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Enjoy Traditional “Gottso” in the Samurai City

Regional: Aizuwakamatsu

As a stronghold in the Tohoku region, the Aizu area was governed by famous feudal warlords. Surrounded by an abundance of nature including Lake Inawashiro and Mt. Bandai, Aizu maintains its nostalgic, unspoiled scenery and the atmosphere of a castle town. Closely linked to the area, the food and sake which originated in Aizu have developed into a unique food culture sustained by the natural bounty of each season. *Gottso means a “feast served for important guests” in the Aizu regional dialect.

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Local food: Kozuyu

The cuisine originated as food served to the feudal lords who were required to spend every other year in residence in Edo (Tokyo). Even today this local dish is indispensable for ceremonial occasions. The dish consisting of dried seafood, such as scallops in a soup stock, is invaluable in understanding the food culture in Aizu. Eating the food in traditional Aizu lacquerware also provides an opportunity to enjoy the local culture.

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Local food: Dengaku

Dengaku (tofu and vegetables grilled on skewers with sweet soybean paste) was originally eaten by feudal warriors on the battlef ield, wappa-meshi (a rice dish served in a round wooden container) and sake brewing were handed down from the Edo period; the Aizu Basin surrounded by mountains abounds with high quality agricultural produce. Enjoy f lavorful local dishes using natural ingredients.

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Scenery: Tsurugajo Castle

The pastoral scenery of the countryside set against Mt. Bandai with the Iide Mountains in the background, and the old samurai residences of Aizu reminiscent of the Edo period, still remain in Aizuwakamatsu. The tower of Tsurugajo Castle, a symbol of the city, provides a bird’s-eye view of the Aizu Basin and the castle town, and provides ever-changing views of nature depending on the season.

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Experience: Harvesting Cabbages under the Snow

Spring asparagus, summer tomatoes, autumn rice and sake, and winter Aizu-jidori chicken; local specialty dishes along with a wide variety of seasonal menu items are all available to enjoy. Visitors can also enjoy experiences involving traditional crafts such as Aizu lacquerware, as well as agricultural experiences.

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Sightseeing route: Historical Higashiyama Hot Springs Village

Aizuwakamatsu, also known as Samurai City, offers a wide variety of attractions: A tour to the symbolic Tsurugajo Castle, strolling through the castle town, fruit picking in the farming areas which once served to support the Aizu Domain, and visiting produce stands. Feel refreshed in the vast natural areas surrounding Lake Inawashiro with its considerable expanse of farmlands and waterfront areas. The hot spring resort within the city also provides accommodation to accompany the enjoyable experience of extended sightseeing.

Related links
Visit Aizu [English]
Visit Aizu [traditional Chinese]
Visit Aizu [simplified Chinese]

Inquiries

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Name Aizu-Wakamatsu Tourism Bureau
URL http://www.aizukanko.com/

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