Shirakawa Village in Gifu Prefecture is a UNESCO Heritage site and hence, pretty famous amongst the tourists. That was one reason that I was delaying my trip to Shirakawa. It is definitely not a place I would explore on my own. Unless a close friend was to push me to visit it with them, it was not on my list. My close friend who would leave Japan next year insisted we visit Shirakawa, they had to check it off their ‘must-visit’ list.
I knew I would be seeing some Gassho Style houses. I had read up on that. You can find all about the history, architecture, details on the internet, better than I could explain. They have their official website too. But what fascinated me were the Japanese persimmon trees or kaki (in Japanese).
These are the Gassho style houses.
But just look at those bright orange kaki against the blue sky – like orange confetti bursting up in the sky!!
We went at the end of November – almost the end of autumn and start of winter. The pathways full of crunchy-dried brown leaves. The trees were almost leaf-less. That made kakis stand out even more. Small round kakis hanging out all by themselves on the trees.
Shirakawa is extremely popular all year round but especially during winter. All these thatched roofs covered in snow plus the illumination etc. I am sure it is pretty but it is also what is heavily advertised. That takes away the fun element for me, probably just a personal thing.
That is why I am so glad I went in Autumn. I couldn’t get enough of the persimmon trees. Every house seemed to have one right in front or on the side. The brown-grey roofs and many bright orange kaki and the bright blue sky. What a sight!!
Here enjoy some more kakis.
So well, I went for Gassho Style houses but ended up enjoying kaki trees. Hopefully, we all will walk into 2022 expecting something that we have planned or envisioned but I hope we all end up enjoying whatever 2022 brings with it.
See you next year 🙂
Exploring and experimenting with paper cutting, animation and sketching. Deeply interested in old art practices of Japan. Currently obsessed with abandoned houses in Japan!