Japan’s Top 10 Instagram-Worthy Locations

13.December.2018 | SPOT

Snaplace is a website that analyses posts on social media they they deem ‘Instagrammable.’ They have close to 6,000 spots listed on their website, and they have selected the very best from their data this year to make two Top 10 lists for 2018 – one for Instagram and one for Twitter.

 

Instagram Top 10


1st Place: Yasaka Kōshin-dō (Kyoto, Kyoto Prefecture)
Coming in at No. 1 is Yasaka Kōshin-dō, a small temple in Kyoto dedicated to Shomen Kongo, a guardian warrior, and three wise monkeys. The temple is known by locals for the colourful cloth balls that decorate the site called “kukurizaru” on which worshippers write their wishes and hang them. There is a rental kimono place close to this temple, making it the perfect spot to snap some photos.

 

2nd Place: Kawagoe Hikawa Shrine (Kawagoe, Saitama)
Kawagoe Hikawa Shrine is a popular spot with Japanese women for being a shrine of love. There, you can get your hands on special charms and fortunes based on the East Asian concept of the ‘red string of fate’ which binds together two people destined to meet. There’s a stylish cafe and in summer they set up a corridor of wind chimes as shown in the photo. There’s lots of places to take pictures here.

 

3rd Place: BE KOBE (Kobe, Hyogo)
The “BE KOBE” sign was built in April 2017 and was seen much across student social media during its first year. You can see lots of high school students take photos here on school trips to Kobe from October to March. This spot was initially popular with just students but its recognition began to spread amongst the masses and today taking a picture there is a must-do when visiting Kobe. On a busy day you can be waiting over 30 minutes to get one.

 

4th Place: La Collina (Omihachiman, Shiga)
La Collina is a confectionery factory that sells a range of exclusive sweets and confections including baumkuchen. This cute place looks like something out of a fairy tale and is noted for its post-worthy treats and chic, otherworldly architecture. Its spread on social media came from the fact that the building can easily make it look like you’ve been transported to another world. It has a real Studio Ghibli vibe to it with its grassy roof and surrounding natural environment.

 

5th Place: Sakushima (Nishio, Aichi)
6th Place: 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art (Kanazawa, Ishikawa)
7th Place: Sarushima (Yokosuka, Kanagawa)
8th Place: Sankoinari Shrine (Inuyama, Aichi)
9th Place: Site Of Reversible Destiny (Yoro, Gifu)
10th Place: Shima Mediterranean Village (Shima, Mie)

 

Twitter Top 10

1st Place: Ōkunoshima (Takehara, Hiroshima)
Ōkunoshima is sometimes called “Poison Gas Island” for its role in World War II as a poison gas factory. But it is more known for being called “Rabbit Island” due to the number of feral rabbits living there. Around 700 roam the island, so it’s become a popular spot for taking photos.

2nd Place: Fukui Prefectural Dinosaur Museum (Katsuyama, Fukui)
This museum is the biggest dinosaur museum in Japan and is renowned across Asia for its dinosaur fossil and specimen display. The gigantic realistic dinosaur models have hit it big on Japanese social media.

 

3rd Place: Ushiku Daibutsu (Ushiki, Ibaraki)
Ushiku Daibutsu was originally the tallest statue in the world from 1993-2002, even making it into the Guinness World Records. As of 2018 it is now one of the five tallest statues in the world. A photo of this Buddha looks like something from another world which led to its surging popularity on social media.

 

4th Place: Yasui Konpiragu Shrine (Kyoto, Kyoto Prefecture)
The Yasui Konpiragu Shrine is home to a large stone which is associated with binding good relationships tighter and severing bad ones. You first write your wishes on a piece of paper. If you want to initiate a good relationship then you must crawl through the hole in the stone from front to back while holding the paper. To end a bad relationship you crawl from back to front. The ritual is completed by sticking the paper onto the stone.

 

5th Place: Shimizu Koen (Noda, Chiba)
6th Place: Sand Museum (Tottori, Tottori Prefecture)
7th Place: Mikane-Jinja Shrine (Kyoto, Kyoto Prefecture)
8th Place: Nanzo-in (Kasuya District, Fukuoka)
9th  Place: North Safari Sapporo (Sappoto, Hokkaido)
10th  Place: Momotaro Shrine (Inuyama, Aichi)

 

Use this list as reference when in Japan to get the very best photos for showing off your trip!

RECOMMENDED ENTRIES

  • Rainbow sweets are now trending. As well as being very popular overseas, a large variety of shops that sell rainbow sweets have also been opening in Japan. Today we’ll be looking at rainbow sweets that you can eat in Tokyo! The impact of their vivid colours makes them perfect for an Instagram shot!

     

     

    LE SHINER (Takeshita Street, Harajuku)

    This shop has appeared many times on TV for its Instagram-worthy aesthetics. The pink bear is a real eye-catcher! The exterior is also cute ♡

     

    LE SHINER レインボーアイスクリーム

    The shop’s speciality is the rainbow soft serve ice cream. Colourful rainbow ice cream spirals around the base of pink ice cream.

     

     

    Their colourful menu also includes rainbow cake sticks, rainbow sandwiches and much more!

     

    Further information: https://www.moshimoshi-nippon.jp/ja/93444

     

    ◼︎Information

    LE SHINER (レ・シヤナー)

    Address: COXY176 Building 1st floor, 1-7-10, Jingumae, Shibuya, Tokyo

    Opening hours: Weekdays – 11:00 — 18:00 / Weekends & national holidays – 10:30 — 19:00

    Access: 3-minute walk from Harajuku station Takeshita Street exit (JR Yamanote line)/ 4-minute walk from the 5th exit of Meiji-Jingumae Station (Tokyo Metro Chiyoda line)

    TEL:070-1361-8686

     

     

     

    Totti Candy Factory (Takeshita Street, Harajuku)

     

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    Totti Candy Factory has cute petit cakes, cotton candy and much more. There must be so many people who have tried this! Whatever you may have heard about this place, their showstopper is definitely the huge colourful cotton candy!

    Totti Candy Factory

    If you’re looking for a present or souvenir, we recommend you get one in a cup!

     

    ◼︎Information

    Totti Candy Factory

    Address: RYU Apartment 2nd floor, 1-16-5, Jingumae, Shibuya, Tokyo

    Opening hours: Weekdays – 11:00 — 20:00

    Weekends & national holidays: 10:00 — 20:00

    Access: 3-minute walk from Harajuku station Takeshita Exit (JR Yamanote line)

    TEL:03-3403-7007

    URL: http://www.totticandy.com/

     

     

     

    KAWAII MONSTER CAFE, HARAJUKU

    The KAWAII MONSTER CAFE is a new famous spot in Harajuku that has attracted many from all over the world.

     

    KAWAII MONSTER CAFE HARAJUKU カラフルポイズンパフェ

    One of their specialities is the colourful poison parfait, which is a photogenic masterpiece that is topped with ice cream, fruit, and even a piece of roll cake.

     

    KAWAII MONSTAR CAFE

    There are even rainbow cakes, rainbow pasta dishes, and much more!

     

    Further information: https://www.moshimoshi-nippon.jp/ja/64096

     

    ◼︎Information

    KAWAII MONSTER CAFE(カワイイモンスターカフェ)

    Address: YM Square 4th floor, 4-31-10, Jingumae, Shibuya, Tokyo

    Opening hours: Lunch: 11.30 — 16:30 (last orders: 16:00 ), dinner: 18:00 — 22:30 (last orders: 22:00) (Monday — Saturday and the day before national holidays

    ※ 90-minute seating slots, last entry: 15:30

    Sundays & national holidays 11:00 — 20:00(Last orders: 19:30)

    No regular closing days. It is possible that customers will not be allowed to enter the cafe when certain events take place.

    Access: 1-minute walk from the 5th exit of Meiji-Jingumae station (Subway)/ 5-minute walk from JR Harajuku station Omotesandō exit

    TEL: 03-5413-6142 ※It is possible to make reservations(Excluding Weekends and national holidays)

    URL:http://kawaiimonster.jp/day/pc/

     

     

     

    LOLA’S Cupcakes (Roppongi, Harajuku)

     

    It is possible to say that LOLA’S Cupcakes are the instigators for the rainbow sweets trend. Their cupcakes may be famous, but their rainbow cakes are also a popular choice!

     

    Seven different colour layers of cake are sandwiched together with buttercream.

     

    ◼︎Information

    LOLA’S Cupcakes

     

    Harajuku

    Address: Cascade, 2nd floor, 1-10-37, Jingumae, Shibuya, Tokyo

    Opening hours: 11:00 — 20:00

    Access: 2-minute walk from 3rd exit Meiji-Jingumae station (Tokyo Metro Fukutoshin line/ Chiyoda line), 2-minute walk from Harajuku station Omotesando exit (JR Yamanote line)

    TEL:03-6447-1127

     

    Roppongi

    Address: Roppongi Hills Metro Hut floor B1, 6-4-1, Roppongi, Minato, Tokyo

    Opening hours: 11:00 — 21:00

    Access: Direct access from the concourse of Roppongi station (Tokyo Metro Hibiya line), 4-minute walk from Roppongi station (Toei Ōedo Line)

    TEL:03-3475-1127

     

    URL:http://lolascupcakes.co.jp/Default.aspx

     

     

     

    A WORKS (Gakugei-daigaku Station)

     

    Haruka Uminoさん(@umiharu428)がシェアした投稿

    What makes this cafe appear so Instagram-worthy is its resemblance to a traditional Japanse-style house. In this popular cafe, all the cakes are made by hand. Sales end once all the cakes are gone.

     

    ☺︎ n a g i ☺︎さん(@i_am___nagi)がシェアした投稿

    This place has more to offer than just a rainbow-coloured cheesecake — there are also unicorn cakes, Cheshire cat cakes and much more ♡

     

    ◼︎Information

    Address: 3-3-7, Takaban, Mguro, Tokyo

    Opening hours: Monday, Tuesday Friday & Sunday:  11:30 — 22:00

    Thursdays:  11:30 — 16.00

    Saturdays:  11:30 — 23:00(Last orders: 22:00)

    Regular closing days: Wednesdays

    Access: 2-minute walk from Gakugei-daigaku Station (Toyoko line)

    TEL:050-5570-3475

    URL:http://aworks.m-cobo.com/menu.html

     

     

     

    NEW NEW YORK CLUB (Azabu-Jūban/ Jiyūgaoka station)

     

    @ab_fried.shrimpがシェアした投稿

    This shop was built for those who want to experience and taste New York culture in a New York atmosphere. Their signature treat is the rainbow-coloured bagel. However, they are only available on the weekends!

     

    ◼︎Information

    NEW NEW YORK CLUB

     

    Azabu-Jūban

    Address: 3-8-5, Azabu-Jūban, Minato, Tokyo

    Opening hours: 9:00 — 18:00 (Sales will end once all have been sold)

    No regular closing days

    Access: 3-minute walk from the A1 exit of Azabu-Jūban station (Tokyo Metro Namboku line)

    TEL:03-6873-1537

    Jiyūgaoka

    Address: TF 2-15-14, MidorigaokaMeguro, Tokyo 

    Opening hours: 11:30 — 20:00

    Regular closing days: Tuesday

    Access: 5-minute walk from Jiyūgaoka station

    TEL:03-6459-5669

     

    URL:http://newnewyorkclub.com/

     

     

    What are you waiting for? Get your hands on some rainbow sweets!

     
  • A photogenic dreamland, “TOKYO ICE CREAM LAND” which offers photogenic ice creams suitable to be uploaded on your Instagram!

    14.October.2017 | SPOT

    Tokyo Photogenic Team will hold a most-advanced, dreamy photogenic ice cream event which will offer ice creams suitable to be uploaded to your Instagram called “TOKYO ICE CREAM LAND” for a limited time offer from the 15th of December to the 17th.

    main

    Young females using Instagram (16 to 24 years old) often visit various photogenic spots to upload photos and videos to their SNS. Many young females are requesting for information RE: sightseeing spots and restaurants which are popular with Instagramers. One can create an “ideal timeline” by uploading quality contents to SNS. One of the most popular photogenic items is ice cream.

    sub1

    The event will set up many kinds of photo spots created under the theme of “ice cream,” not just offering ice cream to the customers.

    sub2

    It can be said that the event is a dreamy kingdom of “ice cream” with many photogenic spots which young females will love. A lecture tour of teaching how to take photos will also be held.

    sub3

    Let’s upload nice photos to SNS in the most advanced photogenic dreamland.

     

    ■Information 
    Event name: TOKYO ICE CREAM LAND

    Date: 12,15 to 17

    (15th – 19:00 to 21:00, 16th to 17th – 9:00 to 21:00)

    Venue: Omotesando SO-CAL LINK GALLERY.

    Address: 〒150-0001 4-9-8, Jingumae, Shibuyaku, Tokyo

    Access: 3 minutes by walk from Tokyo Metro “Omotesando” Station, 7 minutes by walk from “Meiji Jingumae” Station

     

    Fees: Pre-ordered ticket 2,000 yen, normal ticket 3,000 yen (the quantity of the ticket is limited)

    First-come-first-serve-basis, limited time offer – 45 per session (the time might differ according to the situation of the reservation)

     

    Ticket can be bought from here↓

    http://ptix.at/HWlsJi

     

    ※Please enter the discount code (TIC7) if you want to purchase a pre-order ticket so that you can receive a discount. (pre-order ticket must be purchased before 10,31. The number of the tickets is 1,000)

     

    Official Twitter: https://twitter.com/TILofficail

    Official Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/ice_land2017/?hl=ja

  • Fukuoka Castle becomes a photo spot! –“Light Festival in Fukuoka Castle Ruins”

    28.December.2017 | SPOT

    “Light Festival in Fukuoka Castle Ruins”is now being held inside the grounds of Maizuru Park / Fukuoka Castle ruins in Fukuoka Prefecture. Fukuoka Castle is famous for its beautiful stone walls. The castle’s stone walls have now become an

    light-art space. Light projections onto the wall move as people get close to and touch the stone wall.

    1 (2) copy

     

    teamLab is a creation group comprised of programming, CG, mathematics and other specialists. They are an ultra-technologist group of creators. Setting their aims on exploring a new relationship between man and nature, they cross over the boundaries of art, science, technology and creativity.

    The venue for this festival, Fukuoka Castle was built in 7 years starting in 1601. It is the biggest castle in Kyushu and is a nationally designated historic site. The castle is comprised of the main enclosure, the second enclosure and the third enclosure. The stone walls are a prominent part of this castle and so it is sometimes called a “stone castle.”This castle’s stone walls are very beautiful and they are constructed in four layers making of a large-scaled castle.

    teamLab is calling this a “Digitalized Nature, Digitalized City” project. Why not come and view and experience this festival!
    AFnlFlowers, Symbiotic Lives in the Stone Wall – Fukuoka Castle Ruins

     

    Featured Works

    <Resisting and Resonating Ovoids and Trees>

    The light-emitting ovoids scattered throughout the castle ruins and the trees.

    The light-emitting ovoids and the light on the trees are independent of each other. Yet, as the lights become brighter and then become dimmer, it looks as though they are breathing. The propagating lighting creates a resonating sound which spreads out and disappears. In other words, if a wave of light resonates towards you it means that there is a person over there. By entering this art space you will become more fully aware that there is another person entering your same space.

     

    <Animals of Flowers, Symbiotic Lives in the Stone Wall – Fukuoka Castle Ruins>

    Ruins of Daitenshudai – a stone wall 60 meters in length and 8.5 meters in height. In various animal bodies, flowers are born, bloom then scatter and fade away. Furthermore, if people touch the animals the flowers scatter. When all the flowers have scattered, the animal fades away.

     
    <Breathing, Resonating Stone Wall – Fukuoka Castle Ruins>

    All of the 630 meter stone walls of Fukuoka Castle are lit up. The lights on the stone walls flicker as if they are breathing. Furthermore, the lighting on the main stone wall looks as though it is responding to the artwork, “Resisting and Resonating Ovoids and Trees.” It shines brightly, spreads and then fades.

    <Stone Steps of Oblivion – Fukuoka Castle>

    The stone steps leading up to Shoten Shukaku of Fukuoka Castle are lit up. When people come close to the steps the lights get brighter and sound is emitted.

    <Spatial Calligraphy in a Stone Wall – Fukuoka Castle Ruins>

    Fukuoka Castle is sometime referred to as the“Stone Castle.”On the stone walls of Fukuoka Castle’s Daitenshudai Ruins, is an open space for “spatial calligraphy.”Here a never-ending calligraphy work appears on the stone walls.

    “Special calligraphy” means to write on an open space. The depth and speed of the strokes create a special power. One can gain a new insight into the power of calligraphy by viewing this artwork.

    2 (1) copy
    Here is an experience-based art project that both adults and children can enjoy. Why not go and visit this “Light Festival in Fukuoka Castle Ruins.”

    ■Information

    “Light Festival in Fukuoka Castle Ruins” 2017-2018

    Address: Fukuoka Castle Ruins 1 Maizuru Park Jonai, Chuo-ku, Fukuoka-shi, Fukuoka Prefecture
    Festival duration: 2017 December 1st (Fri.) ~ 2018 January 28th (Sun.) *no holiday during this period

    Open: 18:00 – 22:00 (last entry 21:30)

    Admission: Adults 1000 yen  Junior and senior high students 600 yen   children 300 yen  * 3-years and younger are free

    Sponsored by “Light Festival in Fukuoka Castle Ruins Planning Committee”

    URL:https://www.teamlab.art/jp/e/fukuoka-castle/

     

RELATED ENTRIES

  • Ace Hotel Kyoto Commemorates 1st Anniversary With Yu Nagaba Exhibition

    16.June.2021 | FASHION / SPOT

    Ace Hotel Kyoto marked its 1st anniversary on June 11 since opening. In celebration of hitting the milestone, the hotel is collaborating with Japanese artist Yu Nagaba by displaying his work at its gallery until June 30. The works displayed are of the sights and people that Nagaba saw and penned in a memo pad while staying at Ace Hotel Kyoto. All of the illustrations were made for this exhibition and so they are being exhibited for the first time. One of the pieces is also being sold at stickers in the hotel’s shop.

     

    Yu Nagaba‘s work

     

    Yu Nagaba | Comment

    “After I heard whispers that Ace Hotel was setting up in Kyoto, I hoped I could do something, so I was happy to take part in this project, but I also spent my time wondering what I could draw, and no ideas came to mind. After pondering I went to find inspiration by deciding to stay at Ace Hotel. I drew what came to mind during my time there as I walked the streets of Kyoto and spent time at the hotel. I drew a total of 49 illustrations in my memo pad. I painted six of my favourites on canvas. I hope people can get a feel for my experiences of Kyoto in these pieces.”

  • Experience a Bath Like Never Before in a Luxurious Private Space at Yadoru KYOTO HANARE

    15.June.2021 | SPOT

    Yadoru KYOTO HANARE is a hotel in Kyoto that blends seamlessly into the town, offering a stay experience that’s like living there. For guests who use their baths, they have introduced a new selection of five ingredients to be put into the bath like bath salts. Each comes with a different effect, enhancing your bathing experience beyond getting clean.

     

    Yadoru KYOTO HANARE is continuing to enforce precautions against the spread of COVID-19 so guests can enjoy getting away from home to relax and unwind safely. The hotel has and continues to enjoy many guests during this time who are seeking out some healing. One of the biggest selling points for guests is the hotel’s bathing experience. With that in mind, they have set up the Yadoru YUAMI service which allows guests to try a variety of bathing products made by local Kyoto businesses.

     

    ‘Yuami’ is an old Japanese expression for getting in the bath. The word ‘yadoru’ in the hotel’s name is also an old phrase meaning ‘to stay at a lodging on your travels.’ Yadoru KYOTO HANARE is wanting to have its site feel even more like a traditional Kyoto townhouse for guests to experience, so they are now using the word ‘YUAMI’ as part of their services.

     

    With Yadoru YUAMI, guests can pick from five different bath products, each wrapped in pouches. Each offers a completely different bathing experience with different benefits and fragrances.

     

    1. Sake Lees

    Sake lees from Kyoto’s long-standing and historical sake brewery Sasaki Shuzou. Massage the lees in the bathtub while they are still in the pouch to create a milky white water that fills the bathroom with the fragrant smell of sake lees. The ingredients in the lees have a moisturising effect, improve blood circulation, and leave skin looking beautiful.

     

    2. Gyokuro Green Tea

    The Kyoto Distillery stands as Japan’s first establishment specialising in gin. One of their gins is called Ki no Bi, a Japanese craft gin. Its smell and taste is the result of a combination of 11 kinds of botanical products including gyokuro green tea, junpier berry, and hinoki cypress, all of which are featured individually on this list. Gyokuro is a type of high-grade Japanese green tea and contains theanine which stimulates relaxing, making it perfect for unwinding after a long day.

     

    3. Juniper Berry

    Juniper berry is an indispensable ingredient in making craft gin. This bathing product is made with the type that’s actually used in making Ki no Bi craft gin. When submerged in the water, the air is filled with the woody, relaxing, and inviting scent of gin.

     

    4. Hinoki Cypress

    This bathing powder is also made with the same hinoki cypress used in Ki no Bi which, when put in the water, emits the smells of a forest. Hinoki cypress contains phytoncide which has a relaxation effect, calming the autonomic nervous system and blood pressure.

     

    5. Matcha

    Matcha is the quintessential flavour of Kyoto. Guests who check in at Yadoru KYOTO HANARE are offered a cup. They can also bathe in it with Yadoru YUAMI.

  • These Disney Ceramic Teacups and Plates Are Traditional Kiyomizu Wares From Kyoto

    07.June.2021 | FASHION

    Asahido is now selling a collection of Disney-inspired ceramics made using a traditional Japanese pottery technique known as Kiyomizu which originated in Kyoto.

    Winnie the Pooh Hundred Acre Wood Teacup

    This collection of teacups features hand drawn designs of Winnie the Pooh and his friends relaxing in their home of the Hundred Acre Wood. They are dyed indigo using a traditional dyeing technique known as gosu which makes the colour run deep into the design. There are cups to pick from, one big and one small and both with different designs. More details here (in Japanese).

    Mickey & Minnie Traditional Dyed Pattern Mugs

    These smiley teacups are made using the same dyeing technique and feature Mickey and Minnie made from collages of traditional Japanese patterns that have long been used in Kyoto.

    Disney Princess Plates

    Seven Disney Princesses have been feauted in this hand-painted Kiyomizu ware plate collection, all of which are lined with gorgeous colours including gold. They make for beautiful decorations for any Disney fan’s room.

    Mickey & Minnie Kiyomizu Dolls

    “Rakuyaki” is the name of the hand-mouldered pottery technique used to crafts these Mickey and Minnie Mouse dolls, one which has been used since the Taisho Period. Compared to the other ceramics on this list, these dolls are baked at a lower temperature, giving the colours a softer look. Red and black are classic colour combinations used in this technique, so Mickey and Minnie were the perfect candidates. Only 100 of each will be sold.

  • The Promised Neverland x Hotel Keihan Room Plan Collaboration Begins

    05.June.2021 | ANIME&GAME / SPOT

    Hotel Keihan launched a new guest room plan in collaboration with the anime series The Promised Neverland at its Tokyo, Kyoto, Osaka, Nagoya, Sendai, and Sapporo branches on Tuesday. It also released a collection of exclusive merchandise which can be bought at each hotel’s front desk.

    Guest Rooms

     

    Exclusive Merch Line-Up

    Pins | ¥550 Each (Tax Included)

    Key Rings | ¥550 Each (Tax Included)

    Lobby display

    The hotel plan was originally scheduled to take place for three months but has been extended by a further month to accommodate for travel restrictions as well as guest demand. New prices have also been introduced to make it more accessible to people. Fans of the anime series can get their hands on a range of items not available anywhere else too including pins, key rings, folders, and more.

     

    The hotel room designs are inspired by both seasons of The Promised Neverland and come with life-size panels, wall decorations, and more, so fans can look forward to getting sucked into the world of the anime series.

     

    (C)白井カイウ・出水ぽすか/集英社・約束のネバーランド製作委員会

  • Michelin Star Restaurant and Sushi Bar in Kyoto Get Added to Hometown Tax Service

    02.June.2021 | FOOD / SPOT

    Furunavi, a Japanese website that offers the hometown tax service, has added two restaurants in Kyoto to its listings. Hometown tax allows taxpayers to donate to any municipality and receive tax cuts.

     

    Due to COVID-19, the number of tourists and travellers in Kyoto has meant that major tourist sites and restaurants have seen a lack of visitors. In response to this, Furunavi is collaborating with Kyoto City using its ‘Furunavi Gourment Point’ scheme that lets people dine at restaurants and eateries in the city while enjoying tax deductions.

     

    Kikunoi Roan and Sushi Rakumi are two restaurants that have been added to Furunavi’s service.

     

    Kyoto x Kikunoi Roan

    Kikunoi Roan is a Michelin two-star restaurant located just a little down from Shijo-dori and Kiyamachi-dori by the business district of Takase River. When stepping through the noren entrance curtain of the concrete building, you’re met with a quiet tranquility that makes you forget you’re even in the big bustling city. The restaurant’s counter seats are popular as you get to watch the chefs prepare the food before you. It’s a compact space that brings customers close together. More details on Furunavi here.

     

    Kyoto x Sushi Rakumi

    Sushi Rakumi is a Michelin one-star sushi restaurant situated beside Shirakawa River. This counter-style sushi bar seats just eight people at a time. The chefs are skilled in many different forms of sushi making, all of which capture the delicious taste of Kyoto cuisine. The sushi toppings are all sourced from Kyoto, Toyosu, and Yaizu. Enjoy a unique selection of innovative sushi courses. More details on Furunavi here.

  • Survival Camping Trips Open on Japan’s Deserted Tsumaga Island

    01.June.2021 | SPOT

    Job Live, who run the Unpopulated Island Project, opened bookings for the next location of their Survival Plan last month which places people on Tsumaga Island – an island home to not a single human being. This is the second island to make the project following Jino Island in Wakayama Prefecture.

    Tsumaga Island is enveloped by the gorgeous blue ocean

    The pier where guests are dropped off at Tsumaga Island

    Shota Gima is challenging people to 30 days survival as part of the project

    The island is only accessible via charter boat

    You’ll have to catch and prepare your own food

    There are traces of people who used to live here

    There’s also a private beach available to one group per day

    Tsumaga Island is part of the city of Iki in Nagasaki and can be reached in as little as 5-minutes from Indoji Port. It was formerly used for rice cultivation and people lived there peacefully, but in 2002, its final permanent resident left the island.  The island is in a region where the Sea of Japan and Tsushima Current meet. The area is rich with sea life, home to many species of fish and abundant with plankton. It has long been known as something of a holy grounds for fishing amongst Japanese fishers. Campers on the island will catch and prepare their very own fresh fish.

     

    30 Days Survival on a Deserted Island

    The 30-day survival camping plan hopes to revitalise the city of Iki by using its unpopulated island. Shota Gima, a man from Okinawa, desired to be a part of this project and decided to move to Iki Island. He too is currently on a mission to survive on the island for 30 days and has been since May 13. He hopes to make it until June 30, and hopes that his efforts will spark people’s interest in getting involved.

     

    Campers will arrive on the island and will need to prepare their own food, use bamboo to cook rice, and everything else that goes into surviving on an unmanned island. You can check Shota’s progress on the official Tsumaga Island social media pages below.

  • Kyoto’s Ace Hotel Celebrates 1 Year Anniversary With Special Hotel Plan

    31.May.2021 | SPOT

    Ace Hotel Kyoto will commemorate its first anniversary on June 11, 2021. The hotel opened on the site of the historical former Kami Branch of the Kyoto Central Telephone Office which was completely renovated and refurbished. The hotel takes on an ‘East Meets West’ theme with elements of art and culture found throughout. As part of the celebration, the 98-year-old Samiro Yukino, a dyer and the man responsible for creating the hotel’s logo, has made sign posters and will display 242 photos from his immense collection of 17,000 photographs he has taken over the years in 10 guest rooms as part of the special hotel plan.

    Ace Hotel Kyoto Tatami Suite

    Ace Hotel Kyoto Standard Twin

    Samiro Yunoki

    Ace Hotel displays works of art from artists from both Japan and abroad all around the building, from the hotel’s iconic logo to dye work, paintings decorating the guest rooms, eye-catching tapestries, and more. Despite the pandemic which began last year, Ace Hotel has enjoyed many guests staying there. In celebrating of their first anniversary, they are releasing offering their ‘We Are One’ package for guests booking Suite rooms.

     

    Ace Hotel ranked No. 9 in the ‘Most Popular New Hotels’ in TripAdvisor’s 2021 Traveller’s Choice Best of the Best Hotels. It was also the only Japanese hotel to rank in the list.

  • Castella Pong Pong x Mottram Release New Drink in Kyoto

    25.May.2021 | FOOD / SPOT

    The Taiwanese castella cake shop Pong Pong and Japanese bubble tea brand Mottram teamed up to release their new ‘Pong Pong on the Mottram Milk’ beverage at the Kawaramachi branch of Pong Pong in Kyoto on Tuesday.

     

    Pong Pong is a shop specialising in the Taiwanese-style of castella, a type of cake originating from Japan. It has stores at Osaka Namba, Kobe Sannomiya, Osaka Kuzuha Mall, and Kyoto Kawaramachi. The castella are made fresh, are fluffy like a cloud, and never fail to sell out.

     

    The castella are made with lots of meringue and are airy. They are cooked slowly for 90-minutes and have a rich eggy flavour with a fluffiness akin to a chiffon cake.

     

    Pong Pong x Mottram’s Menu

     

    Pong Pong on the Mottram Milk | ¥860 Each (Tax Included)

     

     

    The store is limiting the Pong Pong on the Mottram Milk to just 50 servings per day. There are two types: one made with brown sugar milk and another with Uji matcha milk.

     

    Machi Bura Pong Pong (Plain) | ¥400 (Tax Included)



    Machi Bura Pong Pong (Matcha) | ¥450 (Tax Included)

     

    The Machi Bura Pong Pong are perfect for snacking on while strolling around Kyoto.

     

    May and June exclusive Pong Pong

    Matcha White Chocolate Pong Pong | ¥860 (Tax Included)

     

     

    Cooked slowly for 90 minutes with specially-selected matcha and white chocolate for a tasty and fluffy finish.

    Fuwa Shuwa Taiwan Castella Pong Pong | ¥700 (Tax Included)

     

     

    A large-size plain castella baked slowly for 90 minutes. Hot, fluffy, and kids will love it too.

     

    Moko Shuwa Cream Castella – Fresh Cream Pong Pong | ¥860 (Tax Included)

     

     

    This one is stuffed with smooth fresh cream to create a different kind of castella experience.

     

    If you’re in Kyoto, be sure to visit Pong Pong in Kawaramachi to try the ‘Pong Pong on the Mottram Milk’ collab beverage.

  • Lemon Lovers Unite at ANTENOR’s Lemon Festa

    25.May.2021 | FOOD

    Japanese patisserie ANTENOR, whose roots begin in Kobe, began its summer Lemon Festa on Thursday which is set to run until August 31 for the season of warm weather, serving up a special lemon-themed menu.

     

    The Refreshing Line-Up

    Lemon Cream Sandwich | ¥864 (Tax Included)

     

    A refreshing lemon cream sandwich biscuit stuffed with sweet and sour lemon cream and dacquoise. Lemon peel is added for a slightly bitter bite.

     

    Lemon Cream Sandwich Assortment | ¥1,620 (Tax Included)

     

    An assortment containing the lemon cream sandwich as well as a lemon-flavoured white chocolate sandwich biscuit.

     

     Summer Baked Goods Set | ¥2,268 (Tax Included)

     

    This set includes the two above-mentioned desserts along with another chocolatey type of lemon sandwich biscuit.

    Lemon Tarts | Small ¥519 – Whole ¥2,106 (Tax Included)

     

    The lemon tarts are all handmade with lemon cream and lemon peel. The tarts are topped with a flower for a touch of elegance. This dessert is refreshing and satisfying like fresh lemon so is perfect for the summer season.

     

    Setonai Lemon Cheesecake | ¥540 (Tax Included)

     

     

    This cheesecake is made with cream cheese from Hokkaido and a jam made from lemons from the Seto Inland Sea. Moist, fluffy, and delicious.

     

    Don’t miss ANTENOR’s Lemon Festa in Japan.

  • Parfait Inspired by Kyoto Zen Garden Arrives at AMAN KYOTO

    19.May.2021 | FOOD / SPOT

    The Kyoto-based luxury resort and spa AMAN KYOTO is now serving a special parfait for spring and early summer until June 30 which is inspired by traditional Japanese zen gardens.

    Zen Garden Parfait

    The Living Pavilion by Aman

    Situated quietly in a secret garden at the heart of a forest, AMAN KYOTO is just a stone’s throw from Kyoto’s famous golden Kinkaku-ji Temple. This secluded spot is home to abundant nature with green filling your vision at every turn.

     

    The Zen Garden Parfait is enjoyed at the resort’s dining space, The Living Pavilion. The sponge of the cake and the cookies are made with matcha and made to look like the moss of a zen garden. The delicious ‘stones’ are made from houjicha tea cookies, while the crunchy cocoa-flavoured cat tongue biscuits are reminiscent of trees. White chocolate sits hidden underneath the garden panna cotta while fragrant matcha tiramisu, which is made from organic matcha from Uji, helps to complete that garden look. Other sweet additions include rich matcha cream, a nine-layered tiramisu, yuzu ice cream, yuzu jam, and more.



    The parfait is served in an original matcha bowl made by Japanese ceramics artist George Nakamura.

  • Hydrangea Matcha Parfait Gets Served For Spring at Kyoto Tea Shop

    18.May.2021 | FOOD / SPOT

    Japanese Uji tea shop Itohkyuemon broughr back its seasonal Hydrangea Parfait to the menu at three of its stores last Monday.

    Hydrangea Parfait

    Hydrangea Tea Party

    Kyoto’s city of Uji, where Itohkyuemon’s main branch is based, is home to Mimuroto Temple which is famous for its hydrangea flowers. The temple always bustles during the springtime rainy season. It’s around this time that people can be waiting up to 3 hours for a seat at Itohkyuemon. Their Hydrangea Parfait is their most popular parfait, never failing to create a buzz on Japanese social media. It contains hydrangea-flavoured mashed sweet potato, hydrangea jelly, leaf-shaped matcha cookies, blueberries, and more, all capturing the swaying hydrangeas during the downpour of the rainy season. They are limited in stock and are not re-added to the menu until the following year once they run out.

     

    Customers can order the parfait on its own, with a cup of tea, or with both tea and warabimochi. The tea set and tea party versions come with a free hydrangea coaster.

  • Stay Inside This Kyoto Townhouse Now Offering a New Accommodation Plan

    18.May.2021 | FOOD / SPOT

    Tsumugi Machiya Inn has opened a new day-use plan which offers a chance for guests to enjoy an entire Kyoto-style townhouse to themselves for the day for up to 10 hours. The plan comes with a lunch service attached.

    喧騒を外れた一棟貸しでプライベートな時間を

    Enjoy the ‘Tsumugi Dining’ experience with a lavish bento

    Gorgeous guest rooms

    Inside Tsumugi Dining

    Tsumugi Machiya Inn first opened its doors in April 2016 as a way to ‘tie’ (tsumugi) people to local towns. The hotel accommodation brand now has around 60 branches, offering guests chance to rent out an entire building to themselves for a day.

     

    With the pandemic still in full swing, the desire for travel can be felt around the world. In Japan, it is difficult to travel between prefectures for many, and the risk of coming into contact with others is still a widespread fear. That’s where Tsumugi Machiya Inn’s new day-use plan comes in, offering people a chance to enjoy a stay elsewhere without the worry of bumping into other guests. The plan comes with lunch made with meat from Kyoto and other seasonal ingredients. The food is delivered to the private accommodation at an allotted time. There are luxurious beds, a bath, and other little amenities for a wonderful, relaxing stay.

     

    Check out the links below to see which branches are participating in this plan.

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