Translated by Hiro1901125
Six Exciting Hands-on Activities In Kanagawa, From Sushi Making To Farming
Written by MATCHA-PR
If you would like to take part in culture experience workshops, how about checking out the variety of activities offered in Kanagawa? From making sushi and soba noodles to flying kites and farming, there are various exciting activities to enjoy!
Are you the type of person that isn’t content to just stand around looking at the famous sights? Would you like to enjoy hands-on experiences during your trip to Japan? If that sounds like you, we recommend you try some cultural experience activities. From making sushi to helicopter tours, Japan is full of options for visitors who want to jump in and take part in the action.
This article features several activities in the tourist-friendly Kanagawa prefecture, which is located just outside Tokyo.
1. Make Sushi at Satsumaya Honten in Fujisawa
Sushi is Japan's representative dish. How about trying your hand at making sushi, the dish that everyone visiting Japan wants to taste? Join the sushi-making workshop at Satsumaya Honten, a long-established sushi restaurant in Fujisawa, and get a lesson directly from the head chef.
English interpretation is available and the workshop is open even to beginners who will be holding a sushi knife for the first time. The head chef teaches everyone from step one with patience and kindness.
The workshop takes about two hours and costs 7,000 yen per person. If you would like to participate, check the official website of Satsuyama Honten to see the schedule of the workshops. From there, you can fill out an inquiry form and learn the details directly from the restaurant staff.
2. Go Kart Racing at F. Dream Hiratsuka
Most Japanese racing circuits are out in the countryside, but F. Dream Hiratsuka offers a unique opportunity to race in the city. The facility offers a variety of motor activities that anyone can experience as they don't require a driver’s license.
There are various packages to choose from. Get the Fun Sports Racing Package that lets you race three laps (1,030 yen and up on weekdays) or the Discount Group Package that gives you thirteen laps for up to four racers (3,600 yen and up on weekdays). You can also rent out an entire track at a prearranged time for your party (61,700 yen and up per hour).
This experience is perfect for the entire family to enjoy as even children who six and up (who are at least 130 cm tall) can participate.
Note: Circuit information is provided in Japanese only. Please bring an interpreter with you if you require language assistance.
F. Dream Hiratsuka
Address: Kanagawa, Hiratsuka, Nagatoro 1-13
Official website: http://www.f-dream.jp/
3. Make Soba Noodles at Shinonome Soba in Hadano
Kanagawa Prefecture offers visitors the opportunity to try making one of Japan’s signature foods - soba noodles!
This particular workshop is offered by Shinonome Soba, a soba restaurant famous for its freshly made, deliciously chewy soba noodles.
The Hadano area has always been rather poorly suited to rice cultivation, so a thriving soba culture arose here instead. Shinonome Soba offers a soba-making experience for 4,400 yen, which includes enough noodles for four servings.
The workshop lasts an hour, and participants can eat the noodles they made on the spot by paying a little extra to turn the noodles into a meal (broth is 230 yen, and a five-piece vegetable tempura side is available for 400 yen).
Give yourself at least an extra thirty minutes if you plan to stay and eat. Shinonome Soba is still one of the very few places in Japan where you can make your own soba noodles and then boil and eat them on the spot!
Address: Kanagawa, Hadano, Higashitawara 999 (located inside the Tawara Furusato Park)
Official website: None
Kanagawa Travel Info page: Soba Making Workshop
4. Ryokusuian Farming Experience in Hadano
Ryokusuian in Hadano city offers a “farming experience” that allows visitors to take part in work on a traditional Japanese farm. The participants can experience every stage of agricultural work - from spring planting to fall harvest - as well as taking part in fun events like cherry blossom viewing, mochi rice pounding, and more.
The fee is 5,000 yen for the whole family, which brings the per-person charge to just 2,500 yen or less! This deal is made even sweeter by the fact that every group gets to take home at least 6 kilograms of harvested rice.
The only drawback is that short-term travelers may find it hard to time their visit since the experience is only offered once a month during a ten-month period each year. But even if you’re only in Japan for a few days, you can always sign up for one of their tours, which are offered on a regular basis.
Address: Kanagawa, Hadano, Minoge 269
Official website: http://www.kankou-hadano.org/hadano_point/point_ryokusuian.html (Hadano City Tourist Association)
5. Kite Making and Kite Flying Experience in Sagamihara
Sagamihara has a tradition of flying large kites that dates back to the nineteenth century. Each May, the city holds a kite-flying event for giant kites, the largest of which measures 14.5 meters on all sides. For visitors interested in experiencing Sagamihara’s kite culture, the Sagami Odako Center is the place to go.
The center has numerous giant kites on display, and also offers a kite-making area that local kite clubs can use for a fee.
The center also occasionally holds kite-making workshops that visitors can participate in. This is a great opportunity if you’ve never made a Japanese kite before! Note that the workshop is only offered in Japanese, so you’ll need to bring an interpreter with you, and is not held according to a fixed schedule. If you’re interested, please contact the Sagami Odako Center directly for details.
You can also get more information on the Sagami Giant Kite Festival held each May by visiting the official Sagamihara Tourism Association website.
Sagami Odako Center
Address: Kanagawa, Sagamihara, Minami ward Shindo 2268-1
Official website: http://www.e-sagamihara.com/nature/museum/0124/index.html
6. Yokosuka Slipper Making Workshop
Yokosuka slippers are a folk craft item inspired by hakonkon zori, a traditional handicraft from Gunma Prefecture. Visitors to Yokosuka can participate in a Yokosuka slipper-making workshop. English interpretation is available, making it easy for overseas visitors to join the fun as well.
Visitors from overseas are encouraged to try their hand at making T-shirt slippers, which can be made out of old T-shirts.
The workshops are not held according to a regular schedule but can be adjusted to fit your itinerary if you come in a group of 3-10 participants.
Inquiries can be made through the official website, and you can also request English language services. The workshop fee, which includes materials, is 4,800 yen per person.
Address: Kanagawa, Yokosuka, Uwamachi 2-1
Official website: http://zenzou.saloon.jp/