For a luxury Japanese experience. This two-day itinerary incorporates sake, UNESCO heritage shrines, beautiful lakes and waterfalls, five-star accommodation, a bamboo experience and an amazing French sake dinner!
Start your Nikko sake trip by visiting Watanabesahei Sake Brewery (Watanabesahei shoten) nestled at the foot of the Nikko mountains. Take a tour of this small, family-run sake brewery that has been preserving the tradition of brewing sake since 1842.
The owner is welcoming and speaks very good English!
For a special lunch, visit Meiji-no-Yakata which was originally built as the holiday home for F.W. Horn, an American who introduced the electric gramophone / phonograph to Japan during the Meiji period.
Enjoy western style dishes by award-winning chef Minoru Yamamoto as well as the historical Meiji period atmosphere.
Nikko is most famous for the shrines and temples of Nikko and the area was registered as a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1999.
See below for a map to the two shrines and temple.
Futarasan Shrine : Google Map
Nikkō Tōshō-gū Shrine: Google Map
Rinnoji Temple: Google Map
UNESCO World Heritage Page: Shrines and Temples of Nikko
One of the most beautiful lakes in Japan, Nikko’s Chuzenji Lake, was a popular holiday destination for foreign diplomats during the Meiji period.
Be sure to check out the lake cruises and activities such as SUP (Stand up paddle-boarding), cycling and hiking.
Enjoy the picturesque scenery!
Enjoy a luxurious stay at the newly opened Ritz-Carlton along the scenic Chuzenji Lake and Mt. Nantai in Oku-Nikko.
Enjoy an amazing dining experience and wind down with spa treatments and a soak in the onsen (natural hot spring).
The onsen is the only one of its kind for The Ritz-Carlton.
Visit Senjogahara, a marsh land 1,400 meters above sea level.
Protected by the Ramsar Convention, a diverse range of plants and animals inhabit the forests, lakes, swamps, rivers, and marshes.
Senjogahara’s popular trekking trails allow you to walk around the marsh in around 2.5 hours.
Down from the Nikko mountains in Oya is Wakayama Farm, one of the largest carefully maintained bamboo forests open to visitors in Japan.
Visit Wakayama Farm and enjoy the picturesque scenery, drink matcha green tea in a bamboo cup (you can take the cup home), and take in the peaceful atmosphere around you.
Book in advance to hire kimono.
Visit Oya History Museum, where you can explore a stone mine and see how Oya stone was once mined here.
On the ground floor, there is a display room that features tools used to dig the mine. And 60m underground is an impressive vast area that was dug mostly by hand!
Oya stone is famous for being used by American architect Frank Lloyd Wright for his design of the Imperial Hotel.
A special treat for food and sake lovers.
Enjoy a special sake dinner created by L’Ordre du Mérite Agricole Chevalier-awarded chef Kazunori Otowa. Visit Otowa Restaurant to experience a beautiful marriage of French cuisine, deeply rooted in Japanese culinary culture, and premium quality handcrafted sake from four local breweries.
No doubt a world-class sake pairing experience!
Book a traditional Nikkobori wood craft experience at Murakami Toyohachi Shoten.
This popular outdoor activity company in Nikko offers a wide range of activities such as canoeing, trekking, SUP and snowshoes activities in the colder winter season.
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. This Tsukemono (Japanese pickles) shop converted a traditional farm house into a unique restaurant which specializes in simple but delicious Japanese breakfast!
Uotoku uses only the best Japanese eel and highest grade binchotan charcoal to grill their delicious eel.
A popular Wagyu Steak restaurant near Tochogu shrine in Nikko
Visit a family-run brewery in Mashiko and learn about the famous pottery culture.