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JR Koka Station on the JR Kusatsu Line opened its new station building in Nov. 2005. Resembling a farmer's warehouse on the outside, the inside has a number of surprises. This is the north (Kitaguchi) side. MAP
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Ninja statue on the north side of JR Koka Station.
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Map of Koka Station and a guide to the "Koka Station Trick Art." Seven wall murals of ninja paintings inside the station.
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On the north side, the waiting room has this large painting. The shadow areas is where you can stand and pose for a picture.
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Koka Station's 2nd floor corridor has shuriken (ninja throwing knives) design on the floor.
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Wall mural sideways, showing ninja and a river.
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Ceiling painting of ninja appearing from a cloak. You can have someone "touch" the tip of the cloak.
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Near the wicket entrance. These ninja wall murals are called "Trick Art." They look three-dimensional and you can interact with the paintings. You can pose within the painting itself. A brilliant idea. トリックアート
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The stairway on the south side of Koka Station has this dramatic mural of ninja in action.
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Ninja painting in Koka Station.
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This painting uses a real bench where you can sit down and pose with the ninja. JR Koka Station on the JR Kusatsu Line, Shiga Prefecture.
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Suspended ninja in a painting next to the elevator. You supposed to sit on the floor and make like the ninja is coming after you.
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JR Koka Station, south entrance.
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The south entrance has community room serving as an exhibiiton space. It also displays medicines made by Koka medicine makers. Many ninja families in Koka were medicine makers.
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Sign on south side of Koka Station. There's a ninja character climbing up the sign, but the map does not show the ninja village or ninja house.
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The old JR Koka Station (south side), photographed in 2004. It was a small station.
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Kusuri Gakushukan Medicine Museum across from Kafuka Yume no Mori park. 20-min. walk from Koka Station. くすり学習館 MAP
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Inside the Kusuri Gakushukan Medicine Museum which is quite new. Phone: 0748-88-8110, Hours: 9:30 am - 5 pm, closed Mon. (open if a national holiday and closed on Tue. instead)
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The Koka area was rich in medicinal herbs. This mural depicts women picking the herbs in Koka in the old days.
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The rich medicinal herbs in Koka spawned numerous pharmaceutical companies in Koka.
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Display case showing medicines made by pharmaceutical companies in Koka.
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Medicines made by pharmaceutical companies in Shiga Prefecture.
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The Medicine Museum has a large permanent exhibition room.
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Medicine factories and companies in Shiga Prefecture.
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Mt. Ibuki in Maibara is also noted for many herbs since centuries ago.
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Hino-shonin merchants based in nearby Hino town helped to sell Koka's medicines.
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God of Medicinal Herbs
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To make medicinal powder.
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Medicine cabinet.
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Room for changing exhibitions.
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Kafuka Yume no Mori park across the street. 鹿深夢の森
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Kafuka Yume no Mori park 鹿深夢の森
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Public Library in Kafuka Yume no Mori park.
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Inside the Public Library in Kafuka Yume no Mori park.
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Red bridge near Rakuyaji temple.
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Rakuyaji temple entrance 櫟野寺 MAP
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Way to Rakuyaji temple.
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Rakuyaji temple gate and paper lantern.
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Rakuyaji temple main worship hall. Inside is Japan's largest statue of a seated Kannon Buddha with 11 faces. 日本最大坐仏十一面観音菩薩 櫟野寺
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Rakuyaji temple Hondo hall and sumo ring. However, the seated Buddha is behind closed doors, and public viewing is rare. We can only see a picture of it. Photography is not allowed.
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Rakuyaji temple's bell.
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About the temple's sumo connection.
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Reiki sacred tree. 霊木
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About the Reiki sacred tree. 霊木
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Rakuyaji temple office where you pay the 500 yen admission fee to enter the main Hondo hall (open 9:00 am - 5 pm, till 4 pm in winter). Pilgrims can also get the temple's autograph and seal in their pilgrimage book.
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Jizo statues
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