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The Secret Life of the Ninja

  • Experience the History and Life of the Ninja
  • Make Things by Hand at Ninja no Sato!

Experience the History and Life of the Ninja

The Iga area is known as the “Ninja no Sato,” meaning “the Ninja village.” The urban area that has come to prosper as a castle town is home to both the Iga-ryu Ninja Museum and tranquil, graceful Iga Ueno Castle. This is an ideal place for travelers to learn more about the history and culture of the ninja.

Iga-ryu Ninja Museum

Ninja Fans: Don't Miss the World's Foremost Palace of Ninja Skills!

The Secret Life of the Ninja

The ninja were a special group of soldiers that were assigned to gain more information about the enemy and assassinate key members using special ninja skills called ninjutsu. The ninja were said to have begun their activities in the year 1100, and the area around Iga is well known for the ninja. The ninja possessed highly impressive physical skills in leaping and jumping, and used various inventive measures in their places of residence to protect themselves from their foes. The Iga-ryu Ninja Museum is the place to see, touch and experience the allure of the ninja for yourself. In this museum is a collection of mechanisms and tricks used by the ninja in the ninja’s residence (ninja yashiki), as well as two halls that feature a wide assortment of artifacts where you can experience the ways of ninjutsu (the “Ninja Experience Hall”) and see how the ninja history has been passed on (the “Ninja Tradition Hall”). There is also a large plaza (the “Ninja Experience Plaza”) where visitors can see some really impressive ninja action shows.

Activities We Recommend

Shuriken-Throwing Activities

Shuriken-Throwing Activities

The shuriken is a weapon typically thrown by ninjas to wound or kill their opponents. There are many types of shuriken on display at the museum, and visitors can see demonstrations of shuriken throwing as well as try their hand at throwing the shuriken themselves.

Ninja Action Shows

Ninja Action Shows

See ninjas battle one another while hearing about their weaponry in a genuine ninja action show. This amazing show features actual ninja weapons and impressive acrobatics.

Ninja Transformation

Ninja Transformation

The Danjiri Kaikan, a five-minute walk from the museum, offers a “ninja transformation” service to let visitors rent and try on ninja clothing. You can have fun wearing the clothes while you are exploring the Iga-ryu Ninja Museum and Iga Ueno Castle. The Danjiri Kaikan also features some impressive exhibits that are definitely worth a look, including the Danjiri (a festival float) and the demon masks and costumes used at festivals.

Activities We Recommend

There are many hidden mechanisms and tricks to be found in the ninja residence. The lady ninjas, called “kunoichi,” will be your guide. English explanations are available throughout the museum for ninja fans who come from overseas to enjoy this place.

Iga Ninjas Were Proficient in the Use of Fire as a Weapon.

The Iga ninjas were said to be most proficient in the art of using fire as a weapon to attack their enemies, by using weapons such as incendiary bombs, arrows of fire, and firearms. Long before the age of missiles, attacks by fire were used as an effective means to frighten and damage the enemy.

The Ordinary Ninja Was Just a Farmer?

In order to avoid blowing their cover, ninjas wore the clothes of farmers. It’s said that when the ninjas walked outside, they dressed as ordinary folk and farmers, and disguised themselves as pharmacists, monks and many other people from time to time.

The Ninja Train

A ninja-themed train offers rides to Uenoshi Station. Kids love the train cars that are painted with ninja illustrations.

Iga Ueno Castle

Iga Ueno Castle

A Beautiful Castle with One of the Largest Stone Walls in Japan

Located next to the Iga-ryu Ninja Museum, Iga Ueno Castle is a prominent and beautiful castle that was built in 1585. The stone walls of this castle are amongst the highest in Japan, measuring 29.7 meters (97.4 feet) from the base to the upper edge. The castle was featured in the film Kagemusha by world-famous director Akira Kurosawa. Visitors can learn more about the history of Japan inside the three-story castle keep by viewing the displays of weaponry and armor as well as ceiling murals by leading Japanese artists.

  • Experience the History and Life of the Ninja
  • Make Things by Hand at Ninja no Sato!

map

Date Visited: November 22, 2012

Photos and Information Provided By: Iga-ryu Ninja Museum
Ashura—The Iga Ninja Clan (ninja show performance group)
Danjiri Kaikan (exhibition hall)
Igaueno Tourist Association
Iga Association of Industry and Culture

All rights are reserved for images on this website. Copying or reusing the images on this site is prohibited.

Make Things by Hand at Ninja no Sato!

In a mountain village on the outskirts of the city of Iga is a wide-open space called “Iga no Sato: Moku-Moku Tezukuri Farm,” a place where visitors can come to enjoy nature and agriculture, and try their hand at making handmade foods. A wide variety of hands-on classes are available, where adults and children alike can easily spend a full day to experience for themselves many different activities that show the connections between food and the farm, and between food and the pasture.

Iga no Sato: Moku-Moku Tezukuri Farm

Ninja Fans: Don’t Miss the World’s Foremost Palace of Ninja Skills!

Ninja Fans: Don’t Miss the World’s Foremost Palace of Ninja Skills!

Visitors at the “Iga no Sato: Moku-Moku Tezukuri Farm” can try their hand at making all sorts of food themselves, including ham, sausages, beer, Japanese confections, bread, and baked sweets. There are fun activities and events to participate in at any time of year, such as strawberry picking, horseback riding, cow milking and feeding milk to the animals in the pastures of this farm. The natural all-you-can-eat buffet that features delicious vegetables grown on Iga area is also quite popular, with people lining up every weekend. There’s even a hot springs called “Noten Moku-Moku no Yu” here, with a foot bath (ashiyu) located in front of the hot springs that visitors can enjoy for free. For visitors who don’t speak Japanese, basic guide information in five languages (English, French, Korean, Chinese [Simplified and Traditional]) is provided. English-speaking staff are available by prior request.

Activities We Recommend

Handmade Sausage Class

Handmade Sausage Class

The handmade sausage class always draws plenty of visitors every time it is held. Visitors can squeeze the meat fillings, stuff them into sausage skins, and twist them closed to make their own sausages. The finished sausages are boiled, and participants can enjoy tasting the sausages for themselves.
*Class duration: 1½ to 2 hrs.

Beer Atelier

Beer Atelier

A beer atelier is available, where fresh beer is made from malt that is grown and dried on the premises of the farm. The “Haru Urara” beer made at this farm is recognized worldwide—it won a gold medal at the World Beer Cup 2006 held in Seattle, Washington in the U.S.A., in the American-style Hefeweizen (fermented wheat) category, out of 2,221 brands from 540 companies spanning 56 countries that participated. Tours of the atelier are also available for visitors to more fully enjoy the pleasures of local beer.

Moku-Moku no Yu

Moku-Moku no Yu

Hot springs water from a depth of 1,000 meters (3,280 feet) underground is used in this onsen, and the colors of the water vary each day, from nearly black to dark brown to olive green. Besides the large bathhouse, an open-air bath featuring several different kinds of water is available, and visitors can enjoy the fantastic view of the stars while soaking in the comfort of the bath waters.

Enjoy “Shiki no Yu” in a Different Way for Each Season

The Noten Moku-Moku no Yu bath features different and unusual kinds of water to enjoy each month, including a red wine bath, an apple bath, and the New Year’s celebratory sake bath.

Lovable Miniature Pigs Are the Stars of the Farm Show!

Several shows featuring miniature pigs are held at the farm every day. Everyone loves the way that these pigs perform their act at a leisurely pace. During the autumn harvest festival, the pigs run a race that draws an excited crowd every year.

  • Experience the History and Life of the Ninja
  • Make Things by Hand at Ninja no Sato!

map

Date Visited: November 22, 2012

Photos and Information Provided By: Iga no Sato: Moku-Moku Tezukuri Farm

All rights are reserved for images on this website. Copying or reusing the images on this site is prohibited.