31 Dec 2015

Japanease Soba

Before coming to Japan, I am not interested in eating Soba (Japanese buckwheat noodle) as the texture of the Soba seems not so tasty when compared with udon or ramen.  However, this autumn, I tried the Shinsoba made by 100% soba powder in Kiso, Nagano prefecture.  I found it very tasty which is different from the soba that I have eaten elsewhere in Japan.  The Shinsoba is made by the newly harvested buckwheat and thus the taste is richer and sweeter.  My doctor also recommended soba to me as the nutrient that it contains can improve digestion and has good impact on the skin as well!!! Takayama has a long cold winter and Kamonanban 鴨南蛮 soba (duck soba) is my favourite dish in winter which the restaurant put the ginger and leek on top of the soba.  If you have a chance to come to Takayma, please do not forget to try this winter specialty!!!

Today is the new year eve of Japan, one of the Japanese culture is to have soba noodles with family at night.  We are going to share this culture with our guests tonight.  It seems that tonight will be snowing too!! Wish you all have a happy new year with your beloved one and family!!

23 Aug 2015

Bus Tour of Doburoku Festival(Sake Drinking festival) in Shirakawago

Doburoku festival is a Shinto event held in Shirakawa-go every Autumn. Doburoku is a milky white, unrefined sake made by rice, rice malt, and water.  It is brewed from January through to October; the festival is the first day that we can drink the NEW doburoku!! Once you buy the sake cup from the festival, you can drink as much as you want!!!  Except drinking, there are also traditional dance such as lion dance, folk song performance and local food stalls.  The tour will also bring you to the observation point of Shirakawa-go to capture the excellent view of village (Ogimachi). No matter whether you are a sake lover or not, it is a valuable chance to experience a traditional Japanese sake festival by drinking, tasting the Japanese snacks and enjoying the cultural performances. Let's join us to enjoy the memorable sake festival in a world-heritage village- Shirakawag Bus tour will be organized for the festival, details are as follows:

Date: 14th –15th October, 2015(Wednesday and Thursday)
Departure time: 13:20 p.m.
Meeting point: bus stop in front of JR Takayama Station
(NOT Nohi public Bus Terminal)
Tour Fee: 4,400 yen per person / 3,900 yen per person(J-hopper Takayama Guesthouse Guests only)
Fee includes:  - Round-trip bus tickets between Takayama and Shirakawago (50 mintues by bus)
                        - English-speaking tour guide


Itinerary at a glance(Times may be subject to change)
Depart Takayama station
Arrive Shirakawa-go
Observation point
Walk around the village
Duburoku Festival
Depart Shirakawa-go
Arrive Takayama station

Enrollment and inquiries: email to tour@j-hoppers.com or call 0577-62-9545.


白川鄉在秋天會舉辦一年一度的濁酒節,節日期間旅客喝上由1月開始釀製混有米飯的白濁酒,只要買上大會的指定的酒柸,你便可盡情暢飲!在會場之一的白川八幡神社,會舉行各式各樣的節日慶祝活動,包括日本傳統小食攤位,舞獅及傅統舞蹈等。巴士團也會到荻町城迹瞭望台,是俯瞰村落風光的絕好場所。想盡情暢飲, 一嘗日式傅統小食,觀賞傅統舞蹈及歌謠表演,不要錯過在世界文化遺產感受傳統節日的難得機會,快來參加我們的白川鄉濁酒節特色巴士團!
日期: 20151014日及15(及週四)
集合時間 :下午1320
集合地點: JR高山站前巴士站

費用: 4,400 日圓(1人計算) / 3,900日圓(只適用於在J-hopper高山背包旅館住宿的旅客),包括來回高山到的白川鄉巴士車費(車程為50分鐘)及英語領隊。
活動詳情: 13:20-14:10 JR高山站出發到達白川鄉
14:10-14:30 到荻町城迹瞭望台,俯瞰村落風光
    14:30-17:00 到達白川鄉荻町及會場,是品嚐濁酒及地道的日式小食的自由活

查詢及報名: 電郵至tour@j-hoppers.com或致電0577-62-9545.

5 Aug 2015




日期: 2015829(週六)
集合時間 :下午250
集合地點: J-hopper高山旅館
      費用: 3,800 日圓(1人計算) ,包括來回J-hopper高山旅館到馬瀨川花火大會的巴士車費(車程為1.5小時)、馬瀨川花火大會入場門票、英語領隊、日式飯團便當及1罐含酒精或不合含酒精飲品。
活動詳情: 17:00-20:00 到達會場,品嚐地道的日式小食時間
                 20:00-21:00 煙火表演
                 21:00-22:00 由會場出發返回J-hopper高山旅館
查詢及報名: 電郵至tour@j-hoppers.com或致電0577-62-9545.
: -為避免擠迫,約17:00到達會場。回程時間有可能因堵車而有所延誤,敬請原諒。

2015 Amazing Bus Tour of Maze River Firework Festival

A spectacular fireworks display is going to be held in Maze River on 29th August, 2015.  Surrounded by heaps of mountains, you will be amazed with the boom of firework while enjoying traditional Japanese food and drinks! We had heaps of fun with our guests last year.  It is the most memorable firework that I have seen in my life. Please check on our pictures here:

Do not miss the last chance to indulge yourself in this memorable Japanese summer event! Check out the bus tour details here and register with our lovely staff:

Date: 29th August, 2014(Saturday)
Departure time: 14:50 p.m.
Meeting point: J-hopper Takayama Guesthouse
Tour Fee: 3,800 yen per person
Fee includes:     -Round-trip bus tickets between J-hopper Takayama and Maze River (1.5 hour by bus)
                         -Entrance fee 
                         - English-speaking tour guide
                         -A bento with Japanese rice ball and 1 can of drink(alcohol or without alcohol)
Schedule of the event: 17:00-20:00 Firework Festival Event + Free time to explore the Japanese food stalls
                                 20:00-21:00 Firework
                                 21:00-22:00  Bus back to J-hopper Takayama Guesthouse

Enrollment and inquiries: email to tour@j-hoppers.com or call 0577-62-9545.
-         Due to the influx of tourist to the event, guests will arrive to Maze River around
     17:00 p.m.  However, the return time may be delayed due to unexpected travel        congestion.
-         Free seating.  It is recommended to bring a portable chair or leisure sheet to cover the     ground.
-         Bus tour will be postponed to 30 August, 2015 due to poor weather condition.  

22 Jul 2015

Don't miss the firework festival this summer!!

Summer has finally arrived here and it is the time to wear yukata (traditional summer clothes in japan) and enjoy the firework in Takayama and Hida Furukawa.

Don't forget to enjoy Japanese snacks during the festival!!

Below are the details:

57th Hida Takayama Firework Festival

Wed, July 29

Many fireworks including rockets and special effects illuminate the night sky in Hida Takayama.

In case of rain, the event will be on the next day.)


Miyagawa Riverbank Park


10 minutes on foot from the JR Takayama Station

Hida Takayama Tezutsu (hand-held) Firework Display

Sunday, August 9


A temporary platform is built on the river bed of the Miyagawa River. Fireworks are set off bamboo cylinders handheld by “shooters”, who get showers of sparks from the fireworks, creating extremely exciting scenes.



Downstream of Yayoi-bashi Bridge on the Miyagawa River


15 minutes on foot from the JR Takayama Station

Hida Furukawa Firework Festival

Thu, August 13

Many fireworks including rockets and special effects illuminate the night sky in Hida Furukawa.




Matsubara Chiyo Park


15 minutes on foot from JR Hida Furukawa Station  


11 Apr 2015

Amanohashidate, Ine and Miyama

Have you heard about the above places before?  It sounds not familiar to me as well.  By conducting a tour to Kansai in March, I visited all of them in 2 days.  Amanohashidate is counted among Japan's three most scenic views alongside Miyajima and Matsushima.  We arrived the top of the Kasamatsu park by the cable car and a breath-taking view is in front of us.  I tried to turn back, bending over and observe the view between my legs as this position is famous for viewing the exact scenery as if we are standing.  I find it interesting to view by this position.  If you have an opportunity to visit Amanhashidate, don’t miss it! 

We visited Ine, a fish village with 250 boat houses (Funayas). The first level of the boat house is to store the boats whereas the second level is for residential purpose.  It is a quiet village with reputable sake brewery and lovely scenery.



Shirakawago has become a very popular tourist spot nowadays because of the gassho houses.  It is getting a bit crowded with tourists.  However, about 30 km north of Kyoto, Miyama is a rural area with 39 thatched-roof houses which is a valuable place to experience the authentic feel of rural Japan.  Strolling around the village while drinking Miyama-made coffee made us has a real taste of Miyama.  Miyama has only a few of shops where tourists can buy the fresh vegetables and dairy products.  In winter, Miyama becomes a snowy world where could be a recommended place of making lovely snow man and snow flight! 

2 Mar 2015

Shirakawago Light Up in Winter

Being a new comer of Takayama, I was looking forward to my first winter in Takayama and Shirakawago.  When I visited Shirakawago in April last year, I luckily visited the village at the times with the cherry (Sakura) blossom.  I was impressed with the scenery with the snow mountain and sakura trees.

Winter brings a new look of Shirakawago.  Heavy snow in Shirakawago makes the roofs, bridges, trees etc all covered in white.  When January comes, the nights of Shirakawago get busier than usual.  The village was lighted up during some weekends in January and February.  I was surprised with the stunning views from the observation point and also in every part in the village.  No wonder Shirakawgo light up event becomes such a popular must-see event in life time!

Although the light up event has been over, I also recommend you to visit the village in day time.  Do you believe you can see the snowy wonderland in reality?

J-hop tour provides morning and afternoon tour every day.  Please check it out in our website: