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Nihon Minaken

Japan Open Air Folk House Museum

It’s always interesting to learn how people used to live centuries ago, and good opportunity for that is visiting the open-air museum Nihon Minkaen in Kanagawa. My visit occurred on a week day in spring and there were only a few visitors, so I felt like getting back in time.

Old houses were mostly made of wood, including bamboo. Support beams, the frame of the roof and the floor were made of wood while the roof itself was made of bamboo and straw. Some inner walls were covered with the mixture of clay and wood dust. Walls were wooden too, but most of them were made as sliding doors with paper windows. The floor of living rooms was covered with straw carpets called tatami and furniture pieces were wooden as well. In the kitchen there used to be an open hearth arranged in a square-shaped groove in the floor filled with sand. Toilets used to be in small wooden buildings outside the main house.

I found the old houses to be fascinating. They were wisely arranged to serve as a good shelter, well adapted to the climate of Japan.

Getting there

Nihon Minkaen is a 25-min walk from Noborito Station on JR Nambu Line.

More info

Find out more about Nihon Minkaen.

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