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Private Washi Paper Making and Sake Brewery Tour from Tokyo

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2 travelers
    What to Expect
    On this tour, your English speaking tour assistant will meet you at the lobby of your accommodation in Tokyo or at Ogawamachi station (Tobu Tojo line). You will visit Ogawamachi in Saitama where Washi paper (traditional Japanese paper) was registered as an UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage in 2014. Ogawamachi is also the hometown of delicious sake, and you will visit a sake brewery that is known for its highest consecutive record winning Gold Winner sake brewery in Saitama prefecture. Your tour assistant will support your party by taking to all the places and translating at each location (no history/culture guide)

    Ogawamachi is in the west area of Saitama prefecture, and is known for its traditional Japanese washi paper industry. During the Edo period, as the number of residents and merchants increased so did the consumption of paper in Ogawamachi. Hosokawa-shi flourished in this area, producing high quality paper for many purposes, from religious scripts, architectural purposes, to fans and umbrellas.

    The key ingredients to making great sake is using high quality rice and water. The water used at the sake brewery you will visit is pumped from 130 metres underground. You will get a free taste of this water as well as a free sake tasting as part of the guided tour! 

    You will first visit a local Hosokawa-shi workshop in Ogawamachi, where you will meet a Master of Hosokawa-shi making, designated by the Prefectural Government of Saitama. The history of washi craftsmanship in this Ogawamachi area dates back to the 8th century, and later it prospered as a specialty place for washi craftsmanship. At the workshop, you will learn how traditional washi paper is made through a guided demonstration tour. Then, you will be able to experience making your own washi paper using traditional tools and materials! Durability is a major feature of Hosokawa-shi paper. 

    You will then have lunch at the nearby Yasuragi Peace House (10 mins from Washi place), a rural village house a that is more than 100 years old, serving various hand-made udon noodle dishes!

    After a delicious lunch, you will head to the Matsuoka Sake Brewery, established in 1851. You will be taken on a guided tour around the brewery and learn about the sake brewing process. You will have the chance to taste the “mother water” of the sake, in this brewery the water used to make the sake is pumped from 130 metres deep underground. At the end of the tour, after learning everything you need to know about the sake brewery process, you can enjoy a sake tasting (“Kampai!”). There are also non-alcoholic products such as the popular Daiginjo ice-cream.

    You will then return to the Hosokawa-shi workshop to pick up the dried washi paper you made earlier! Size is about 30cm x 45cm. The tour will conclude at Kawagoe station; however, you are free to wander around Kawagoe.
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    Important Information
    Departure Point
    Your hotel located in Tokyo 23 wards
    Departure Time
    8:00 AM
    Return Details
    Tour concludes at Kawagoe Station or Ogawamachi Station (or Ogawamachi station)
    • English-speaking tour assistant
    • Hotel pick-up
    • Washi making experience
    • Sake brewery tour and sake tasting
    • Taxi fare in the tour
    • Lunch fee
    • Hotel drop-off
    • Train fare in the tour
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    Additional Info
    • Confirmation will be received within 48 hours of booking, subject to availability
    • Not wheelchair accessible
    • Minimum age is 6 years
    • A maximum of 3 people per booking
    • Program offered in English
    • Minimum age is 6 years
    • This is a private tour/activity. Only your group will participate
    Cancellation Policy
    If you cancel at least 7 days in advance of the scheduled departure, there is no cancellation fee. If you cancel between 3 and 6 day(s) in advance of the scheduled departure, there is a 50 percent cancellation fee. If you cancel within 2 days of the scheduled departure, there is a 100 percent cancellation fee.
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    Key Details
    • Beauty of Japan
    • Duration: 24h
    • Mobile Ticket Accepted
    • Hotel Pickup
    • Languages Offered: English
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