Tourism in Inuyama, Japan – The past and the present

inuyama, japan castle.

Through this project, students will learn about the tourism reform initiative and its impact on the economic vitality of Inuyama, Japan.

Project description

Inuyama, a city in Aichi Prefecture, Japan, north of the Nagoya Metropolis (Japan’s fourth most populated city) is best known for its old castle, the oldest fortress in Japan, dating back to 1440. Inuyama Castle, designated as a national treasure of Japan, was built in 1537 and is a fine example of Momoyama Period military architecture.

Besides Inuyama Castle, the city’s other attractions include the picturesque Kiso River, Meiji Mura Architectural Museum, and Urakuen Tea Garden attracts over 600 thousand visitors a year to the city.

A Sister City of Davis, CA, Inuyama City completed a major tourism reform project to boost tourism to the city in 2007. Infrastructure improvements to roads, hotels and other tourist friendly amenities were completed and since the project, tourist arrival numbers have tripled in recent years.

Through this project, students will learn about the tourism reform initiative and its impact on the economic vitality of the city. Through sharing highlights and information about the Inuyama, students will contribute to future interest and tourism, further building on the health and vibrancy of the city.

Project outcome

The project outcomes will include a documentation of tourism in the city, including a history of how the tourism project was planned, completed and the impact of the project towards improving tourist arrivals to the city.

Project details

Timing, eligibility and other details
Length of commitment About a semester; 3-5 months
Start time Fall
Level of collaboration Depends on student preference
Benefits By completing this project, students will be able to learn more about a city in Japan through the guidance of a City Council member, get to know a foreign country and its history, culture and language
Who is eligible Junior or senior year of undergraduate studies
Critical Language and Fulbright Scholarships

Students participating in this project might be interested in and eligible for the Critical Language Scholarship and the Fulbright Scholarship. Connect with the Office of Fellowships and Scholarships to learn more.

Core partners

  • Mr. Issei Shibayama, EDM ’89, Director, Inuyama Asia Friendship Association and City Council member of Inuyama, Japan. As a proud Alum of UB, he is eager to engage with current UB students and share his City and country of Japan.

Project mentor

Wei Loon Leong


International Alumni Engagement

201 Harriman Hall

Phone: (716) 645-6303


Start the project

  1. Email the project mentor using the contact information above to express your interest and get approval to work on the project. (Here are helpful tips on how to contact a project mentor.)
  2. After you receive approval from the mentor to start this project, click the button to start the digital badge. (Learn more about ELN's digital badge options.) 

Preparation activities

Once you begin the digital badge series, you will have access to all the necessary activities and instructions. Your mentor has indicated they would like you to also complete the specific preparation activities below. Please reference this when you get to Step 2 of the Preparation Phase. 

For students to be successful in this project, it will be important for them to have an understanding of the history and culture of Japan. Some online resources include: 

After familiarizing themselves with Japan, students should then understand more about the history, culture and socio-economics of Inuyama city to prepare themselves well for the project. Online resources include:

(Google translate will be helpful to translate these documents from Japanese to English)