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Kansai | Mie Prefecture

Iga Ueno

Iga Ueno is famous for the Iga ninja and birthplace of Matsuo Basho, a renowned Japanese poet from the Edo Period.

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Iga Ueno

Iga City (伊賀市, Iga-shi) was formed in 2004 with the merger of Ueno City and five surrounding towns and villages. The city is named after the former Iga Province, which covered part of today's Mie Prefecture. The city has been commonly referred to as Iga Ueno (伊賀上野) to avoid confusion with other places named Ueno. Iga Ueno is most famous for ninja. The Iga school of ninjutsu (art of stealth), based in the former Ueno City, used to be one of Japan's two leading ninja schools during the feudal era (the Koka School in neighboring Shiga Prefecture was the other). Today, Iga Ueno attracts visitors with its fine ninja museum. Iga Ueno Castle is famous for having the highest stone walls in Japan. These stone walls were selected for use in a scene for the movie "Kagemusha," directed by the internationally renowned film maker Akira Kurosawa.

Iga Ueno is also the birthplace of one of Japan's greatest poets, Basho Matsuo, who lived during the early Edo Period. Matsuo Basho created 'haiku,' a unique Japanese-style short poetry consisting of 3 lines with 17 syllables and contributed to the renovation of the old- fashioned linked verse known as 'haikai.' The Haisei-den, the great haiku poet's hall, was built inside Ueno Park in 1942 to commemorate the 300th anniversary of his birth. The building itself is shaped like the figure of Basho attired in a traveling clothes. The round roof symbolizes his sedge hat, the octagonal eaves his surplice, the pillar is his cane, and the frame of the Haisei-den is in the shape of his face. Other Basho-related facilities include the Minomushi-an, or bagworm hermitage, and the venerable Basho Memorial Hall, Basho-o Kinen-kan Museum. A memorial museum, his birth home and a former hermitage are some of the city's Basho related sites.

Things To Do in Iga Ueno

photo of Iga Ninja Museum

Kansai | Mie | Iga Ueno

Iga Ninja Museum

Iga Ninja Museum consists of a ninja residence, a state for ninja shows, and two exhibition halls. It can be found in Mie Prefecture near the Iga Ueno Castle.

photo of Ueno Castle

Kansai | Mie | Iga Ueno

Ueno Castle

Ueno Castle has the highest stone walls in Japan and was originally constructed in the 16th century.