Matsuo Basho was born in 1644 and lived in this house until he moved to Edo, now called Tokyo, at the age of 29. In Chogetsu-ken, a studio behind the house where he was born, Basho studied haiku and compiled his first collection of haiku. In Edo he established a new style of haiku and elevated it from a simple comical epigram to a refined form of literature. He wrote travel journals and composed many excellent haiku while traveling throughout Japan.
Haiseiden was built in 1945 to commemorate the 300th anniversary of the birth of Matsuo Basho, a famous haiku poet in the 17th century. The exterior represents his traveling clothes. Inside is his statue made of Iga-ware, one of the local specialty products. The Basho Festival is held here annually on October 12, when the best haiku, selected from many excellent works around the world, are displayed.
Minomushi-an is the only remaining hermitage of Basho's original five. Hattori Doho, one of Basho's disciples, built and presented it to Basho for his study. This building was named after the haiku which Basho gave to Doho as a present upon its completion, which is "Minomushi no ne wo kikini koyo kusa no io - Come and listen to the sound of bagworms, thatched hermitage".