Travel and Adventure


Takahashi in the mountains of Okayama grew up around Bitchū Matsuyama Castle.


The small city of Takahashi in the mountains of Okayama arose following construction of a castle in 1240 and the area was frequently contested due to its strategic location. The clans in charge changed several times and its name changed from Takahashi to Matsuyama and back. During the Edo period, Takahashi became a centre for logistics using large river boats called takasebune to move goods including cattle and horses, and locally grown tea and tobacco down the Takahashi River to Kurashiki for shipment on the Inland Sea.

The town retains much of its Edo period atmosphere, with many old merchant premises close to the river, and higher up the slopes, temples and shrines. The more modern parts of town dating from the 60s and 70s are characteristic of the Shōwa period. Takahashi Christian Church, established in 1882, can still be visited. Bitchū Matsuyama Castle located high above the town is well worth the climb.

Bitchū, also more correctly spelled as Bicchū, is the old name for a region corresponding to eastern Okayama Prefecture. Bitchū is added as a prefix to Takahashi and Matsuyama to distinguish it from larger cities elsewhere with the same name. 


Name in Japanese: 備中高梁

Pronunciation: bit-chū taka-hashi

Address: Takahashi, Okayama

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