A good selection of the artifacts of ainu life of the past and a reflection of their current lifestyle is gathered here in a reconstructed ainu house. The house has similarities to the Sami houses of Lappland and also the Athabascan Indian Houses. The central part is occupied by a fire that is always burning.
Excellent examples of Ainu clothes of yore and various utensils for hunting and gathering of food.
The Ainu people are the original inhabitants of Hokkaido. Although they originally lived near Kushiro, they have built a village in Akan. The village is mostly just souvenir shops selling wooden crafts but there is also a thatched-roof lodge where you can see traditional dance performances and Ainu playing bamboo mouth harps. There is another thatched-roof lodge next door to that which is an Ainu home. You can visit it for a fee & see displays of Ainu utensils and wooden crafts.
The souvenir shops are pretty interesting & you can get some great gifts for friends & family back home. There is no bargaining, but you can have your name engraved on most of the wooden products on sale for free. They sell keychains, trinkets, utensils, frames, dolls, frames, beautiful furniture, etc.
This beautiful lake is located in the remnants of a volcanic crater. It is 5 miles in area. The bottom of the lake is inhabited by miraculously spherical algae, marimo, found in only a few lakes in the world. Marimo is green, soft, & velvety & can grow up to 8-12 inches in diameter. Marimo is also found in Europe as well! It was first discoverd by an Austrian botanist in Lake Zeller, Austria in 1823.
situated right on the main street a few streets down from the ainu museum, this lovely little restaurant is a find. The ambience is very japanese and the service as expected.. excellent..
we sat down japanese style and a leisurely lunch was had before heading back to the museum wading through the hundreds of souvenir shops lining the streets.
Favorite Dish: fresh trout was not available, so it was frozen trout.
a dish of tempura of small fish ( larger than nasi lemak of malaysia or chemmeen of cochin, India )