Walk in the footsteps of haiku master Matsuo Basho!

Spend a day in Iga City and learn about haiku master Matsuo Basho as you visit a museum that tells the story of his life, a hall commemorating his birth, one of his well-known writing retreats and a statue of him that stands in front of the train station.

Type of Trip
Day Trip
Type of Transportation
Public transportation

Basho Memorial Museum

Start your exploration of Basho’s life at the museum dedicated to his writing and travels. Peruse the extensive collection of scrolls bearing his writing and learn about his instrumental role in popularizing the haiku form in the 17th century.
Basho’s journeys around Japan were a vital part of his creative process and the maps on display the museum allow you to see the routes he took as he explored the nation seeking out inspiration for his writing. The museum is the perfect starting point on your own journey to learn about Basho’s life.

  • Basho Memorial Museum


The next stop on your haiku tour in Iga City is Haiseiden Hall, which was built to commemorate the 300th anniversary of Basho’s birth. The building has a unique design and the roof is known as the "traveler's hat", which is a reference to the writer’s extensive journeys around Japan.
Inside the hall, the monument to Basho resembles a religious shrine and is a clear example of his esteemed standing in Japanese culture. The wood and stone design is incredible and you will walk away with a better sense of what the writer’s legacy means to the people of Iga City.

  • Haiseiden

walk : 25 min 


When Basho was staying in Iga City, there were five writing retreats that he would frequent in search of inspiration. Minomushian is the last one standing and has been preserved to give visitors an opportunity to imagine Basho’s environment when he was writing haiku.
The retreat’s name comes from a verse that Basho wrote about the spot long ago and the building is still surrounded by a wonderful garden space. Walk on the same paths and look out the windows at the same garden that the haiku master gazed upon centuries ago.

  • Minomushian

walk : 15 min 

The Statue of Matsuo Basho

Your haiku tour of Iga City will come to an end at the train station where you can bid farewell to Basho himself. A statue of the great writer stands atop a concrete pillar looking out over the city of his birth in front of the station.
After learning so much about the man, seeing monuments to him and entering one of his beautifully preserved writing retreats it will be clear to you how the haiku poetry form and Matsuo Basho came to be two of Japan’s historical treasures.

  • The Statue of Matsuo Basho