Japan’s Culinary Heritage

Enjoy Japan’s regional cuisine – the very heart and soul of Japanese culture


  • Visit Kanazawa’s local food market which has attracted residents and visitors for almost 300 years

  • Learn earth-oven cooking with a Japanese grandmother in Hida-Furukawa and visit the locally-run sake brewery in Takayama

  • Visit beautiful Awaji island and learn about its distinct seafood culture while  enjoying a beach lunch prepared by a local chef

  • Hunt for wild vegetables (sansai) with a local expert and learn traditional cooking methods with members of the Gokayama community

  • Visit a family-run organic farm and join with family members for an outdoor cookery experience amongst their rice fields in Asuka

  • Enjoy an exclusive Kaiseki dinner feast produced by a master chef with over three decades of experience

A small-group guided food tour to experience Japan’s best-kept culinary traditions

Trip level:    Moderate
Availability:  January to December
Price per person: starting from A$6155

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This Japan Holidays culinary tour visits famous locations including the ancient imperial capital of Kyoto, as well as hidden rural villages and the unique culture of Awaji Island in the fabled Inland Sea, where culinary traditions have been handed down from generation to generation.

Foraging for wild ingredients, harvesting the bounty of the land, cooking with members of local communities, this tour experience is the most intimate way to uncover Japan’s history and culture – through food!

Japanese cuisine’s unique qualities are the product of a long tradition of respect for the harvest of ingredients, and for nature itself.

Food culture in Japan is also closely related to festivals and rituals, and reflects the way of life in each particular region. Travelling from mountain villages to fishing ports, staying in rural thatched-roof houses and in the cities, you will taste the local sake, experience the food and the culture, and share unforgettable moments with people you’ll meet on your journey.

The Japan Holidays adventure starts in Tokyo and takes in the local food market in Kanazawa, followed by hunting wild plants with local villagers in Gokayama. We then travel to Shirakawa-go, a World Heritage Site, and Takayama, where a local community will hosts us in an old Kominca house. Here we learn Okudo-san (earth oven) cooking and visit a local sake brewery. In Asuka, capital of Japan before Kyoto and Nara, we visit a local family of organic farmers for an “outdoor kitchen” experience, using locally-produced vegetables. We visit a fishing port on Awaji Island before heading to the imperial capital of Kyoto to enjoy a Kaiseki dinner in the exclusive setting of a wonderful property not typically open to the public.

The Kaiseki dinner is prepared and explained by chef Taro Katayama who has over thirty years of experience.

Whats Included

  • Travel with English-speaking tour guide

  • 10 nights in hotels and Japanese-style inns

  • Daily breakfast, 6 dinners + 4 lunches

  • All transportation between tour locations

  • Entrance to museums, temples and other spots on the group’s itinerary

  • Forwarding of one item of luggage

Whats Not Included

  • Flights

  • Airport transfers

  • Pay locally for drinks with meals and for 4 lunches

  • Pay locally for bus journey on Day 1

Japanese Cuisine

Map and Itinerary

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