You may or may not have heard of Kawachinagano. It’s a city located in Osaka prefecture, and if you find yourself anywhere near it, I highly recommend a visit.
Kawachinagano was founded on April 1st 1954, and is often also called Okukawachi. Whilst the city itself is relatively new, it’s surroundings are steeped in over 1,000 years of history, with the city hemmed in by forests and mountains. It’s truly beautiful.
Kawachinagano is pretty well connected thanks to its central station; a mere 45-50 minute ride into the heart of Osaka. There’s also a decent bus service and taxis available, so you can get round without use of a car. That being said, I highly recommend hiring a car if you can; there are some amazing mountain roads to navigate.
Central station at night.
I stayed here in a Buddhist temple for a long weekend. It was a memorable experience, one worthy of its own post. My favourite part about the entire stay though was the bus ride. Winding down the mountain roads, passing elegant Japanese housing with azure roofs, passing rice paddies, passing through thickets of forest and catching glimpses of distant mountain ranges, and watching the locals flit to and fro in the dance of daily life. It’s a journey I’ll likely remember forever.
Next time I find myself in Kawachinagano, I hope it’s by car.