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Taking a journey through the land of the rising sun. Certainly Japan is a mysterious and culturally rich land. Ninjas, samurais and Japanese animation comes to mind to those who've never visited. But what is Japan? Who are the Japanese? If you ever visit there are hidden gems of vacation locations throughout the country. We will be exploring such locations beginning at the smack dab center of Japan, Gifu prefecture. Gifu-Ken which is Japanese for Gifu prefecture is endowed with a beauty that appeals to all that travel. A balance exist between nature and city life. While city is city, you are always five minutes away from nature. Its pristine drinkable mountain water, streams and rich culture brings tourist here every year from around the world and from within Japan. “Gifu prefecture is one of the traditional regions in Japan” Most travelers will experience the busyness of a major city in Japan. Even in Gifu city vacationers will feel the rush hours of the day. However, most vacationers don't realize or see the traditional culture. A small historical town in Gifu called Gujo Hachiman has a dance culture. The residents of this small town will dance literally all night and well into the morning. This celebration goes on for a few days. In fact you will find any number of festivals that occur in most local towns or major cities. In most cases these festivals are advertised others you would have to know a guy who knows a guy. But for the most part locals are always happy to have outsiders join and participate in their festival.

Submitted by Perron Shimizu

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