A recommended bus route for Matsumoto, a town where you can enjoy history and modern art (Part 1 of two-part series introducing Matsumoto)

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Written by Editorial department

Matsumoto is a primary city in central Nagano prefecture.

Matsumoto is a city that will satisfy travelers' curiosity with its important cultural assets that convey a sense of history and museums where you can fully enjoy modern art.

Matsumoto is located three and a half hours to four hours by rental car from central Kanazawa, which we introduced in the previous article. Along the way you can enjoy Shirakawa-go and Hida-Takayama.

Of course you can get there from Tokyo and Nagoya.

We recommend that travelers board a sightseeing bus at Matsumoto Station when they want to tour the town of Matsumoto. To take advantage of the itineraries we are about to introduce, you may want to purchase a one-day unlimited ride ticket (500 yen for adults).

Fee:¥200 (Adult), ¥500 unlimited rides for one day (Adult)

There are several possible itineraries, but this article will talk about an itinerary for travel to the north and one for travel to the east.
First, let's talk about the north. With this itinerary, you can enjoy important cultural assets that convey a sense of history.

A model route for touring Matsumoto by sightseeing bus <northern itinerary>

①Nakamachi Street
<Bus stop: Honmachi: Approx. 3 min. by bus from Matsumoto Station>
Many Dozo-Zukuri (a fireploof building) warehouses of simple black and white design remain, giving off an air of old Matsumoto. Rows of unique shops selling antiques and crafts.

Address:Chuo, Matsumoto City, Nagano

②Nawate Street
<Bus stop: Daimyo-cho: 2 min. walk from ①>
A shopping street along the Metoba River flowing through central Matsumoto. Characterized by bukeyashiki Nagaya-mon (a samurai residence) style buildings and stone pavements, the street is lined with shops rich in variety, from antique to sweets shops.

Address:Ote, Matsumoto City, Nagano

③National Treasure Matsumoto Castle
<Bus stop: Matsumoto-jo, Shiyakusho-mae: Approx. 4 min. by bus from ②>
With its seasonal beauty standing against the mountain backdrop of the Northern Alps and Utsukushigahara Highlands, the castle is a symbol of Matsumoto. The oldest standing castle in Japan with a 5-tiered, 6-story wooden keep.

Address:4-1 Marunouchi, Matsumoto City, Nagano
Business hours:8:30-17:00 (Last admission 16:30)
Closed:End-of-year and New Year holidays
Fee:Matsumoto Castle Keep admission: ¥610 (Adult)
*The ticket can be used for admission to the Matsumoto City Museum.

A model route for touring Matsumoto by sightseeing bus <eastern itinerary>

This itinerary will give you a sense of modern art! From Matsumoto Station you will head first to Matsumoto Timepiece Museum.

①Matsumoto Timepiece Museum
<Bus stop: Tokei hakubutsukan: Approx. 2 min. by bus from Matsumoto Station>
Displays Japanese and global timepiece collection including classical wall, table and wrist timepieces. A big feature is that to the extent possible, the timepieces are displayed in working condition.

Address:1-21-15 Chuo, Matsumoto City, Nagano
Business hours:9:00-17:00
Closed:Mon. (If a public holiday, the following day will be closed instead), End-of-year and New Year holidays
Fee:¥300 (Adult)

②Matsumoto City Museum
<Bus stop:Matsumoto-shi bijutsukan: Approx. 12 min. by bus from ①>
Stores and displays world famous avant-garde artist and Matsumoto native Yayoi Kusama’s works and pieces associated with Shinshu and the Alps. Planned exhibitions are also worth checking.

Address:4-2-22 Chuo, Matsumoto City, Nagano
Business hours:9:00-17:00
Closed:Mon. (If a public holiday, the following day will be closed instead), End-of-year and New Year holidays
Fee:¥410 (Adult)

From which direction do you want to enjoy Matsumoto? North or east?