This post is mainly random shots of more delicious details from around Takayama.
Above the man sticks his head in a regional icon – a Sarubobo – AKA monkey baby!.
These are red human-shaped dolls, with no facial features, made in a variety of sizes.
Traditionally, sarubobos are made by grandmothers for their grandchildren as dolls, and for their daughters as a charm for good marriage, good children and to ensure a well-rounded couple.
Some more raccoon dogs with their magical expanding scrotums can be found hiding around corners.
Meanwhile sumptuous coloured fabrics are piled high in local shops, ready for making into kimonos.
A pharmacy window attracts my attention with its display of old medicine labels.
Back in the little Sanmachi Suji District now. This consists of three streets in the heart of Takayama’s old town, which lies just to the east of the Miya-gawa River.
The streets are lined with traditional houses, shops, restaurants, sake breweries and cafes. These three quaint streets are among the most picturesque in Japan, and gives you a feel of what Japan looked like around the turn of last century.
But modernity is never too far away in the shape of wacky posters and eyewateringly priced meats – ‘high priced parts’ anyone?
Plus there’s always some graffiti paste ups for me to enjoy too,
Next up we’re catching the bus and heading for the hills to explore the staggeringly beautiful Shirakawa-go, an area with over 100 traditional thatch-roof houses, known as gassho-zukuri in Japanese.