Recommended Tour "6"
Fancy a Tipple?
Try this Sake Tour
Iwakuni City Higashi Hiroshima City
apanese sake, or 'nihonshu', has all the subtleties and nuances of wine - one reason it continues to grow in popularity both in Japan and across the world. This sake itinerary will take you to some of the most famous sake breweries and sake districts in Yamaguchi and Hiroshima and famous sights nearby.
From Hiroshima Station to Iwakuni Castle
By Train : From Hiroshima Station to Iwakuni (50 mins via the JR Sanyo Line)
By Bus : From Iwakuni Station, ride on an Iwakuni Bus and get off at Kintai-kyo Bridge Bus Center (15 mins)
On Foot : 10 mins to Sanroku Station
By Ropeway : 3 mins to Sancho Station
A mere 10 minutes away from the ropeway that runs from Kintaikyo Bridge, this picturesque castle set atop of Mount Shiroyama has breathtaking views of Iwakuni and the plains below. Originally built in 1608, the castle was destroyed in 1615 by the Tokugawa Shogunate who were looking to consolidate their power throughout Japan. It was rebuilt in 1962 in a slightly different location on the mountain for aesthetic reasons.
From Iwakuni Castle to Kintai-kyo Bridge
By Ropeway : From Sancho Station to Sanroku Station (3 mins)
The Kintaikyo Bridge
There has been a bridge spanning the Nishiki River near Iwakuni since 1673. It used to lead to the main gate of Iwakuni Castle. Although the bridge has fallen victim to extreme weather on two occasions, the current wooden incarnation of the Kintaikyo Bridge is a sight to behold. Recognized as a national site of special scenic beauty, the bridge is set off throughout the year by a backdrop of cherry blossoms during spring, fireworks in summer, golden autumn foliage and winter snow.
- Iwakuni Sushi
Sushi comes in many shapes and sizes and Iwakuni has its own particular take on this much-loved national dish. The flat, pressed style of Iwakuni Sushi is created in layers and then cut into squares. Originally made as a way of preserving the sushi, pop into a food market or a delicatessen to sample this special type of sushi.
- Iwakuni Ice Cream
It might surprise you, but Kintaikyo Bridge is heaven for ice cream lovers. As soon as you reach the bridge, you'll see why. The ice cream shops that line both ends of the bridge sell over 100 different varieties and flavors of ice cream. Make sure you take the chance to try some unusual flavors.
From Kintai-kyo Bridge to Asahishuzo Sake Brewery
By Bus : From Kintai-kyo Bus Center, ride an Iwakuni Bus and get off at Iwakuni Station (15 mins)
By Train : From Iwakuni Station to Suo-Takamori Station (32 mins via the Gantoku Line)
The sake Dassai produced at the Asahi Brewery is one of the most celebrated in Japan. This popular sake brand is now being exported throughout the world and gaining more global attention. After a 40-minute tour of the brewery, for a small price you can indulge your taste buds and sample the different varieties of sake on offer. Don't miss out on the special
From Asahi Sake Brewery to the hotel in Hiroshima
By Taxi : 15 mins to Suo-Takamori Station
By Train : From Suo-Takamori Station to Iwakuni Station (32 mins via the Gantoku Line), and from Iwakuni Station to Hiroshima Station (50 mins via the JR Sanyo Line)
From Hiroshima City to Kamotsurushuzo Sake Brewery
By Train : From Hiroshima Station to Saijo Station (35 mins via the JR Sanyo Line)
Higashi Hiroshima City
Situated inside the famous sake brewery district in Saijo, the Kamotsuru Brewery is regarded by many as one of the finest breweries in Japan. Its sake regularly wins national competitions and Kamotsuru's Tokusei Gold Daiginjo shot to fame in 2014 when the Japanese Prime Minister poured a glass of it to President Barack Obama during his visit to Tokyo. That particular sake comes with actual gold flakes shaped like cherry blossom flowers inside the bottle.
- Saijo Sake Town
The town of Saijo in Higashi Hiroshima City is famed for its nine sake breweries located along one sake street. Visit the individual breweries to purchase their sake directly at the source. Most breweries offer free tasting so you can try before you buy. Saijo holds a sake festival every year attended by thousands of sake lovers. All the breweries open their doors and the sake flows.
- Bishyu Hotpot
This hotpot was originally created for the workers at the sake breweries. Because they needed their tastebuds unaffected to make sake, these hotpots were delicately flavored on purpose without any sugar or soy sauce. Each brewery had its own special recipe and now a host of restaurants in Saijo offer this unique hotpot to visitors.