Umenoki Iseki Park

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Located on the southern foot of the Yatsugatake Mountains, Umenoki Iseki Park is a place where you can get a first-hand experience of Japan’s prehistory. The park marks the location of the Umenoki ruins, a prehistoric archaeological site and a designated National Historic Site. Beginning in 2003, the area was surveyed and excavated and the remains of a settlement from the Middle Jomon period (3,520-2,470 BCE) were found. The smaller and somewhat newer Kinsei Iseki Park archaeological site is also nearby.

The excavation turned up the foundations of a circular village of up to 150 pit dwellings surrounding a central plaza. The dwellings are believed to have been dugout huts with conical earthen roofs, with bark underneath and recessed earthen floors. The reconstructions of these dwellings in the park today were built by local volunteers. There is evidence of an early road down the mountain leading from the settlement to the Yuzawa River, around which traces of life have also been found.

The site itself gives great insight into how people lived during the Jomon period, while most of the artifacts unearthed at the site are on display at the visitor center and in the nearby Hokuto Archaeological Museum.


Venue Address

408-0201 6315 Akenocho Asao, Hokuto-shi

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