O-tsumago is an attractive little hamlet just half a mile or so outside the post-town of Tsumago. The reason for the naming of O-tsumago (lit. Greater Tsumago) is unclear, however. Tsumago itself was a relatively minor post-town in the Edo period, although its position at the foot of Magome Pass perhaps did justify the establishment of an unofficial rest stop at O-tsumago, serving as a ‘spill-over’ in times of bad weather for example.
Leaving O-tsumago the route of the old Nakasendo is traced along footpaths and a narrow country road until Tsumago itself is reached after just fifteen minutes’ walking. The scenery along the way is picturesque, and many of the old farms and inns perched on the slopes of the surrounding woodland still have traditional waterwheels in operation.