Nara is the perfect place to go for travelers looking to enjoy a traditional Japanese city.

Visitors from all over the world love Nara Prefecture for its famous historic buildings, cute and friendly deer, and delicious local food. Here, we’re going to share 9 quick and helpful tips on how to make the best use of your time.

Options to enjoy the area abound! Visit intriguing buildings like World Heritage sites Tōdai-ji Temple and Kōfuku-ji, head over to the historic Hōryū-ji Templethat was established by the legendary Prince Shōtoku, or wander into Nara Park to frolic with the friendly deer inhabiting the area, among other activities. One thing’s for sure – you’ll hardly ever run out of fascinating things to see and do in Nara!

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1. Quick facts about Nara

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Where is Nara in Japan?
Let’s review a few facts about Nara first. Found in Japan’s midwest region of Kansai, Nara was where the ancient capital of Japan was located in times of yore.

The place is thus home to many historical places of interest like Tōdai-ji, Kōfuku-ji, and Hōryū-ji. Most tourists new to the area will benefit from sticking to main attractions like Tōdai-ji and Nara Park first, as they are conveniently located within Nara City.

Nara is neighbors with Osaka and Kyoto. It takes about 40 minutes to reach Nara Station from Osaka Namba Station, both on the Kintetsu Railway, and about 45 minutes to reach Nara from Kyoto Station via the JR Nara Line.

Kobe is also located relatively nearby. It takes about 80 minutes to reach Kobe-Sannomiya Station on the Hanshin Line from Nara via the Hanshin-Namba Line and Kintetsu-Nara Line.

This accessibility means Nara is a reasonable place to use as a base for sightseeing trips around major areas in Kansai.

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What are some fun events in Nara?
There are plenty of interesting annual events in Nara that have deep links to Japanese culture and history.

For example, the sacred water-drawing festival (omizutori), part of an event known as the Shuni-e that heralds the coming of spring, has been held in Tōdai-ji every year between February to March since the year 752. During the event, torches are lit up every day for a mesmerizing fire ceremony.

Visitors can also look forward to the Shōsōin Exhibition held in the Nara National Museum every autumn. Planning one of these events into your itinerary will make for great cultural immersion!

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What are some of the famous foods in Nara?
In terms of local delicacies, well-known Nara s…

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