Nagoro or now known as Nagoro Doll Village is a village in the Iya Valley on the island of Shikoku in Tokushima Prefecture, Japan. It is known for the large number of realistic dolls positioned throughout the village, which have made it a tourist attraction. The village is located on Route 439 in the Iya Valley, a remote mountainous area. It formerly had about 300 inhabitants, but the decline in Japan’s population has caused that to fall to 35 by January 2015, 30 as of August 2016, and also 27 by September 2019.
At first glance, most visitors to Nagoro Doll Village will see a sweet rural community of elderly residents spending their time blissfully tending to their gardens and fishing. When they decided to take a closer look, however, and they might be in for a scare. The villagers are actually dolls.
Nagoro is a slowly shrinking village located in the valleys of Shikoku, Japan. Populated by creepy dolls, it might make you question the reality. Its inhabitants left the village in a search of employment or died. More than 200 dolls inhabit the town. They’ve become loved by their human neighbors and are often celebrated by the community for bringing back fruitful memories of the past.
Eleven years ago, Tsukimi Ayano returned home to Nagoro. Faced with loneliness, she has populated the village with dolls, each representing a former resident. The dolls are all created single-handedly by Ayano Tsukimi. The local school is now filled with a few dozen dolls patiently waiting for class to begin. Made of straw, the bizarre dolls are dressed in old clothes.
Once working in the garden, Tsukimi made the first doll in the likeness of her father, and then she came up with the idea to replace the other family members with similar dolls. 10 years later, her work continues. Every doll is located in a place where she would resemble that person. So strolling along with the village you will find quite unique monuments either working in the field, fishing in the river, or simply sitting along the road and staring at you.
Sources: YouTube Tokyo Lens.