Visitor InfomationExhibition ContentsMuseum Map | About Ainu 日本語CHINESE


 The Ainu culture village , which was originally in Shiraoi's urban district, was moved and restored at the shores of Lake Poroto in 1965 to form this outdoor museum to preserve and exhibit the Ainu's cultural assets. The facilities include five Chise (a thatched house), a museum, a botanical garden and an animal barn. This museum is popularly known as Porotokotan, which means a large lakeside village.


The statue of chief

 A big statue stands at the entrance of porotokotan. This is called the kotankorkur statue (the statue of the chief), and there is height 16m. It is the symbol of our museum.

Traditional Ainu folk dance

  In 1984, traditional Ainu dance was recognized as a country's significant intangible folk cultural asset and afterwards in 2009 it was registered as an intangible cultural asset of UNESCO.

 They feature songs and dances that evoke the natural splendor of the North, including iyomante rimse (a ceremonial dance for sending bears' spirits back to heaven), upopo ( a song performed by seated singers), sarorunchikap rimse (a crane dance ), emus rimse (an epic sword dance ), an Ainu musical instrument, mukkuri (mouth harp ), and ifunke (a lullaby ), which is performed to the accompaniment of mukkuri.

The Ainu Museum

 Ainu Museum, popularly known as "Porotokotan" was established in 1976 as the Shiraoi Foundation for the preservation of Ainu Culture. This cultural education facility aims to carry out comprehensive educational promotion projects, such as the transmission, preservation, research and study of Ainu culture. In 1984, the Ainu Folk Museum was added to this facility to exhibit both tangible and intangible Ainu cultural assets and to perform academic research and study. In 1990, the facility was reopened under the auspices of The Ainu Museum Foundation.




Hokkaido dogs

 The Hokkaido dog belongs to the hound breed and the Ainu used them for the hunting of bears and deer. It is believed to be a faithful dog and since it is very powerful it can fight with huge bears also. Shiba, Kishu, Shikoku, Akita, Kai etc. are some of the typical breeds of Japanese dogs and in 1937 they were identified as the protected breeds of country.

Botanical garden

 In the botanical garden, about 50 kinds of plants that Ainu used for food and medicine, etc. are grown.


 Ainu's traditional handicraft is demonstrated in the small house.

Copyright (C) AinuMuseum. All Rights Reserved.