The Shoryudo Region - Follow Japan's Dragon Route for Famous Sights and Beautiful Scenery

Chubu Tour Shoryudo 2020.07.06
The Shoryudo route takes you through the heart of Japan, making it a great way to see amazing off-the-beaten-track destinations.

Following the Path of the Dragon

Carving its way through central Japan, the name Shoryudo (昇龍道) literally means "way of the rising dragon," which describes the serpentine path of this famous route in the Chubu region. (The distinctive shape of the Noto Peninsula at the northern tip of Ishikawa Prefecture is said to resemble a dragon's head diving into the Sea of Japan, making it one end of the path.) The Shoryudo Route, and the surrounding region, includes nine Japanese prefectures smack dab in the middle of the country: Mie, Shiga, Aichi, Shizuoka, Gifu, Nagano, Toyama, Ishikawa, and Fukui. While some of these prefectures are still relatively unknown to all but the most fervid Japan travelers, along the Shoryudo Route you'll actually find some of Japan's most famous attractions (Mount Fuji, Kanazawa's Kenrokuen garden, the hot-spring-loving monkeys of Jigokudani) right alongside lesser-known treasures (like the dams of Kurobe, traditional kominka houses of Matsumoto, and the whole city of Hamamatsu, famous for eel, green tea, and flowers.)

A trip following the spine of the "Shoryudo" dragon here and there through central Japan will take you to a variety of interesting, uniquely Japanese spots that cater to travelers of all kinds. If you're ready to venture outside of Tokyo and see what the rest of Japan is really like, the Chubu region's Dragon Route is worth a look.

Some Tips for Reasonable Travel Along the Route

Shoryudo is a name mostly used to promote tourism in central Japan (in English they also like to call it the "Dragon-Rise Region"), and along with this promotion comes a wealth of resources for incoming travelers. If you're already thinking your next trip to Japan might include some time in the region, don't forget to see what discounts and conveniences might be at your disposal. Here are just a couple recommendations:

The Shoryudo Welcome Card gives international tourists discounts at a variety of retailers, restaurants, and accommodations, plus transportation services and quite a few sightseeing attractions themselves, throughout all nine prefectures of the Shoryudo region. You can see a list of the hundreds of participating facilities right here, and find out how to get your hands on your own card here.
For public transportation, quite a few different train and bus passes can be found throughout the Shoryudo region, allowing for easy movement between different attractions. The Shoryudo Free Bus Ticket and Kintetsu Rail Pass give travelers access to different transportation systems, but they both offer some of the same privileges as the Shoryudo Welcome Card.

Is the Name “The Dragon Route” Not Enough to Convince You?

If the romantic image of a dragon rising into the Sea of Japan isn't quite enough to inspire travel plans, take a look at Japankuru's video below. It features some of the most beautiful spots along the route, making it hard to resist the Dragon-Rise Region's charm.
Look out for more travel information from the Shoryudo region coming soon on Japankuru, and if you have any questions, get in touch at the Japankuru twitter, instagram, and facebook!
  • I visited Shoryudo (The Dragon Route) two years ago when traveling across Japan. It is one of the most scenic places there. So many people speak positive q words about this place and I am not even surprised. I love Shoryudo!! 2023.09.02 reply
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