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Jōmon archaeological sites in Tohoku

HOME > Japan’s Local Treasures > Jōmon archaeological sites in Tohoku


Glimpse how the Neolithic Jōmon people lived at these newly listed World Heritage sites

Tohoku Tourism Promotion Organization



The majority of the 17 Jōmon archaeological sites, which were added to the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites in 2021, are located in Tohoku, the northern section of Japan’s main island of Honshu. The Sannai Maruyama Site in Aomori Prefecture and the other sites in the group are evidence of the culture of the Jōmon people that flourished and matured in the Japanese archipelago for nearly 10,000 years during the Neolithic age.

The Jōmon lived in permanent settlements and they hunted, fished, and gathered food from their immediate environment. They coexisted with nature as it thrived in the humid temperature climate of the Holocene epoch. In comparison Neolithic cultures in other parts of the world were based on agriculture and animal husbandry and did not have permanent settlements.

The Sannai Maruyama Site, which revealed a large settlement from the early and middle Jōmon period (approximately between 3900 BC and 2200 BC), is particularly interesting and accessible as it is within Aomori City. Visitors can view reconstructed buildings from the Jōmon village and the Sanmaru Museum which exhibits almost 1,700 artifacts discovered at the site with explanations in English.

The other Jōmon archaeological sites in Tohoku with signs and explanations available in English are: the Goshono Jōmon Site in Ichinohe, Iwate Prefecture, where the ruins of soil-covered dwellings were first discovered, and the Ōyu Stone Circles in Kazuno, Akita Prefecture, one of Japan's largest stone circles.


How to get there


 10 minutes by car from JR Shin-Aomori Station, one of the stops on the Tohoku Shinkansen Line.



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