Sarubobo is a common sight around Gifu Prefecture as it is a symbol of the Takayama area of Gifu. It is a doll traditionally fashioned from red cloth and no face that was made for local children to play with. While vaguely human in shape, sarubobo literally means “monkey baby” and the lack of a face makes it easier for a child to imagine whatever they wish. Sarubobo were also considered good luck amulets, supposedly instilling protection from evil, a happy home life and easy childbirth. Today, visitors can purchase sarubobo at many souvenir shops around Gifu, in a variety of colors if red is not your favorite.

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