Okayama Kurashiki Bikan Historical Quarter

Streets lined with white-walled kominka (traditional houses) awarded 2 stars in the Michelin Green Guide Japan

This townscape, known for the characteristically Japanese white walls of its residences and the willow trees lining the banks of the Kurashiki River, has earned recognition as an Important Preservation District for Groups of Traditional Buildings. Kurashiki prospered in the 1600s as an integral destination for the transportation of goods, and the area continues to offer a historically attractive atmosphere of a calm and harmonious life.

With its many cultural facilities—including the Ohara Museum of Art and its collection of international masterpieces; the red-bricked Kurashiki Ivy Square, a reproduction of the textile factory once representative of Kurashiki, built on the site of the former factory; the Kurashiki Museum of Folkcraft, boasting a collection with some 700 handicrafts; and the Kurashiki Archeological Museum—Kurashiki Bikan Historical Quarter offers visitors a taste of Western influence harmonized with Japanese style.

A large portion of the Honmachi and Higashimachi areas, including the approach coming from the historic Achi-jinja Shrine, offers scenery unspoiled by time and has been specified as a Historical Preservation District. The town is a quiet place lined harmoniously with restaurants, galleries, and general stores.

A particularly popular destination for tourists is the “Traditional Boat Tour of Kurashiki Canal.” This boat tour offers visitors a chance to admire the town’s white walls from a small boat along the Kurashiki River that flows through the center of town. Visitors are also recommended to experience Japanese culture firsthand by donning a kimono or a yukata before strolling through Kurashiki’s historic streets. The Bikan Historical Quarter also offers washoku (Japanese cuisine) restaurants and local confection shops where visitors can enjoy a more literal taste of Japanese tradition.

As night falls and the streets light up, a calmer presence sets in for a somewhat different experience than the daytime. Many of the old machiya (traditional townhouse) have also been rebuilt with modern appeal as lodges and guest houses, giving visitors the option to spend the night in the Bikan Historical Quarter and explore the streets at their own pace.

Basic Infomation

  • Address
    Honmachi, Chuo, Higashimachi, Achi, Tsurugata, etc., Kurashiki City, Okayama Prefecture
  • Hours
    Varies by facility
  • Closed
    Varies by facility
  • Event Period
    Varies by facility
  • Admission
    Varies by facility
  • Tel
  • Website
    Click here
  • Other Information
    15 min on foot from JR Kurashiki Sta.

    Universally designed (Accessible for all people regardless of age/disabilities)
    Wheelchair accessible toilet / Rental wheelchairs