Located in Takayama City and discovered in 1965, the Hida Great Limestone Cave is unusual for its helictites, limestone formations that curve horizontally rather than vertically like the more common stalactites and stalagmites. The connected Ohashi Collection Kan Museum displays an eclectic array of artifacts from a private collection. The Basics
The visitors’ route through the Hida Great Limestone Cave is about 2,600 feet (800 meters) long and is best-suited to visitors with good mobility. Travelers interested in geology and natural history will especially enjoy this attraction. Most travelers visit the complex independently while visiting Takayama, in mountainous Gifu Prefecture in central Honshu. Tickets can be purchased in advance to save time.
Things to Know Before You Go
How to Get There
- Visit the Ohashi Collection Kan Museum first, before entering the caves, as the exit from the caves takes you away from the museum.
- Most of the descriptions in the caves are in Japanese.
- Take a sweater, even in warm weather, as the inside of the caves can be quite cool.
- Wear comfortable footwear with nonslip soles in the cave, because some parts of the route can get slick with water.
Most people who visit the caves stay in and around Takayama. To reach the caves, take the Nohi bus from Takayama station, then transfer to a free shuttle to take you the rest of the way to the caves.When to Get There
The Hida Great Limestone Cave and Ohashi Collection Kan Museum are open year-round, with slightly reduced hours in the winter (November to March). The caves can get cold in the winter, but are pleasantly cool in the summer.
Most travelers visit the Takayama area to check out the picturesque village of Shirakawa-go. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the village contains many thatched farmhouses that are hundreds of years old. With steeply slanted roofs designed to withstand heavy snow, the houses are a beautiful sight in both winter and summer.