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An historic city, Gifu is known as the ‘belly button of Japan’ due to its central location.

Best known for the famous cormorant fishing which takes place on the Nagara river from May to October, other highlights include a reconstructed castle perched high atop Mt Kinka, one of Japan’s largest Great Buddhas and some very traditional wagashi and soy sauce makers.

In early April, visitors can also experience the truly unique spectacle of the Tejikara Fire Festival, in which fireworks are showered down onto young men in loincloths as they dance and carry a portable shrine.

In the summer, on the last Saturday of July and the first Saturday of August, there are two competing fireworks displays that are among the largest and most lavish in all Japan.

Experiences in Gifu

Cormorant Fishing

Although there are a few places where ukai or cormorant fishing is still done, that of the Nagara River in Gifu is by far the most famous. It has played a vital role in the city's history and has evolved...

Gifu – Nagara River Fireworks Displays

Fireworks enthusiasts in central Japan during the summer are in for a treat; the city of Gifu is host to two spectacular fireworks displays on consecutive weekends in the mid summer. On the last Saturday in July, The Chunichi Newspaper...
Gifu Tejikara Himatsuri Fire Festival

Gifu – Tejikara Fire Festival

The Tejikara Fire Festival is held at Tejikara Shrine in Gifu City on the second Saturday of every April and is said to have a history of more than 300 years. Cascades of fire sparks rain down on men stripped...

Accommodation in Gifu

Gifu Miyako Hotel

The Miyako is Gifu's premier Western style hotel. Overlooking the scenic Nagara River, the hotel offers nearly 200 rooms and suites and is a great option for those visiting the city. There are many staff who speak reasonable English so...