Taro Urashima – The Japanese Rip Van Winkle

The legend of Taro Urashima is one of the oldest time travel stories around.  Dating from the year 720, it tells the story of a Japanese fisherman who meets a magical princess and lives with her for centuries, before returning home to search for his parents and family.  She gives him clear instructions on what he must do – but will he be able to find his loved ones?


Download the legend of Urashima Taro (mp3)


Read more about the legend of Urashima Taro or about the Nihon Shoki, or the Chronicles of Japan, where it first appeared.


(Or, for a child-friendly version, download the Urashima legend from Storynory).