Kumano City History & Folklore Museum 熊野市歴史民俗資料館
Kumano City History & Folklore Museum Exhibits
The Kumano History & Folklore Museum has two floors. The first floor showcases Jomon and Yayoi period earthen pottery and stone implements found in Mie Prefecture as well as a variety of exhibits up to the beginning of the Edo Period.
These include a quirky mix of stuffed animals, one tanuki dressed as a pilgrim on the Kumano Kodo, complete with straw sandals and conical straw hat, rare prints of early western ships, weapons including spears and swords, deer antlers, calligraphy scrolls, wood carvings, Buddhist images, historic documents and maps.
This floor has a variety of household items from the post war period including some of the early Japanese radios and televisions, tansu chest of drawers, World War II weapons and uniforms such as ceramic land mines and a military tunic that only seems big enough for a school boy, cooking utensils and table ware.
Some of the items can be touched, which is unusual in many museums. It was interesting to be able to pick up an early musket and feel how incredibly heavy it was, for example.
The curator is extremely friendly and though most of the items on display are not labeled in English, he will do his best to point things out and explain.
Kumano History & Folklore Museum
Kumano-shi, Mie 519-4325
Tel: 0597 89 5161
Hours: 9am-4pm; closed Monday and Thursday or the next day if Monday or Thursday is a national holiday. Also closed December 28-31 and January 1-4.
Arii Station, one stop down the coast from Kumano-shi Station, is the nearest station to the Kumano History & Folklore Museum.
Close to Arii Station is Hana-no-Iwaya Shrine and Shichiri-mihama Beach. Also, about 1 kilometer inland from the museum is Ubuta Shrine, which has connections to local mythology and is a shrine to pray for healthy childbirth.
Matsumoto-toge Pass, a hike on the Iseji Route of the Kumano Kodo, and one of the main reasons to visit the area, is north of Kumano-shi Station.