With the aim of utilizing archaeological sites and cultural assets in Nara as a marketing resource for local industries such as tourism and education, we are planning the following activities:
- Development of smart phone applications using IT (mainly tourism applications)
- Promotion of tourism and industry through joint and collaborative efforts with local communities
- Organizing and sponsorship of events, etc.
Smart Phone Application: Nara Kofun & Heritage Tours
With its many ancient tombs, ruins, temples and shrines, Nara is a treasure trove of history that dates back to the beginning of Japan.
We developed the application that allows users to enjoy traveling to Nara’s ancient tombs and ruins, less famous temples and shrines, and beautiful nature with utilizing maps and AR on a smartphone.
Basic concept of the application
The app allows users to search for and obtain information on archaeological sites, ancient tombs, temples and shrines, etc. of their interest on their smartphones, and then visit the sites by themselves using maps and navigation systems.
- Search: You can find archaeological sites of your interest by yourself by the region or maps.
- Detailed information on archaeological sites: Detailed information on historical background, period of construction, and characteristics of archaeological sites, etc. can be viewed.
- Linked to Google Maps: The navigation function that the app automatically launches Google Maps allows you to easily reach your target destinations.
- Stories and Categories: You can enjoy several stories and themed trips about Nara’s archaeological sites, including ancient history, Kofun Period, and political background.
- Tours and Stamp Rally: Several themed tours are available, including ruins, temples and shrines. the stamp rally feature will make your visits to the ruins more enjoyable.
- My List: You can keep track of the sites, temples, and shrines you are interested in and you have visited.
Commenced developing a smartphone app
(started Jul 7, 2018)
Developed a smartphone app “Nara Kofun & Heritage Tours” and distribute it on Apple and Google stores (started distribution on Apr 5, 2019)
The Imperial Household Agency, municipalities, shrines, temples, and various organizations in Nara Prefecture were asked to provide photos to be posted on the app
(photos offered with courtesy Jun 6 – Aug 26, 2020)
Version 2 of the smartphone app “Nara Kofun & Heritage Tours” was released (with new features, such as stamp rally, notification function, etc.) (released Sep 17, 2019)
Smart Phone Application: Kashiba Cultural Assets and Sightseeing Navi (available in Japanese)
Working with Kashiba City Municipal Office, we developed the smartphone application that allows users to enjoy traveling around Kashiba City’s ancient tombs, temples, shrines, and beautiful nature.
Features (unique specifications of Kashiba Cultural Assets and Sightseeing Navi)
- Utilization of the Nara Kofun & Heritage Tours: Utilizing the features of the kofun travel app developed for our previously developed smartphone app, we developed City of Kashiba own sightseeing application.
- Joint development with Kashiba City Municipal Office: The application was developed jointly by Kashiba City Municipal Office and the Foundation, and all contents were provided by Kashiba City Municipal Office.
- Navigation of Kashiba City’s cultural assets and sightseeing courses: All courses included in the “Kashiba City Cultural Assets and Sightseeing Guide Map” published by Kashiba City Municipal Office are available for self-guided tours on the app.
- Listing of official publications: Various publications issued by Kashiba City Municipal Office, such as “Kashiba Plus”, “Mitsuba no Kashiba”, etc., can be viewed within the app.
- Visiting the Roots of Sumo: the app enables navigation to tourist interests as the birthplace of sumo (campaigned by Kashiba and other cities), and makes the “Yamato Mahoroba Walking Map” available for viewing.
Started joint development project (started Oct 7, 2020)
Signing ceremony of “Agreement on Tourism Promotion between Kashiba City and the Nara Kofun & Heritage Foundation” (held at Kashiba City Municipal Office on Mar 15, 2021)
A tourism app “Kashiba Cultural Assets and Sightseeing Navi” was released on Apple/Google stores (started distribution on April 21, 2021)
App Function on Smart Phone: Hiking Course App
In mountainous areas and depopulated areas, cell phone reception is often poor, and most map applications may have problems displaying the map correctly in the field. Therefore, we developed the application feature that displays hiking and mountain climbing courses and allows people to enjoy touring even in places where there is no signal.
- Add-on to the Foundation’s travel apps: Enhance the navigation functions of the travel apps that are developed by us, such as “Nara Kofun & Heritage Tours.”
- Offline map support: View and track hiking trails even in places where there is no cell phone signal.
- Adopt open source maps: Use copyright-free, open source map data.
Started developing a function of hike route mapping/tracking (started Dec 28, 2020)
Implemented as a navigation function for hiking courses in the Gose City Sightseeing Navi app
Note: This feature is not planned to be released as a standalone application.
Smart Phone Application: Gose City Sightseeing Navi (available in Japanese)
We have been working with the Gose City Municipal Office to develop an application that allows users to enjoy traveling around the kofuns, temples, shrines, and beautiful nature of City of Gose with offline hiking features.
Features (unique specifications of Gose City Tourist Navi)
- Utilization of the Nara Kofun & Heritage Tours: Utilizing the features of the kofun travel app developed for our previously developed smartphone app, we developed City of Gose own sightseeing application.
- Joint development with Gose City Municipal Office: The application was developed jointly by Gose City Municipal Office and the Foundation, and all contents were provided by Gose City Municipal Office.
- Navigation of Gose City’s walking/hiking courses: hiking courses included on the Gose City’s website are available for self-guided tours on the app.
- Incorporating our hiking course app: We developed the app feature that allows users to navigate hiking courses that are shown on Gose City’s website so that they can self-tour.
Started joint development project (started Mar 29, 2021)
The tourism app “Gose City Sightseeing Navi” was released on Apple/Google stores (started distribution on December 11, 2021)
- November 29, 2019: Special Tour “KatsuragiKodo Road”
Nara Bunka Soken and the Foundation cohosted the specially planned tour of visiting many historic monument such as ruins, temples, and shrines along the old Katsuragi Kodo Road in Gose-shi, Nara.
Blessed with fine weather although having a couple of rain days previously, the participants were all able to actually experience the ancient history of Japan in areas where they rarely go to see. We received positive opinions from them.