Winter Foodie Tour

OVERVIEW

In the winter the sea of Japan offers up some of it's best food options. From the start of November fresh crab is back on the menu. Kyotango's brand, Taiza-gani, are sometimes called phantom crab due to their rarity. Only in Kyotango will you get the freshest, and the most reasonable prices too.

ITINERARY LENGTH

3 DAYS

SEASON

December to March

TRANSPORTATION

Rental Car

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Ine: traditional fishing village and boat houses
  • Amanohashidate: One of the 3 great scenic views of Japan
  • Stay in a Traditional Ryokan
  • The Best Winter Seafoods: Crab and Oysters
  • Take Part in Food Making Activities

DAY 1

In the unexplored parts of Kyoto you can relax in onsen ryokan and have your fill of the views of nature and the sea. On the first day, you can visit Amanohashidate, famous as one of Japan's three most scenic spots, and the Ine funaya boathouses, which have exploded in popularity recently. Then you can relax in the nature of Kyotango and stay in one of the many onsen ryokan. On day two you can have all you can eat oysters, and visit historic sites. This winter foodie course will give you a taste of the best foods that Kyotango produces.

Depart Osaka Umeda Station

Rent a car from Osaka Umeda Station

Pick up your rent a car from Osaka Umeda Station.

Getting to Kyotango Nippon Rent-a-car

Arrive at Amanohashidate

Have lunch at Amanohashidate

Famous as one of the three most scenic spots in Japan, Amanohashidate has many souvenir shops, and restaurants.

Dining in Amanohashidate

Viewland Park

Amanohashidate is the land bridge between the Sea of Japan and Miyazu Bay in northern Kyoto Prefecture. Along with Matsushima in Miyagi prefecture and Miyajima in Hiroshima they make up the three most scenic spots in Japan. Amanohashidate is a sandy beach which runs for about 3.6km, and is covered in about 8000 pine trees of various size, it looks very unique. The name "Amanohashidate" comes from its appearance as a bridge stretching up to heaven. There are several ways to get the most out of Amanohashidate: you can take in the view from Amanohashidate View Land, walk or ride a bike along Amanohashidate, look at it from a boat, or, in the summer, swim at one of the swimming beaches and enjoy the nature that surrounds you. Amanohashidate was voted one of the hundred must see places in Japan.

Cable car ticket (Adult):

¥850

Cable car ticket (Child):

¥450

Operating hours:

9:00 AM to 5:00 PM

Viewland Website

Depart Amanohashidate for Ine -Funaya Boathouses

Explore Ine Bay

Upon arriving in Ine, take a ride aboard an Ine 'Sea Taxi', and be shown around the beautiful Ine bay. Despite facing the Sea of Japan, Ine Bay is very different from the image of those stormy waters. All along and facing Ine Bay the first floor of the houses are garages for boats, there are about 230 of these boathouses in all. The boathouses have even been declared an "Important Preservation District for Groups of Traditional Buildings". With a chance to get a picture of the photogenic back of the boathouses, and the availability of sake tasting, Ine is a town you will definitely have a good time in.

Adult Ticket:

¥1000

Trip Duration:

30 minutes

Sea Taxi

Take a walk around Ine

Explore Ine

After your boat ride around the port, enjoy a stroll through Ine and spend some downtime at the local Ine Cafe, or the Mukai brewery.

Ine Tourism Website

Depart Ine

Scenic Drive Along the San-in Geopark Coastline

After departing Ine, head along Route 178 and enjoy some of the beautiful sites of the San-in Geopark's coastline.

More Info

Kyogamisaki Lighthouse

A chalky white lighthouse that looms on top of a cliff 148 meters above sea level at the most northern point of the Tango Peninsula.

More Info

Tango Matsushima

Tango Matsushima takes its name from its resemblance to Matsushima, one of the three great views of Japan. This is a beautiful spot to take photographs during the sunrise and sunset.

More Info

Byobuiwa (folding-screen rock)

Byobuiwa rock is a andesite with a height of 13 meters, and was named for its resemblance to a Japanese folding screen (Byobu) as it rises from the ocean surface.

More Info

Arrive in Kyotango

Check in to Your Ryokan (Japanese Inn)

Find an Accommodation

Retire to Your Ryokan

Enjoy the evening in your comfortable ryokan

Spend the rest of the evening in your comfortable accommodation. At this time of year many ryokan offer crab courses as part of their menu, in fact some may only offer crab. Whatever you choose for dinner take the rest of night to relax in the onsen (hot spring), look out over the sea, or just chill in your room, the night is yours to do as you please.

Browse Accommodations

DAY 2

Get Your Fill of Oysters

The forests around Kumihama Bay provide an abundance of nutrients to the runoff water flowing into the bay. This, combined with the shelter provided by the Shotenkyo sand bar, makes it the ideal location for oyster cultivation. Nurtured by these natural phenomenon the oysters here grow big and delicious.

Depart your Ryokan

Visit the Inaba Family Merchant House

The “Gosho Inaba Honke” was the main family house of a wealthy Kumihama merchant family. The main building was built 130 years ago, and is a nationally registered tangible cultural property. Enjoy the historical and grand residency of the Gosho Inaba Merchant House, which also has a large Japanese garden attached.

Admission is free

More info Homepage

Hand-Made Pottery

You can also take part in pottery making, your goods will be fired and posted to you when done. (domestic postage only)

Activity Fee:

3000 yen per person

Homepage

Arrive at Fuurann no Yakata

All You Can Eat Steamed Oysters

Pulled out of Kumihama Bay these are some of the freshest oysters you'll ever taste. The staff will bring them to your table by the bucket-full and start steaming them right before your eyes. All you have to do is turn the steamer off when the timer beeps and dig in. Just let them know when you've finished one bucket and they'll bring you another one.

Fee per adult

2500 yen for 60 mins

Homepage

Drive to Kumihama

See the Winter Flowers at Nyoiji Temple

Nyoiji Temple is one of the the 25 Kansai flower temples, and while it's in its prime in spring there are beautiful flowers blossoming all year round, even in the winter.

More info Homepage

Visit Kamitani Shrine

While the shrine may only be hundreds of years old, the site has been important for thousands of years. Iwakura, a boulder that has been split in two, was used to identify the summer solstice, and helped ancient farmers plan their crops for the year.

More info Even more info

Arrive at the Souvenir Shops

Takeout Shop Jibamon

This sweet shop specializes in baked sweet potatoes. They are delicious just by themselves but if you have them in a soft serve ice cream sundae they are a game changer.

Homepage

Souvenir Shopping

Kanihan has a wide range of souvenirs available. From sweets and rice crackers perfect for bringing back to the office, to local goods you can eat later to remember your holiday.

More info

Arrive at Your Ryokan

Check in to your Ryokan

After checking in take a walk around the streets of Yuhigaura, head down to the beach, or just chill in your room.

Accommodations

Dinner and Onsen

If you didn't have the crab last night, or even if you did, it's highly recommended to have it tonight. Think about how different the flavors are when food is made with fresh local ingredients. Afterwards feel free to relax in the onsen.

DAY 3

Secrets of the Food Industry

Today you'll get to see where food really comes from. Witness a high speed crab auction, try your hand at making 100% buckwheat soba noodles in an idyllic natural setting, and even make your own sea-salt!

Arrive at Kani Ichiban

Strawberry Picking

Make sure you've only had a light breakfast because for 30 minutes you can eat all the strawberries you can pick at Kani Ichiban.

Activity fee Feb-Mar:

2000 yen per adult

Activity Fee Apr-May:

1600 yen per adult

Homepage

Depart your Ryokan

Hand-Made Soba Experience

Here you'll be guided through how to make 100% buckwheat noodles. They'll then bag them up and you can take them home as a souvenir. It makes enough for 4-5 people.

Activity Fee:

2700 yen per 4-5 person portion

More info Homepage

Lunch at an Organic Cafe

Tentomushi Batake

This cafe is run and supplied by an organic farm nearby. The food is fresh and of very high quality. They have a range of dining-in options, the vege-curry is highly recommended. And if you're on the go, there are takeout options too.

More info Homepage

Arrive at Kotohiki Salt Factory

Make Your Own Artisanal Sea Salt

Learn how sea salt is made, and then make some yourself to take home as a souvenir or as a gift.

Activity fee:

1000 yen per person

Arrive in Taiza

Taiza Crab Auction

From November to March the crab auction is held almost daily in Taiza. Watch the quick-fire, intense bidding from the 2nd floor observation deck. Unfortunately you won't be able to bid yourself.

Admission is Free

More info

Tateiwa - Standing Rock

At 20m tall Tateiwa, or standing rock, is an impressive site all year round. However, in the winter with the powerful waves crashing against it you can see it at it's most dramatic.

More info

Arrive at Ashiginu Onsen

A Relaxing Soak

Round out your holiday with a relaxing soak at Ashiginu Onsen. Situated on a hill it has views out over the countryside. It also has a small shop for picking up some last minute souvenirs and snacks for the car ride home.

More info Onsen Homepage

Depart Kyotango

Heading Home

It's time to hit the road again and head back to Osaka. With a full belly and lots of souvenirs we hope you will remember your holiday in Kyotango fondly, and visit again soon.