While rural Konosu is famed for having the biggest section of the Arakawa river–Japan’s widest river–that isn’t the main reason people come here. Some people may drive past the river bridge, but others may not. The Arakawa here is 2537 meters wide, according to a sign on the bridge, yet the majority of that distance is rice paddies.
“The other world-record-breakers are what draw day-trippers from Tokyo.”
Japan’s tallest hina ningyo tower, a perilous pyramid of traditional hina dolls, is located in Konosu. For 400 years, the village has been producing traditional Japanese dolls and transporting them around Japan.
The Marutake Ningyo factory produces dolls for hundreds of various businesses across Japan, and you’ll realize why when you take a look at them for yourself. During business hours, you are welcome to come in and browse the items on the ground floor. On the second floor, you can see how the dolls are manufactured, as rows of doll artisans meticulously put these pricey works of art together by hand.
The largest poppy field in Japan may also be found in Konosu. It also has the highest concentration of salvia, primroses, and marigolds. It’s difficult to find a day in the spring when Konosu isn’t hosting some form of flower festival.
Contemplating the heaviest firework in the world? Head to Konosu. Outside the station, a model of this 1000-pound firework with a radius of over four feet may be seen. Every year in early October, a hanabi festival is celebrated, providing a rare opportunity to witness fireworks in the autumn.
The old Nakasendo, one of the five Edo-period highways that runs from Tokyo to Kyoto, is another example. It’s like stepping back in time, with many of the structures looking just as they did hundreds of years ago.
Don’t miss out on Konosu’s kawahaba udon, a B-class gourmet dish with udon as wide as two inches. Because it’s only available in ten shops, a kawahaba ultimate udon tour is a viable alternative.
What You Should Know
Opening Hours Of The Marutake Ningyo Doll Factory
9:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. (closed on Sundays)
Konosu, Saitama Prefecture, Japan
On the JR Takasaki Line (Shonan Shinjuku/Ueno Tokyo Line), Konosu Station is 60 minutes from Shinjuku. In Konosu, public transportation is limited, although most of the landmarks are within walking distance of one another.