The song of Onko-chan, a Japanese yew tree spirit, introduces many things about Gonohe Town, such as its facilities, events, and beautiful nature. Gonohe Town is located in a cold region, but when you look at the townspeople who appear in the video, the town gives out a very warm atmosphere.
Gonohe Town is located inland in the south-eastern of Aomori Prefecture. Over 50% of the town is made of woods. There are many towns in the area, that have the suffix “nohe” preceded by a number. It is said that during the Kamakura period 9 farms were set up in the region, and that “nohe” refers to one of these settlements. Gonohe Town has been known as a place that produces horses since long time ago, and even today producing horses is one of the industries of the region. You can experience historical buildings and plenty of nature along Oshu Kaido.
Access to Gonohe twon in Aomori Prefecture
Arriving by airplane:
Approx. 1 hour and 15 minutes from Haneda Airport to Misawa Airport, and approx. 50 minutes by car from Misawa Airport to Gonohe Town.
Arriving by train:
Approx. 2 hours and 50 minutes from Tokyo Station to Hachinohe Station by the Tohoku Shinkansen, and approx. 20 minutes by car from Hachinohe Station to Gonohe Town.
Must-see Spots to Visit When Visiting Gonohe Town in Aomori Prefecture
House of Etoke Family (Etoke Jutaku)
A house that is said to have been built during the Tenmei era (1781-1788) of the Edo period. It has a characteristic thatched hip roof, which is slanted in all four directions. The house has been designated as an Important Cultural Property of Japan. Currently it is still a private house, so you can only see the exterior.
Rekishi Mirai Park
A park that has libraries, memorial halls and more within its huge grounds. Inside the library, there is an annex called “Kimura Hidemasa Hall”, which shows the achievements of Hidemasa Kimura, who is originally from Gonohe Town, and who created Japan’s first domestically-produced passenger plane. One of the things within the park that deserves attention are the reconstructed facilities of Gonohe Daikansho (magistrate’s office), which used to rule the area from the Edo period until the beginning of the Meiji period.
Must-eat Dishes to Order When Visiting Gonohe Town in Aomori Prefecture
The area is famous for dishes that use horse meat. The local people eat it as a healthy meat that is lean and low on fat. Examples of horse meat dishes include horse-meat sashimi, sushi, and hot pot. Horse meat soup that is seasoned with miso-flavored soup is a popular dish in Gonohe Town.
Beef that is made of Japanese Black, which is a breed of cattle that represents Japan. In the past, Kuraishi beef has passed all the other famous beefs like Maezawa beef and Matsusaka beef and taken the top prize. The beautiful marbling and the high quality lean meat are delicious. Every dish, including steak, sukiyaki, and shabu-shabu, that uses Kuraishi beef is guaranteed to be delicious.
Must-get Souvenirs to Buy When Visiting Gonohe Town in Aomori Prefecture
Apples (Kogyoku variety)
Aomori Prefecture produces a lot of apples. Kogyoku variety is the local specialty of Gonohe Town. It is a small apple, which characteristics are its sourness, sweetness, and the vivid red color. The apple doesn’t crumble easily even if it is processed, which is why it can also be enjoyed in many sweets and baked dishes like apples pies.
Gonohe Town, which has plenty of cultivated nature and delicious gourmet to enjoy, is a lovely town that will surely satisfy your stomach as well as your mind.