Dining around the Irori Hearth at Nodaniya Ryokan Inn at Shirakawa-go, Japan

Dining around the Irori Hearth at Nodaniya Ryokan Inn at Shirakawa-go, Japan

Pond near Nodaniya Ryokan Inn at Shirakawa-go, Japan

Pond near Nodaniya Ryokan Inn at Shirakawa-go, Japan

Guest Room at Nodaniya Ryokan Inn at Shirakawa-go, Japan

Guest Room at Nodaniya Ryokan Inn at Shirakawa-go, Japan

Nodaniya Ryokan Inn at Shirakawa-go, Japan

Nodaniya Ryokan Inn at Shirakawa-go, Japan

Irori Hearth at Nodaniya Ryokan in Shirakawa-go, Japan

Irori Hearth at Nodaniya Ryokan in Shirakawa-go, Japan

Samurai Armor at Shirakawa-go No Yu Ryokan

Samurai Armor at Shirakawa-go No Yu Ryokan

Located in the Japanese Alps, the once-isolated, rural mountain villages of Shirakawa-gō and Gokayama both sport a unique style of Japanese vernacular architecture known as Gasshō-zukuri -- distinct for their thatched, steeply slanting roofs resembling two hands in prayer.

Located in the Japanese Alps, the once-isolated, rural mountain villages of Shirakawa-gō and Gokayama both sport a unique style of Japanese vernacular architecture known as Gasshō-zukuri -- distinct for their thatched, steeply slanting roofs resembling two hands in prayer.

Shirakawago-Shimizu in Shirakawa-go Japan (Courtesy of TD, Madison, USA)

Shirakawago-Shimizu in Shirakawa-go Japan (Courtesy of TD, Madison, USA)

Kanja, Gassho-zukuri Japanese Farmhouse accommodations in Shirakawa-go

Kanja, Gassho-zukuri Japanese Farmhouse accommodations in Shirakawa-go

Dinner at Shirakawago-Shimizu in Shirakawa-go, Japan (Courtesy of TD, Madison, USA)

Dinner at Shirakawago-Shimizu in Shirakawa-go, Japan (Courtesy of TD, Madison, USA)

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