Monday, November 30, 2009

Traditional japanese house


It's only been quite recently that I have begun to appreciate the aesthetics of traditional Japanese houses. This one seemed a little lighter than many.


I have also come to appreciate the gardens, though I can't quite get used to the fact that Japanese gardens are meant to be looked at, not walked in.

For many years I didn't even bother going into any of the many old houses open to the public.


This one is located in the small village of Chikauchi-cho, a few hundred meters from Takeuchi JR station in SW Nara Prefecture.


We stopped in on our way to walk the Katsuragi kaido. The place had obviously been recently renovated and had just opened to the public. Like many places off the beaten track, entrance was free.


  1. Let me just say that you have one of the nicest blogs on Japan that I have come across. These looks inside the houses and rooms are fantastic. I love the look of the interiors and was always astonished that a room was quickly transformed from empty to full by one small lady wearing a kimono. Sleeping on the floor was a good thing back then but the hibachi in the room was banned, by me, as I didn't want a screaming migraine headache in the morning.

    I just looked at the sidebar and your contents or labels and the number of posts for each. You have been at this for a long time and I have yet to click a label and not find something absolutely fascinating there.

    I will be back and look more. I got here from a sidebar link on a blog by sixmats. He has been to my place and leaves a comment when he comes.

    I was in Japan from 1953-1956, mostly around Sendai. There were two Army bases there then and I was in both of them. My blog is at the following link. I will also link your blog on it as well as others, whose blogs are as good as your blog is.

    Abraham Lincoln
    Brookville, Ohio

  2. I second that comment. This is my favorite "about Japan" blog ever.

  3. I must admit my fascination with traditional japanese houses has diminished a little. We live in one that is not too traditional ,but enough to make you wonder.....
    In summer you sweat "like a pig" and in winter you freeze. Heating is a disaster because paper and wood is not really very good isolation.

    Are there any ways to learn how to deal sensible with this? Do you have any information on this?

    Greetings from Kanagawa, Volland

    PS: I am realy enjoying your blog... I married my japanese Girlfreiend of 15 years,and we have been living here for over a year, so I am still "new"

  4. Hi Volland..
    The origins of the traditional Japanese house seem to be in warmer climes....
    I insulated my house, under the floors, the ceilings, and the outside walls. Then I put in a woodstove.
    Doesnt help in the summer though...

  5. It's very easy to see the roots of much modernist design and architecture in the traditional Japanese house. Frank Lloyd Wright loved Japanese design and visited Japan many times. The more I see of traditional Japanese design, the more I recognize its influence in his work.