An Open Air Museum in Sapporo, Japan

Did you ever watch The Village? It’s that movie from director M. Night Shyalaman about a small isolated village in 19th century Pennsylvania. The villagers, especially the children, live in fear of nameless creatures living in the woods that surround their village.

The Historical Village of Hokkaido has nothing to do with the film but that’s exactly what it felt like walking around this place. An open-air museum on the outskirts of Sapporo, it features about 60 period structures spread out over an area of 54 hectares. All the buildings here are from the Meiji and Taisho eras (mid-19th to early 20th century) and were recreated to reflect what pioneer life in Hokkaido was like. The attention to detail is remarkable. Inside you’ll find fully furnished rooms with tools, books, pieces of equipment, even articles of clothing consistent with the era. One storehouse had fishing vessels. Others had dioramas reconstructing daily life.

So convincing was this place that it…

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