Hiyoshi Shrine in Aoki Village in Nagano Prefecture is considered to have been founded during the Nanbokucho period (1336-1392). Its very unique architectural style was highly evaluated and it was designated as a Prefectural Treasure in 1990.
Honden (the main hall) is built in the 5-bay wide flowing style without front entrance steps leading to the door of the sanctum. It has a copper gable roof, having a long extended front slope with a flowing curve covering the veranda. It is characterized by the long shape from side to side, and uniquely the building has only one door in the middle. It used to be painted in bright vermillion, but now all the paint has come off and the wood building material has revealed its natural color, which creates a sedate atmosphere.
This pathway is the approach to Dewasanzan Shrine, which is located in Haguro-cho, Tsuruoka, Yamagata Prefecture.
Up to 500 old Japanese cedar trees line the pathway.
The pathway has three inclined sub-pathways. The 'Genganotaki (Waterfall of Genga)' is found prior to the 'ichinosaka (first slope)' and after climbing a short while, the Haguro Pagoda, a national treasure thought to be reconstructed in 1375, can be found along one of the sidepaths. Next to this is the giant 'okinasugi (grandfather cedar)', which is said to be more than 1,000 years old. At the top of 'ninosaka (second slope)' is a teahouse where one may rest.
Dewasanzan Shrine is at the top of the pathway. The 28-meter-high main building is of Gongen architecture, and its thatched roof with a width of 2.1 meters is said to be the best in the Tohoku area.
The shrine also features a bronze statue of Basho, commemorating the famous reference to the shrine in the 'Oku-no-hosomichi'.
The Fukuzawa Residence, in Rusuimachi, Nakatsu, Oita Prefecture, is where Yukichi Fukuzawa spent his childhood and youth. It is designated a National Monument.
Yukichi was born in the Nakatsu-Hanzo Residence in Doujima, Osaka Prefecture, in the 5th year of the Tenpo era (1835). After his father's death, Yukichi returned to his hometown when he was a year and 6 months old, living in this house until he was 19.
The storehouse in the backyard was remodeled by Yukichi for the sole purpose of studying, while the main house was where he slept and ate. The Museum built next to the house has many exhibits from this period on display.
After reaching 19, Yukichi traveled to Nagasaki to take Dutch studies, but soon became keenly aware of the importance of English. He studied English by himself and boarded the "Kanrin-maru" ship in order to sail to the United States. Later, Yukichi wrote the famous book "Gakumon-no-susume", which sold more than 3.4 million copies, and he became the founder of Keio University.
The Fukuzawa Residence is an historic household that preseres the youthful origins of Yukichi Fukuzawa, the pioneer of democracy in Japan.
The Old Eri Family Residence (Kyuu-Erike-Jyuutaku) is located in Ookawa-machi, Sanuki, Kagawa Prefecture, and is the oldest farmhouse residential building in all of Kagawa.
It was built in the 17th century, and originally was found in Nina, Ookawa-machi. The Erike ancestors bore their surname from this land, and settled on the estate. Currently, the house has been relocated to the Miroku Natural Park.
The layout of the house is known as 'sanma-madori' (three-room plan) and is harmonized by a style distinct to Eastern Kagawa. Its most distinguishing characteristics are the thatched roof, built using a technique called 'tsukudare', along with the simple decorations. The main beam of the house efficiently utilizes the bend of the tree, and is exposed at the ceiling. The ceiling of the house is formed by woven bamboos, covered with soil and clay. This kind of ceiling is called 'yamato tenjyo' ('yamato ceiling').
An 8-jyo (8-tatami) Japanese-style room with a tokonoma (alcove) is laid out, along with a traditional porch that is flooded with warm, luminous sunlight. Seeing people bask in the sun on the porch somehow brings a feeling of nostalgia, giving the house a sentimental feel. It has been nominated as an Important Cultural Property of Japan.