Enjoy a mystical night of relaxing fireflies and festival fun only this June at Higashi-Izu!
26.May.2019 | SPOT
Higashi-Izu Machi Kanko Kyokai tourism association is holding their 17th evening firefly-watching event to be held in a local hot spring village of Higashi-Izu. The Higashi-Izu Machi Onsenkyo Hotaru Kansho no Sakuya” will be held from Sunday 2nd to Tuesday 11th June. Free yourself from everyday life and watch the night light up as a mystical scenery filled with fireflies descends upon you. This experience will take your body and mind to a whole new world!
The event will be held at the natural Okawa Takegasa Koen; a park which is listed to have one of Shizuoka’s 100 top waterfronts. You can feel the seasons changing here, and during June, you can see a clear stream of fireflies dancing. The warm colours of their glow will put you at ease for hours.
Numerous other events will take place alongside the firefly-watching event, such as the “Chochin walk” where you can enjoy a peaceful stroll at night with a warmly lit paper lantern. You can also stop by the “firefly town” (Hotaru-shi) where you can browse lots of local goods during the night market, or take part in the “otanoshimi chusen kai” lucky lottery where many prizes can be won. Shizuoka DC has also planned a special prize-giving program, where visitors who arrive at the park in a Yutaka (summer kimono) on a weekday of the event will be given a small gift!
Enjoy a mystical and extraordinary night of nature at Higashi-Izu. This is your chance to relax under the light of fireflies and explore the numerous shops at the firefly town!
Firefly-watching evening, Higashi-Izu Hot Spring town
“Dai 17 kai Higashi-Izu Machi Onsenkyo Hotaru Kansho no Sakuya”
Location: Okawa Takegasa Koen park, Higashi-Izu Machi Ogawa Onsen (東伊豆町大川温泉 大川竹ヶ沢公園)
Running: Sun 02 ー Tues 11/06/2019
Times: 19:30 ー 21:00 (Subject to cancellation due to rain)
※ Last park entries: 20:25
Park entry fee：Please pay the “Hotaru Ikusei-kin” of ¥200 to help look after the fireflies.
Special edition website: http://www.e-izu-hotaru.org/
Learn About Ito City in Shizuoka Prefecture in This Breathtaking 8K PR Video
31.March.2020 | SPOT
A new PR video for Ito City in Shizuoka Prefecture was posted on the city’s official YouTube channel on March 2, 2020 as part of Ito City’s digital marketing efforts for 2020, and it’s already garnered over 21 million views in just over two weeks.
The video was directed and editor Yuki Eikawa who has gained much attention across Japan for his touristic PR video work. It captures the most famous sights across Ito including Mount Omuro and Jogasaki Coast, and showcases the city’s food, culture, and incredible natural environments. Check it out below.
ITO City, Shizuoka, Japan in 8K HDR
Learn more about Ito on the city’s official website which has a bounty of useful information for exploring everything Ito has to offer.
UMI HOTEL ANNEX: The New Luxury Hotel Opens in Shizuoka’s Resort Area Usami
09.March.2020 | SPOT
Usami is known as the resort area of Ito in Shizuoka Prefecture, and it’s here that the new luxury relaxation hotel UMI HOTEL ANNEX, which boasts a horizon-stretched ocean view, has openedーtogether with the new restaurant and bar known as The SEA.
UMI HOTEL ANNEX, a hotel for relaxation
UMI HOTEL ANNEX offers a breathtaking experience for guests with its ocean view, the sounds of the waves, and the natural scent of trees that envelop it. The hotel is on the small side, built with just six rooms, but this opens the door for greater hospitality, consideration, and comfort. If you want to wind down from a long day of travelling, need some adequate sleep, and wish to get away from the hustle and bustle of Japan’s busy cities, then UMI HOTEL ANNEX has you covered.
Enjoy a sweeping ocean view
Upon entering a guest room, you are met with an unobstructed view of the sea. All rooms are also equipped with mirrorsーwhich span the entire wallーwhich bring the view of the ocean into your own room too. This means you can sleep soundly while surrounded by the sea, which is just 30 seconds from the hotel. *4 rooms of the rooms offer the ocean view
Rooms also have a pillar made from hiba cypress, a type of tree symbolic of Aomori Prefecture. The pillars not only serve to support the structure of the hotel, but also wrap the room with the natural scent of timber. Hiba is a strong antibacterial and pesticide wood, and its aroma also has a relaxing effect.
Open-air infinity pool baths with water flowing from the source
The roof is decked out with infinity pool baths with water flowing in from the source. Everything in and around the pools is made from the same Aoyama hibi cypress, including the pools themselves, meaning all rooms enjoy that warm smell of cypress. The pool joins together with Usami Bay, which stretches 1km, offering a feeling of openness like no other. There are even waterproof sofas in the pool rooms for more relaxation.
Amenities galore for a quiet night’s sleep
Amenities offered include items by Sansatia, a Bali-based natural cosmetics company. There’s also an original line of room wear made from a special Japanese gauze which can also be used in the surrounding area outside too. The linen is provided by Imabari Towel, and the beds by Simmons. There’s also bath salts, shoehorns, and more.
All guest rooms are equipped with pots, microwaves, refrigerators, irons, and trouser pressers. There’s also coin operated laundry machines, accommodating for those longer stays.
UMI HOTEL ANNEX
Address: 1746-2 Usami, Ito, Shizuoka
Official Website: https://tabinoya.net/annex/
Kissho Caren: Gaze at Shizuoka’s Moonlit Night Sky From Your Hot Spring With New Hotel Plan
28.January.2020 | SPOT
Kissho Caren is now offering a new hotel plan for women only which is available until the end of March 2020.
Kissho Caren is an incredible hideaway resort and inn located alone the quiet shores of Hokkawa Hot Spring in Shizuoka. All rooms offer a breathtaking ocean view, and all rooms, plus the restaurant and infinity pool open-air baths, offer a panoramic spectacle where the sky and sea meld together into one beautiful scene. Guests can also witness the “Moon Road,” a popular power spot of Hokkawa Hot Spring which was chosen as one of Japan’s “100 Moon Views.”
Kissho Caren boasts two of its own water sources for its flowing water. It houses 18 water spots, including hot springs in seven locations around the inn and its sister facility Tsuruya Kisshotei, as well as rentable baths, foot baths, and the beachside “Kurone Rock Bath.” All of these hot water spots are fully equipped with bath towels, face lotion, and other amenities. The inn’s hospitality is also well-praised, including its salon which offers barely tea, soft drinks, and tokoroten made in the city of Izu. In the evenings, it also offers beer amongst other things.
After checking in, guests choose a yukata and obi of their liking and enjoy a luxurious and tranquil afternoon tea. The seasonal pancakes are prepared in front of you by the chef and are topped with sweet and refreshing soft serve ice cream and served with beautiful tea. The pancakes are mixed with whey which has a lot of skin benefits, and the teas vary from Izu guricha tea to Izu aloe tea which have anti-ageing benefits and strengthen the immune system. All of this takes place at Aodake which is open 14:00-15:30.
At the Kissho Spa, one can spy the gorgeous ocean from the window. Guests can enjoy some relaxing thalassotherapy with the warm climate of the beach and seaweed, oils prepared in Izu Ōshima, guricha tea, and other local treatments, all of which are popular.
The French course dinner comes with a free drink and flambéed dessert. All rooms also come with lots of other hopsitable gifts too, including a free mini bar and snacks, 20% off from the Kisso Spa, and more.
If you’re looking for a place to stay with your girlfriends in Japan, then we recommend putting this place on your list. Don’t miss out on this limited-time, girls-only offer.
Girls-Only Amenity-Packed, Wine & Flambéed Dessert Plan
Running: January 6, 2020 – March 31, 2020
Prices (1 Night With Breakfast/Prices Per Person):
- From ¥26,500 (2 People/1 Room)
- From ¥24,500 (3 People/1 Room)
- From ¥23,500 (4 People/1 Room)
*An extra ¥5,000 on public holidays. An extra ¥2,000 from February 9, 2020. Includes tax and service charge.
- Dinner: French dinner course at “Four Season” restaurant
- Breakfast: Japanese breakfast at “Four Season” or teppanyaki breakfast at “Aodake”
- 1 free drink (White or Red Wine/Sparkling Wine/Soft Drink)
- Flambéed dessert after dinner
- Free mini bar in all rooms and confectionery set
- 20% off Kissho Spa (Discounted: ¥8,000 / Usual Price: ¥10,000): 60-minute body lymphatic drainage/60-minute facial treatment
Address: 1130 Naramoto Higashiizu, Higashiizu, Kamo District, Shizuoka
Official Website: https://www.kissho-caren.com/en/
Check Out The New Desserts in The Strawberry World of Ichigo BonBonBerry This Season
Strawberry Shop Izunokuni Shizuoka Michi-no-Eki Izu no Heso ichigo BonBonBerry Izunokuni factory will be celebrating “ii ichigo no hi” (Good Strawberry Day) on January 15 by releasing new strawberry purin desserts which are full of strawberry goodness.
Committed to increasing love for strawberries, Michi-no-Eki Izu no Heso Ichigo BonbonBERRY Izunokuni factory sells a wide range of delicious strawberry-based foods as well as cute merchandise throughout the year. For example, strawberry-themed merchandise, jams, seasoning containing strawberries, desserts and much more.
Toge Toge Bonbon: ¥1800 (After Tax)
The Toge Toge Bonbon parfait is full of impact and full of strawberries. The glass is filled with homemade no-bake cheesecake, milk purin, homemade strawberry jam and much more. As strawberries are currently in season, the parfait currently enjoys a sweeter flavour. The fruitiness balances out with the mildness of the cheesecake and leaves a refreshing aftertaste.
Mix and Enjoy – Strawberry Pouch Pudding
Strawberry Pouch Pudding: ¥650 (After Tax)
A smooth strawberry purin is layered with slices of strawberry and fluffy whipped cream. The adorable purin pouch is packed with dried, crispy strawberry granola mix. Mix up the granola to enjoy a range of different textures. This can also be enjoyed on the go.
As strawberries are in season, this is the perfect time to treat yourself to one of Japan’s sweet and beautiful strawberry desserts.
Michi-no-Eki Izu no Heso Ichigo BonBonBerry Izunokuni factory
Address: 195-2 Takyo, Izunokuni, Shizuoka
・Souvenir Corner: 09:00 – 17:00
・Bonbon Berry Cafe: 10:00 – 16:00 (Last Orders: 15:30)
・Bonbon Berry Stand (Soft Serve Ice Cream and Drinks): 10:00 – 16:00
Phone Number: 0558-99-9300
Michi-no-Eki Izu no Heso Official Website: http://www.izunoheso.com
Ichigo BonBonBERRY Izunokuni factory Official Website: http://www.izu-ichigo.com
Rakuten Travel Reveals the Most Booked Onsen Regions of 2019
14.December.2019 | SPOT
Japan’s largest online travel site Rakuten Travel has announced the 2019 rankings for the most popular onsen spots in Japan. Having calculated the number of people staying at an onsen resort multiplied by the number of days they stayed, the rankings reveal that the winner has been the same for six years in a row now: Atami in Shizuoka.
Atami in Shizuoka has established its reputation as one of the leading locations for onsen in Japan. Its high quantity of hot spring water has earned the area top spot on Rakuten Travel’s rankings for six years in a row now. Along with easy access from Tokyo and its range of leisure facilities, this is a popular location for couples and even families with children.
In second place is Beppu Onsen, Ōita prefecture which has also made it into the rankings for six years in a row. Rakuten Travel’s customisable domestic travel package “Raku-Pack” has proven to be particularly popular among travellers to this region. “Raku-Pack” includes your airline ticket, access to all accommodations offered by Rakuten Travel across Japan, and free usage of rental services. Starting with Ōita prefecture’s first ever ANA InterContinental resort in Beppu (InterContinental – ANA Beppu Resort & Spa), more than 10 travel accommodations have opened this year and next year sees even more resort development.
In third place is Gunma Prefecture’s Kusatsu Onsen which has risen by one place since last year. This year, Sainokawara Open-air Bath (Sainokawara Rotenburo) received high amounts of praise for their mixed bathing day and changed this to be offered on a weekly basis as a result. A variety of events and tourist spots are constantly opening including the steepest zip line in Japan which will open in April.
For more information on places to visit in Japan, please visit Rakuten Travel’s website.
Izu Shaboten Zoo Opens New Hotel Izushaboten Village
Izu Shaboten Zoo in Ito, Shizuoka has opened its very own hotel Izushaboten Village Petit Hotel which is less than a minutes’ walk from the zoo itself, making it an ideal location for those looking to see the animals so they can take their time at their own leisure.
The hotel offers various different rooms, from modern and chic to the Izu Shaboten Zoo Room, Pirate Room and more. Each room has its own unique touch you won’t find anywhere else. The hotel also offers an accommodation plan that comes with entry tickets to the zoo.
For food, guests can enjoy dining at La Chic, a new restaurant that opened in spring this year that makes use of homegrown vegetables and produce sourced from contracted farmers. Food is served in a semi-buffet style in mornings and evenings so you can make up your own dish. Non-guests can eat here too if they make a reservation*.
*Reservations for non-guests are dependent on free tables and other conditions. The menu style and ingredients and subject to change without notice.
If you’re looking to visit Izu Shaboten Zoo, consider booking a room at their official hotel.
Izushaboten Village Petit Hotel
Address: 1317-584 Futo, Itō, Shizuoka Prefecture
Official Website: https://id-village.jp/petithotel/
Izu Shaboten Zoo
Address: 1317-13 Futo, Itō, Shizuoka Prefecture
Official Website: https://izushaboten.com/
Chilled Blue Chocolate Released by Shizuoka Matcha Sweet Makers Nanaya
12.May.2019 | FOOD
Nanaya, a producer of confections made using matcha from Shizuoka, is releasing a new line of blue chocolates. They will began rolling out at the Fujieda, Shizuoka, Aoyama and Kyoto Sanjo branches on May 9.
Blue chocolate is not something you see everyday. Nanaya make this melt-in-the-mouth chocolate by using the same original methods they developed to make white chocolate. It is more reminiscent of hard candy than the smooth velvety chocolate served in summer. It has a gentle sweetness brought about by the light brown sugar which is delicious until the last bite. It’s also seasoned with salt and pepper for accent and deeper flavours. The chocolate also uses butterfly pea which is popular in herbal teas in Thailand.
To further bring out the unique qualities of the herb tea, natural salt and three types of pepper are used: red, white and black. This adds a spicy kick to the sweetness of the chocolate. The chocolate is to be kept cool in the refrigerator and best enjoyed after leaving to come to room temperature before eating.
Try this exotic blue chocolate yourself this spring.
Available: At the Fujieda, Shizuoka, Aoyama, Kyoto Sanjo and Makinohara branches of Nanaya.
*Releasing at the Tea Museum in Shizuoka and online on May 12, 2019.
Nanaya Website: https://nanaya-matcha.com/?mode=f4&sid=10
Marushichi Group Website: http://marushichi-group.jp/
Bizarre ‘Smell Exhibition’ to Take Place in Shizuoka, Sapporo and Fukuoka
27.June.2018 | SPOT
The Smell Exhibition will take place from July in Sapporo, Shizuoka and Fukuoka and aims to stimulate people’s sense of smell, with everything from the disgusting to the pleasant.
This unique exhibition first took place at Nagoya PARCO from November 2016 to January 2017 and again at Ikebukuro PARCO from January to February in 2018. The event was a huge success on both occasions.
Surströmming is a type of fermented Baltic Sea herring originating in Sweden that’s been used on YouTube challenges and on Japanese variety show punishment games. You wouldn’t be wrong to called this the world’s smelliest canned good!
This tofu product is actually eaten in China, Taiwan, Hong Kong and elsewhere. The scent is so intense that one time it caused a train to stop because of people’s upheaval.
A specialty of the Izu Islands, kusaya is fresh fish dipped in salt water and dried in the sun. There even exists kusaya over 100 years old. Why not try smelling this traditional pungent odor yourself?
Said to be the most expensive fragrance in the world. It takes 6-7 years to extract the right scent from the root stalks of ameya iris from the Mediterranean Sea.
This smell used to be collected from musk deer. The scent sticks around for a long time used to be an extremely valuable ingredient for perfumes back then. Today, most musk perfumes are synthetic.
There are plenty other extraordinary smells to look forward to as well, from old people’s district body odor to pheromones!
You can get really involved too and pick up an original Smell Exhibition t-shirt or purchase various limited edition items and perfumes with nice smells.
Experience this bizarre, only-in-Japan exhibition this summer.
French Toast Tamagoyaki Arriving to Popular Egg Food Shop TAMAGOYA
TAMAGOYA are releasing the French toast ‘Tamago Yaaki’ which is made to look like tamagoyaki―a type of Japanese omelette―on May 26.
It’s made with TAMAGOYA’s special richly-flavoured eggs, milk, sugar and vanilla oil. It also uses specially made rich liquid purin with a little salt. So that everything combines well with the liquid purin, an original type of bread is used.
The bread is carefully soaked in the liquid purin and left to set for 12 hours. Upon ordering, it’s heated very carefully from a low heat, which is part of the secret to its delicious taste. There’s also four toppings to pick from to enjoy with it.
Because it takes time to make the Tamago Yaaki, only 10 are served on weekdays and 20 on weekends. You’d best get there fast if you want one! It also takes about 20 minutes to cook it after ordering.
Additionally, customers who order the Tamago Yaaki and Medama Yaaki together will receive a ¥100 discount from the total price.
Of course, there’s plenty of other tasty choices to pick on the menu too! If you’re an egg lover, be sure to head to TAMAGOYA to try out their food.
Quil Fait Bon Shizuoka’s Strawberry Tart is Made With Strawberries Freshly Picked on the Same Day
Quil Fait Bon is a fruit tart store that has begun sales of a new limited stock product at its Shizuoka branch. The Morning Picked Strawberry Nectar Tarts were released on April 6, 2018 and are made in the city of Kikugawa.
The tarts are made with strawberries freshly picked on the day. They are juicy and have a strong flavour. Due to the delivery of the strawberries differing each day, sale announcements are made on Quil Fait Bon’s official Facebook page.
Ripe strawberries are used which are grown using a special method. The method has the strawberries exposed to the cold which tightens the fruit, causing the sugar content to rise. The time taken to grow these strawberries means people can enjoy very delicious strawberries. They aren’t picked until they are a vibrant red and have taken on their best flavour, meaning they are completely ripe when served. These are some seriously irresistible, luxurious strawberries. Combined with simple complements for the tarts – fresh cream and custard – their flavour is only elevated.
Feast on a gourmet tart made with the freshest, most succulent strawberries on the market.
Just an hour’s ride from Tokyo on Shinkansen. Tea-picking tour will be held in Shizuoka Prefecture
05.March.2018 | SPOT
Oyaizu Seiichi Shoten has started accepting reservations for the tea-picking event called, “Shin Chatsumi Taiken Tour.” The tea fields are located very near Shizuoka Station, just 15 minutes away. The tour will be held from the 20th of April to the 30th of June.
“Shin Chatsumi Taiken Tour” is a rare experience-based event which both adults and children can enjoy.
Many kinds of activities such as, a tea-picking experience, tempura-eating experience where you can eat fresh tea leaf tempura, touring of tea-processing/packing and sweets items producing factories, purchasing matcha desserts/gelato in the antenna shop “Gashoan” and participating in the “tea leaves – all-you-can-stuff-in-the-bag” event.
In addition, reservations for the “factory-observing/experiencing tour” can now be made. In this tour, you can observe the tea factory/storage room and learn all about the varieties of Japanese teas.
Let’s participate in these experienced-based green tea events!
Let’s enjoy the “Kawazu Sakaura Festival” at “Kichijo CAREN.”
26.January.2018 | SPOT
Kawazu-cho, Higashi Izu, is known as the birthplace of Kawazuzakura (cherry tree) and it is here that the “Kawazu Sakura Matsuri” (festival) is held every year. Kawazuzakura is an early flowering variety which blooms in early February to early March. The flower petals are big and they are a beautiful pink color. About 150 branch shops sell their special foods at the festival venue.
Kichijo CAREN is a place where you can view many kinds of cherry blossoms while enjoying a hot spring.
The view from “Izu Kitagawa Onsen Moon Road” which was chosen as one of Japan’s 100 famous views is gorgeous. Why not enjoy a romantic view from the guest room or hot spring.
Kichijo CAREN’s cherry blossom spot
A gorgeous plan where you can enjoy the night/morning view. Special services will be offered.
Early February～ Kawazuzakura/entrance, hot spring “Hekikai”
Late February～ Ojimazakura/hot spring “Wazuki” ※The “grand public bath” is designated as the men’s bath or the woman’s bath according to the time.
Mid/late March～ Someiyoshino/in front of the restaurants “Aodake,” “Four Seasons”
Kawazu Sakura Matsuri Private Ohanami (flower viewing) Accomodation Plan
A plan where you can enjoy the cherry blossoms while staying in the guest room.
Gorgeous amenities such as cherry blossom pancakes, cherry blossom red sea bream dishes and cherry blossom aroma therapy will be offered.
Date: 2018,02/01 to 03/31
Price: One-night stay with breakfast – 28,150 yen per person / two persons in one room – 26,150 yen / three persons – 25,150 yen
・Amenities: Afternoon tea party with cherry blossom pancakes. (14:00 to 15:30 / restaurant “Aodake”)
- “cherry blossom red sea bream dish will be served at dinner time
- Sparkling wine and original cherry blossom aroma
- “Guri tea” will be served to those of who uploaded the photos of the accommodation on their SNS with the tag “＃吉祥CAREN”
Why not visit Higashi Izu/Kawazu-cho where early cherry blossoms can be viewed?