PLAN:3DAYS

PRICE FROM125,000JPY

per person (for a group of 6 people)

OVERVIEW

This is a carefully crafted tour designed to give you insight into the history and traditions of Japanese sake.

Traditionally, brewing sake was not just about making alcohol, instead it has been strongly connected with shrines and temples since the ancient times. The sake brewing process used to take place in the local shrines and temples in Nara with sake dedicated as a special offering to the Gods.
On this trip, you’ll get to visit one of Nara’s World Heritage Sites known as the Kasugataisha Shrine, a breathtaking structure with a long-established history of brewing sake in their district. We’ve designed a special private tour of the shrine guided by a priest who will show you how to pray for good fortune.
You’ll also get to visit Shoryakuji Temple, the birthplace of refined Japanese sake! This temple is famous for establishing its modern sake brewing technique about 600 years ago. The temple carries on the tradition of creating the original yeast starter called, “Bodaimoto” and distributes it once a year to the surrounding local sake brewers to make their own sake at each location. Enjoy learning about this tradition from your private priest tour guide while viewing the spectacular Japanese garden maintained to perfection! Visiting the smaller local sake breweries in the area is definitely a must do when experiencing sake in Nara.
We’ll take you on a tour inside a local brewery that’s actually not open to the public!
Here, you can have a look behind the scenes followed by sake tasting! Some of the breweries are located around peaceful countryside landscapes, whereas others are established in the traditional town areas.
Walk around and enjoy exploring the contrasting atmosphere of the surrounding areas too!

During your trip, you’ll acquire knowledge and experience on the different tastes and aroma of each type of sake. You’ll even get to hear from experienced chefs on which foods complement each type of sake best. Enjoy your sake trip in Nara to the fullest!

  1. DAY01

    Today, you’ll be visiting the most popular shrine in Nara, Kasugataisha Shrine!
    Feel the peaceful and sacred atmosphere around the shrine. We have a special private tour arranged for you by a priest who will pray for a great life journey ahead of you.
    Once a year, inside the precinct, they have a tradition of observing the making of Sake created as an offering to the deities.
    After your surreal visit at the shrine, we’ll take a stroll around a traditional neighborhood called, Naramachi. This town is full of hidden gems with many old-style buildings and residences that still remain from the Edo era.
    In Naramachi, there is an old brewery that used to make Sake for Kasugataisha Shrine. Enjoy some sake tasting before heading out to a nearby shop, a very unique shop that specializes only in Nara Sake. Here you can also do sake tasting while having a fun conversation with the cheerful shop master. His level of expertise will surely leave you with a different perspective on sake. Don’t forget to try the famous “Bodaimoto” sake! This is also a great place to buy sake bottles to take home as souvenirs! Check in to your hotel around 6:00pm and rest well for another fun adventure tomorrow!


    Basic stay plan: "Setre Naramachi,” a standard hotel located in Naramachi. You’ll have the option of dinner at the hotel or out at a restaurant in Naramachi. We can definitely recommend some restaurants that serve great sake!

    Luxury stay plan: “Nipponia Hotel Nara,” a stylish hotel renovated from a Toyosawa sake brewery! Here you can enjoy a traditional style stay, access to a variety of premium sake, and an elaborate fusion-style cuisine.
  2. DAY02

    We’ll start the day having a look around a spectacular shop specializing in Nara’s traditional crafts; including pottery, lacquerware, and handcrafted glasses.
    You may even find a favorite set of sake cups to take home!
    After lunch, we’ll visit Shoryakuji Temple. This temple is known as the birthplace of refined Japanese sake, as it succeeded in establishing techniques to make refined sake that seem to transcend time and are still in use today. Long ago, this sake was considered a specialty and was highly valued by celebrities. Surprisingly, around 100 years ago this sake brand stopped brewing sake for decades.
    However, a group of local sake breweries got together and succeeded in reviving this precious “Bodaimoto” sake about 20 years ago. These days, once a year in Shoryakuji Temple the original yeast starter is created and distributed to local sake brewers to make their own “Bodaimoto” sake.
    Enjoy your private tour guided by a wise priest who will inform you on the intricacies of the sake and the interesting history of the temple. Don’t forget to take a moment to appreciate the fresh air and serene energy of the trees surrounding the temple.
    Next, we’ll stop by one of the local sake breweries that receives their “Bodaimoto” from Shoryakuji Temple. Meet a young energetic brewer who took over his father’s business and enjoy a private tour of the brewery followed by sake tasting. The brewery is located in a beautiful village surrounded by picturesque rice paddies where he and his growers cultivate rice for sake. Check in for a relaxing evening at your hotel.


    Basic stay plan: “The Kashihara,” a standard hotel in Kashihara City.

    Luxury stay plan: “Ubusuna no Sato Tomimoto,” a Japanese style villa renovated from the former residence of Kenkichi Tomimoto, a famous pottery artist. Also, known as the first National Living Treasure in Japan. Sake marriage stay plan.
  3. DAY03

    In the morning, we’ll head out to visit the famous Omiwa Jinja, one of the oldest shrines in Japan. The sake deity of sake breweries is enshrined here. In November, sake brewers from all around the country gather here to pray to the sake deity and receive a “Sugidama,” which is a ball of fresh cedar. This cedar ball symbolizes that new sake has been freshly brewed. Notice the huge cedar ball hung in front of the main shrine!
    Next, we’ll take you to another unique sake brewery for a behind the scenes tour and sake tasting! Learn how each sake brewery within Nara has developed their own distinctive ways of brewing sake based on the local resources, climate and environment. Let’s head out to a nice restaurant for a relaxing lunch on the way to Kashihara City, conveniently located with easy access to Osaka and Wakayama.
    We hope you had a wonderful time and look forward to traveling with you again!

PRICE DETAILS

    PRICE

    125,000 JPY per person (for a group of 6 people)

    PRICE INCLUDES

    2 Nights’ Accommodation 
    2 Breakfasts / 2 Lunches / 2 Dinners
    3 days chartered car with Driver
    Admission fees
    Activity fees
    English-speaking guide
    Full support from your Travel
    Concierge before, during and after your trip

    CAR

    1-2 travelers: Sedan
    3-6 travelers: Jumbo taxi
    Driver+English-Speaking Tour
    Guide

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