A few minutes by train from the Nara Park area, Yamato Koriyama is compact, yet offers a wide variety of attractions developed by the samurai classes, from elegant tea ceremony experiences to goldfish cultivation. The narrow shopping streets are also charming and unique.

Experience Yamato Koriyama

Local Insights


Goldfish, or kingyo, have been highly prized since the Edo period, and their cultivation was considered a suitable side-job for samurai. They are inextricably linked with summer in Japan, when children catch them at summer festivals, and they feature on fabric designs, glass wind chimes and even summer sweets.

Yamato Koriyama Castle

Nara’s only remaining castle was built around 1580 in the Sengoku or “Warring States” period by Hidenaga Toyotomi, a powerful warlord. Needing to build it quickly, stones were taken from local temples and shrines, and you can even see stone statues in the defensive walls. Read more about the Sengoku period and Japanese history.

Illustrated Map for PC
Illustrated Map for

Good to Know


Best Time to Go

With easy access from Nara City, Yamato Koriyama is a good excursion in any season. From spring through autumn, the area's temples and castle offer views of azalea, hydrangea and other seasonal flowers. There is also a large shopping mall nearby for the odd rainy day in winter.

Bus/Taxi/on Foot
Bus/Taxi/on Foot

Getting Around

A combination of bus, taxi and travel on foot is recommended to get around Yamato Koriyama. The castle and shops around Kintetsu-Koriyama Station can be covered on foot. For other sights in the area, buses depart from Kintetsu-Koriyama and Yamato-Koizumi stations, but often run infrequently. Consider taking a taxi from one of the stations to maximize sightseeing time in the area.

Travel Tips

As with areas outside of Nara City, shops and restaurants sometimes close irregularly on weekdays and during the off-peak season. Plan accordingly and consult with a tourist information center before visiting.

Other Tips

If you prefer to relax and have someone take care of the planning for you, consider joining a bus tour to the Yamato Koriyama area. One that includes a relaxed tea ceremony experience at Jikoin Temple, can be booked through Nara Visitor Center & Inn, or online here.

Getting to Yamato Koriyama

Yamato Koriyama is served by two stations, Koriyama Station and Kintetsu-Koriyama Station. Although the two stations are within easy walking distance of one another, the quickest route is from JR Nara Station to Koriyama Station, also on the JR Line.

From Nara Sta. to Koriyama Sta. : approx 4 min
From Nara Sta. to Koriyama Sta. : approx 4 min


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