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Rustic and Refined

Yusuhara mountain town rises above clouds, with lush cedar forests, thatch and traditional carpentry. Walk the Samurai trail of Ryoma.

Discover Yusuhara

Elevated 1,455 meters above sea level, Yusuhara Town is on a Karst Plateau and surrounded by forest. The perfect location to try a forest bathing program a healing experience for modern living on Forest Therapy Road. Cows graze leisurely along the 3km long Kubotani which extends along the waterway and a line of windmills.

This small hamlet is significant due to the presence of six dramatic buildings designed by the world-famous architect Kengo Kuma. Yusuhara’s former mayor happened to be good friends with the architect, and luckily Kuma rose to the challenge. The most recent build was  the Yusuhara Town Library, completed in 2018. Called a “library above the clouds.”, look up to see a ceiling with crisscrossing beams that resembles an upside down forest.

Yusuhara is notable also for a long bridge and Mishima Shrine. Take a steep trail to retrace the escape route of the local hero Ryoma Sakamoto on the Dappan Trail. Pass near Kusabuki, a restaurant in a traditional thatched farmhouse. Find small statues celebrating the town’s tradition of kagura (sacred music and dance) along the main road. This is also a gateway to Shikoku Karst National Park where the Tengu Highlands offer high-altitude hiking and stargazing.

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