Tanohata Village


The Magnificent Terrain of Geopark

Tanohata Village, despite its modest population of a little over 3,000, takes pride in the riches of its community. In addition to abundant seafood such as wakame, abalone, sea squirt and sea urchin, it is blessed with a variety of vegetables grown in its fertile soil. There are so many culinary resources in this village that one can enjoy.
Unosu Cliff (Unosu Dangai) is a series of 200 meter-high cliffs situated within the boundaries of Sanriku Fukkō National Park. It is a scenic spot known for being the location of Yoshimura Akira’s Akutagawa Award-winning novel “Journey to the Stars.” A magnificent view of the 110 million-year old strata, stretching from the southern city of Miyako to the northern village of Tanohata, leaves the impression of a perfect archetype of geoparks.
The unique-sounding names of some of the coastal towns, including Haipe and Koikorobe, are believed to have come from the Ainu indigenous people’s culture. There is also a shrine in the village associated with the Yoshitsune Northbound Escape legend. Indeed, Tanohata has many places like these full of mystery and romance.

Unique Kagura and Shishiodori handed down for generations

Kagura and Shishiodori have been handed down in the village for generations. Omiya Kagura, which is rooted in Yamabushi Kagura, is performed at Omiya Shrine in the Raga region as a sacred dance. The performers also travel to many other places in the village to pray for health, exorcize evils and purify the pillars of new buildings under construction. As a result, Kagura has been inherited as an integral part of everyday life in the village.
Another important dance called Sugenokubo Shishiodori is believed to have originated by the Hatakeyamas in the early Kamakura Era. This unusual dance can be found only two places in Japan and is performed wearing a mask called shishigashira, which represents a deer head. The most notable characteristic of this performance is that Shishiodori (deer dance) and Kenbai (sword dance) are performed in a quick succession. Kacchi Shishiodori is said to have branched out from Sugenokubo Shishiodori and is another spectacular dance known for its speedy and dynamic movements. Performers for both Sugenokubo and Kacchi do not play taiko drum while they dance. Instead, they hang a red and white striped backdrop that swings beautifully in the wind.





  • Tanohata Village Fork Museum

    This museum exhibits informational materials on the Sanhei Uprising from the Edo period. Also on display are historical everyday articles from the village as well as earthenware and stoneware excavated there. A notice written by the Morioka feudal domain, which ruled in the Edo era, that guaranteed the representative of the uprising that they would not be punished and encouraged them to return to the village was designated as cultural property of Iwate prefecture in 2014. The museum also shows a slide presentation of papercut art on the riot.

    Address| 128-9 Tanohata, Tanohata-mura, Shimohei-gun,Iwate 028-8407
    Phone| +81(0)194-33-2210


Tanohata Village Tourist Information


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  • 神楽
  • しし芸
  • ⽥植踊
  • 踊り
  • ⾳楽
  • 祭り
  • (☆ 三陸国際芸術祭過去出演団体)