Photos: Kakunodate

Kakunodate (角館, “angular (?) building” — that first character has lots of meanings, even just when it’s pronounced ‘kaku’) is a small town whose claim to fame, or at least touristiness, is a number of well-preserved old samurai houses.  I’m really confused as to how people survived in these houses: this area gets meters of snow every year, yet the walls are flimsy paper screens and there doesn’t seem to be any effective heating.

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