Learn about the city's samurai heritage, explore exhibits on local folklore, and discover archaeological artifacts that date back thousands of years. The museum provides insight into the rich tapestry of Matsumoto's past and its significance in Japanese history.

Getting Around

Getting around Matsumoto is convenient and easy. The city has an efficient bus network that connects all major attractions and neighborhoods. Alternatively, you can rent a bicycle and explore the city at your own pace, taking advantage of the well-maintained bike lanes. Matsumoto is also well-connected by train, making it a great base for exploring other parts of Nagano Prefecture.

Discover the Charms of Matsumoto

With its blend of history, nature, and culture, Matsumoto offers a unique travel experience that captures the essence of Japan. From its iconic castle and vibrant streets to its tranquil hot springs and captivating art scene, this city has something to fulfill every traveler's wanderlust. So pack your bags and get ready to explore the hidden treasures of Matsumoto!