Shopping in Kurashiki
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Kimono Experience: 8 of the Best Destinations in Japan
- When it comes to kimonos, places like Kyoto and Asakusa get a lot of attention. But if you’re traveling in Japan and want a great kimono experience, there are more sights to see that complement this traditional garment. In this guide we’ll recommend the best shops to reasonably rent kimonos and the best spots to explore for the complete kimono experience. Kamakura Kamakura is a popular destination for those seeking a classical vibe. You can take the quaint Enoden Train to one of the storied shrines or soak in the atmosphere with a walk through the retro-style city streets. Either activity will suit your kimono nicely, regardless of the season. Kamakura Best Place : Hokoku-ji TempleA 15-minute walk and bus ride from Kamakura Station, Hokoku-ji Temple is a bit out of the way. But when you’re sipping matcha in the tranquil bamboo gardens, it’ll be more than worth the trip. Hokoku-ji Temple Kawagoe Because nothing says “kimono” like “ancient Edo,” the Koedo district of Kawagoe is a must. Plus the 8, 18, and 28 of every month is Kawagoe Kimono Day, which means special discounts at certain shops for the kimono crowd. You’ll definitely be in good company to soak in the old-fashioned atmosphere of this charming area. Kawagoe Best Place : Kashiya Yokocho, “Penny Candy Alley”An alley famous for its collection of over 20 traditional Japanese candy shops, Kashiya Yokocho is a trip back to childhood in another time. And it won’t break the bank, either. You can buy sweets starting at just 10 yen. Kashiya Yokocho Nikko Look to Nikko for natural beauty and impressive shrines. This popular destination features the Kegon Falls, Lake Chuzenji, and Toshogu Shrine, to name a few of the many attractions across the city. Best Place : Nikko Edomura, “EDO WONDERLAND”A recreation of 17th-century Japan, this family-friendly village is a fun stopover that keeps things lighthearted. Activities include ninja shows, samurai training, and all kinds of cosplay opportunities, plus funhouse type attractions modeled after historical locations. EDO WONDERLAND Kimono Rental Shop : COCON NIKKOThis kimono shop is 6-minutes walk from Tobu Nikko Station and 9 minutes from JR Nikko Station, making it easily accessible to those stopping over in Nikko for a day or two. The shop offers everything you need, so you can come empty-handed and leave in a full kimono 30 minutes later. COCON NIKKO Kanazawa Travel to Kanazawa has been made easy with the addition of the new Hokuriku Shinkansen. Delicious seafood and Japanese sweets are but two of the charms of this old world city. Fancy wearing a kimono and drifting from one lovely cafe to another? Of course you do. And Kanazawa is sure to satisfy. Kanazawa Best Place : Higashi Chaya DistrictEnjoy a stroll through this historical district filled with the wooden latticework of “chaya,” or entertainment houses, and the shops and restaurants that now fill them. You can choose from a selection of local flavors and savor them while you wander about the town. Don’t forget to grab some Japanese sweets at the Café YANAGI-AN , where they offer “Cream Anmitsu” is an excellent combination of cream and sweet red bean paste. Higashi Chaya District Café YANAGI-AN Kyoto Mention “kimono” in Japan and the Kyoto is sure to come up. The internationally renowned city is a hotspot for classical Japanese culture. Come and experience Kyoto’s singular charm for yourself. Kyoto Best Place : RurikoinThis Buddhist temple is open to the public only twice a year from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the spring and autumn, making it an extra special experience. That also means that crowds are to be expected. You’ll want to allow plenty of time to see this rare opening of Rurikoin’s gardens, perhaps at their most enchanting during the fall and spring seasons. Rurikoin Kurashiki Kurashiki was originally a castle town in Okayama. What has it rising in popularity, though, are its charming architectural touches, such as buildings with white walls and tile roofs that line the banks of a calm river running through the town. Everything comes together to create that old world atmosphere. Kurashiki Best Place : Kurashiki River Boat RidesTake in the town’s white-walled buildings from a leisurely boat ride. With tickets starting at 500 yen for adults and 250 yen for children, you can sit back as your boat is poled down the relaxing Kurashiki River. It’s an affordable experience you shouldn’t leave Kurashiki without. Kurashiki River Boat Rides Kimono Rental Shop : Kurashiki Kimono KomachiKurashiki Kimono Komachi is a shop where, aside from the usual offerings, it’s also possible to rent kimonos made from the acclaimed Kojima Denim. Step out into the street with a local fashion that will place you firmly in your surroundings. Asakusa Originally the working-class area, or Shitamachi, of Tokyo, Asakusa is now home to both the city’s oldest temple, Senso-ji, and its tallest building, Tokyo Skytree. Tourists to Japan are bound to end up in Asakusa at some point. But that’s just the beginning. Asakusa features of wealth of opportunities to experience the many faces of Japan, from modern to historical. Asakusa Best Place : Ebisuya RickshawsRenting a rickshaw is your best bet to capture the various sights of Asakusa. You’ll get an up-close view of the area and a chance to feel like old-world aristocrats. Plus, if you visit during the summer, you’ll be glad someone else is doing the walking for you. The Kaminarimon Course through Asakusa is about 15 minutes and costs 3,000 yen for 1 person, 4,000 yen for 2. Rickshaws Kimono Rental Shop : Kimono Rental YaeWith no preparation on your part necessary, Kimono Rental Yae makes things simple. Even rickshaw pickups are available at the shop; just let them know what time you’ll arrive beforehand. Kimono Rental Yae Kagurazaka Tucked away in the backstreets of Tokyo, Kagurazaka is brimming with character. Featuring an assortment of specialty shops, long standing Japanese restaurants, and even a few hidden bars, the curious streets of Kagurazaka are ripe for discovery. Find a spot that feels like it was made especially for you. Kagurazaka Best Place : Manju Cafe mugimaru2A warm glow emanates from behind the cover of vines surrounding the entrance to mugimaru2, a secret spot that’s straight out of a Ghibli movie. Step inside this manju, or steamed bun, cafe and have a seat on a cushion at a low table while you chill with the cafe cat over a fresh manju. Feel like exploring Kagurazaka a little more? You can get a few to-go. Manju Cafe mugimaru2 ©NAVITIME JAPAN. 旅行ガイド 楽しい旅をサポートする、便利なお役立ち情報をお届けします。
- 20. December. 2019
Shopping on Okayama’s Jeans Street
- Despite its modest size, there are plenty of interesting shops worth visiting in Kojima, more commonly known as “Jeans Town” or “Denim Town”. Here are a few of our favorites. Big John Big John is the pioneer of Japanese Denim. They made the first pair of jeans in Kojima back in 1965, and today their products are shipped all over the world. Their shop in Kojima is the only one entirely dedicated to this brand, and apart from most products in their lineup, they also have a section equipped with sewing machines where you can customize your own pair of jeans. Big John Momotaro Jeans Another one of the more well-known Japanese jeans brand also has a flagship store here in Kojima. Apart from browsing their more conventional products, you can also get a sneak peek of the production of their top of the line model, entirely made by hand. Even the fabric itself is woven by hand, and this process takes place here, in this store. If you want to purchase your own pair you need to be equipped with both a fat wallet and plenty of patience. Despite the hefty price tag of over 200,000 yen a pair, the demand is far bigger than the supply. Perhaps not that surprising, as each pair takes approximately three months to make, from start to finish. Momotaro Jeans Kojima Market Place This is a smaller shop that mainly focuses on locally produced denim products, but also carries everything from socks to accessories. One of their more interesting products is traditional Japanese folding fan made of bamboo and denim. Most of their products are handmade in Kojima. Kojima Market Place Dania Japan Dania claims that they want to build upon the heritage of art and crafts that has originated in Kojima. Besides their own jeans and t-shirts, they also carry a line of backpacks shaped like whale sharks, made from recycled denim. Their store is located in a building that used to be a bank, giving it a quite interesting interior. Dania Japan Rivets This is a small community café that offers everything from decent coffee to denim ice cream. They also have a small shopping section, offering some omiyage such as locally produced snacks as well as different denim products. Rivets All the shops in this list are located in the area called “Jeans Street”, located roughly 1km from JR Kojima station. There are frequent buses running from the station and the Jeans Street, including one that has its entire interior clad with denim that is only available on weekends. ©NAVITIME JAPAN. Travel Info Check out our travel tips to make your trip better!
- 5. October. 2017
What to Eat in Kojima Area in Kurashiki
- The fact that Kojima is the denim capital of Japan is reflected in its culinary culture as well. In this part of Japan, you will find plenty of food, drinks and sweets that builds upon the famous jeans culture of the region. It’s worth mentioning that Ai, or Japanese Indigo, is the plant that is usually used for coloring of Japanese Denim, and this plant is indeed edible. However, while there are a few different kinds of snacks and other foods made out of it, these aren’t actually blue. The blue color from this plant comes from a chemical process that includes substances not suitable for human consumption. Without it, the plant is green. Due to this fact, the snacks and food that shares the same blue color as the popular pants from Kojima, are colored by regular food coloring substances. Denim Burger On one of the back-streets in the Bikan Historical Quarter of Kurashiki, we stumbled across a stand offering “denim burgers”. While it just consists of a colored bread, a friend cutlet and some lettuce, it wasn’t really a culinary masterpiece. But at least it makes for a fun Instagram post. Denim Burger Denim Sake Even the national alcoholic beverage of the country gets a denim remake in Kurashiki. While its simply a bottle of regular sake wrapped in denim, the packaging does indeed stand out and makes for a quirky and fun souvenir. Denim Sake Denim Beer Yep, there’s even a small Kurashiki-based microbrewery producing an Indigo themed beer. And yes, the color of the actual drink is in fact blue. Taste-wise however, it tastes just like a light pilsner. Sold at most liquor-shops in Kurashiki. Denim Beer Denim Nikuman Not that different from the Denim burger – A regular Nikuman, or steamed bun, but where the dough has been colored blue. Denim Nikuman Denim Ice Cream The most common denim-themed food, available at plenty of shops both in Kurashiki and in Kojima. The exact flavor and ingredients vary from shop to shop, with some even sprinkling som grinded indigo leaves on top of it. If you’re just planning to try one of these foods, we recommend that you go for this one. Denim Ice Cream ©NAVITIME JAPAN. Travel Info Check out our travel tips to make your trip better!
- 9. September. 2017
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