Dating back to 1608, Arimatsu (有松), once a town on the Tokaidō highway but now a suburb of southeastern Nagoya, is famous for shibori, an intricate and time-consuming traditional method of tie-dyeing cotton that is still practised here. One shibori kimono typically takes up to six months to complete, which accounts for the high price of shibori goods. You’ll find many shops selling them along the very picturesque street lined with prime examples of old Japanese architecture that lies just south of Meitetsu Arimatsu Station. If not for the utility poles and power lines, it could be a scene from a woodblock print – the old wooden houses with intricate tiled roofs providing the perfect backdrop to spring and autumn festivals (held on the third Sunday of March and first Sunday of October) when ornate floats are paraded down the street. Find out more about the tie-dyeing industry at the Arimatsu-Namuri Shibori Kaikan (有松鳴海絞会館).

Arimatsu can be reached directly from Meitetsu Nagoya Station (20min), but if you’re already at Atsuta-jingu you can board the train at the closer Jingu-mae Station. The ticket collector at Meitetsu Arimatsu can give you an English map of the area, although the houses are clearly visible from the station exit. One of the first of the old wooden houses you’ll pass after you turn left into the conservation area street is Kaihantei, which is also home to the delicious bakery-café Dasenka.

Travel offers; book through Rough Guides

Japan features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

Japan travel tips: 13 things to know before you go

Japan travel tips: 13 things to know before you go

With its glittering royal palaces, ancient temples and sacred shrines as well as sandy beaches, some of the world’s best skiing and beautiful national parks, …

14 Nov 2016 • Freya Godfrey insert_drive_file Article
Where to stay in Tokyo: an area by area guide

Where to stay in Tokyo: an area by area guide

As the biggest city in the world, it’s unsurprising that Tokyo is crammed full of different places to stay – and with each district boasting its own charact…

11 Nov 2016 • Rough Guides Editors insert_drive_file Article
What happens when you blend English tradition with Japanese craftsmanship

What happens when you blend English tradition with Japanese craftsmanship

In a delicious meeting of two worlds, the most English of drinks has been combined with Japanese craftsmanship to create a premium craft gin, KI NO BI (“the b…

06 Oct 2016 • Rebecca Hallett insert_drive_file Article
View more featureschevron_right

Join over 60,000 subscribers and get travel tips, competitions and more every month

Join over 60,000 subscribers and get travel tips, competitions and more every month