Oshino Ninja Village
Outdoor | Avg price: ¥800 | English Available: None (Unknown)
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Dress, Train and Move Like a Ninja!
Oshino Ninja Village in Yamanashi prefecture opened just last year, 2015. Not a lot of people know about it yet I believe. I only found out about it through a flyer I received at the Shibazakura Festival earlier this year.
The first thing you have to go through is a souvenir shop, where you purchase your ticket. You can also rent a ninja costume (which I did of course) so you can play the part and really immerse yourself in the experience. Once you go out into the real park or "ninja village", you'll see quite a breathtaking view. On a clear day, you can see Mount Fuji in the background (please refer to the photos). As you go along, you will see some sort of training ground with various tasks, such as going through wires without making any bells ring as well as throwing shuriken (not real ones though but still pretty cool). The tasks may be challenging for kids but quite easy for adults.
There is also a scheduled mini performance with a ninja showing his tricks through a short story. There is a dojo, too, but then I was not able to try this anymore as I ran out of time and the line was pretty long. I had lunch there and it was a pretty big meal. They also serve ninja beer and it was a great way to wrap the day up.
The entire experience at the ninja village was great. However, it seems that the only way to access this area is by car or by bus, which was very confusing especially for foreigners. There are scheduled times for the bus but they are not on time. I was supposed to catch the highway bus at Kawaguchiko Station but missed it because the bus in front of the Oshino Ninja Village took forever to arrive and I wasn't even allowed to board because the bus was full.