Musubi: Curating unique Japan experiences for sophisticated travellers

farm and picnic

Farm & Picnic
Taste the real Japan

Itadakimasu! Japan is a nation that showcases its culture through its incredible food. Whether it’s ‘omotenashi’ hospitality, the clear embrace of nature’s diverse four seasons, or the masterful training that goes into being a culinary specialist. You can practically taste the history, culture, and legacy of Japan in its food.
While dining at a restaurant is always an excellent option, there are other, more hands-on ways to learn about the Japanese culinary world, and Musubi has been hard at work, connecting with locals to create such an experience.

'Farm and Picnic' is a boutique culinary tour designed to showcase the rich culture and picturesque surroundings of Koga, the epitome of local Japan, a township in Ibaraki that sits on the cusp of neighboring prefectures Saitama and Tochigi. In collaboration with local makers, chefs, tea producers, and travel experts, this one-day experience is designed to offer guests an unparalleled insight into the nation's most authentic, local, and unique cultures.

We’ll take you on a day-long adventure through a corner of the country you’ve never seen before. Learn about the lay of the land with a hands-on tea-making experience, craft your own bento (lunch) boxes with a local rice-store owning "okaasan" (mother/ aunty), and enjoy the fruits of your labor with a picnic in the naturally beautiful farmlands of Koga.

Koga: The heart of regional Japan

Koga is situated at the southwestern corner of Ibaraki, 75 minutes by car or an hour by train from Tokyo. It is probably best known for its 250,000 square meter Koga Kubo Park, home to the colorful Peach Blossom Festival, which takes place from late March to early April each year.

The town has a population of around 140,000 residents, which is rather regional by Japanese standards, making it an ideal destination witnessing just what the ‘local’ side of Japan looks like. The people of Koga are driven by ingenuity and a passion for traditional Japanese cuisine and culture. Home to excellent sake breweries, rice stores, tea fields, and farms, Koga is a small town with big hearts and plenty of dreams.

Tea, rice stores, and local experts

During the Farm and Picnic tour, guests meet a cross-section of the Koga community through small workshops and experiences. From the owner of the 200-year-old rice shop and the family who run Yoshida Tea Farm and Room’z Tea Cafe, to the guides and curators of the experience, each of the people you’ll meet and learn from are experts in their respective fields and passionate advocates for their culture.

Optional extras

Guests are welcome to extend their trip with a visit to one of Koga’s many other attractions, curated specifically for the guests’ interests. Some potential locations include Koga Kubo Park, (home to 1,500 plum blossoms in March), a local market or pub visit, a local festival, or something else entirely! Just let us know what you’re interested in and we’re sure we can find something special.

If you wish to start a private car journey from your hotel in Tokyo, we can arrange a private car and a guide to meet you from your hotel lobby. Please contact us for more information.
Farm & Picnic

Itinerary

  • 10:30 - Pick up at Koga Station. Covid safety check (temperature check, health check, etc).
  • 11:00 - Walk and Arrive at Komegin Rice Store. At this 200 year old store, you'll meet the owner, learn about the significance of the place and under the watchful guidance of your teacher, you'll make omusubi onigiri for your bento box.
  • 12:00 - Travel to Yoshida Tea Garden. The farm was established in 1839, and the farm’s new cafe, room'z tea is run by the farm-owner’s three sons.
  • 12:30 - 15:20 - Enjoy your onigiri and bento box with a picnic in the stunning surrounds of Yoshida Tea Garden. Following the lunch, you’ll enjoy some award winning teas with a tea tasting experience and complementary sweets at room'z tea, the farm’s onsite store/ cafe.
  • 14:30 (appx) - Tea blending class at Akiba Noen. Hiroko grows a wide variety of herbs, come of which are produced only at three farms in Japan. Make your own tea and learn about its benefits in "herb tea sessions".
  • 15:30 - Finish the tour and head back to the station.

    Optional tour extension after 15:30 until 17:00*
    *Entrance fee, Taxi fare are not included.
  • Potential tour extension themes
    Koga Kubo Park, home to 1,500 plum blossoms in March
    Local market and beer tour
    Local festival tours
    Visit a local pub
    Exploring the farmer's market
    Touring a sake brewer
  • Tour Price
    We will make your original itinerary and a quote. Please feel free to contact us.
  • What's included
    - Private tour with a national licensed professional guide (10:30 - 17:00)
    - Rice Shop: Rice ball making lesson and bento lunch
    - Tea Farm: Sashima tea during picnic, tea farm tour, tea tasting session
    - Room'z tea: Matcha cake (green tea cake) or other sweets
    - Transport to tea garden
    This tour is designed to include transport and a guide to meet you at Koga station.
  • Optional extras
    If you wish to start a private car journey from your hotel in Tokyo, we can arrange a private car and a guide to meet you from your hotel lobby. Please contact us for more information.
  • Farm & Picnic
  • Farm & Picnic
  • Farm & Picnic
  • Want to let your interests guide you? Then why not check out our tours arranged by theme? Gastronomy, wellness, history, nature, adventure, or contact us for tailor-made options.

  • Have some spare time, and want to make the most of it? Whether it’s a one-day activity or a multi-day tour through some of the nation’s most fascinating cultural landmarks and offerings, we’ve got you covered. Food, spirituality, history and adventure, it’s all here.

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