Visiting the Tea Ceremony Master's Home & Countryside

An elegant lunch arrangement for tea ceremony style lesson at a local home, fun ride along the coast to Shirahige Shrine & spectacularly beautiful Japanese rice terraces.

 On this tour, you will be visiting the Takashima area on the northwest side of Lake Biwa that offers exceptionally charming views of both the lake and mountains.

 In the morning, you will enjoy cycling leisurely along the lakeside following a beach known for its white sand and green pine trees as well as visiting Shirahige shrine where the Shinto god of longevity is believed to reside.

 After the refreshing cycle ride, you will have a chance to learn about tea ceremony style lunch preparation as well as authentic tea ceremony at a local house. 

 Ms. Sato, a tea ceremony master with a charming smile, will teach you how to arrange food beautifully. You will also experience matcha green tea in the authentic Japanese style tearoom while learning the essence of tea ceremony. Enjoy a special time in this peaceful setting.


 After the lovely encounter with the tea ceremony master, you will take a taxi to reach the village that sits up amongst terraced rice fields to enjoy the most commanding views of the picturesque rice terraces. Those with an interest in photography will particularly enjoy the vantage points this access provides.

 We take a leisurely stroll down through the quaint country village, where life seems a bit slower and a bit more robust many miles from the nearest convenience store.

Important Information

 We would like to inform guests who are interested in this tour that a part of the bicycle ride, about 20 minutes each way, to the Shrine Gate in the lake is along a quite busy lakeshore road. Although there is a side pavement that guests may ride along, we ask that participants who wish to go to the shrine are confident riders and, if children are accompanying you, that you feel confident about your children's ability and safety as well

Departure Point

JR Omi-Takashima Station (Kosei-Line), 40 minutes (7th stop) from JR Kyoto Station by a special rapid service (express) train. Tran fare from JR Kyoto to Omi-Takashima is 840JPY.

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What will entertain and interest you ?

 After a 40-minute scenic train ride from JR Kyoto station, you will arrive at JR Omi-Takashima station (Kosei-Line).

 Enjoy the lovely countryside and lake views. 

Shirahige Shrine

 The almost perfectly flat Lakeside road is ideal for a memorable bicycle ride. Feel the refreshing breeze from the lake while riding bicycles.

 You will be visiting Shirahige Shrine, the oldest in Shiga prefecture, with its impressive view of a Torii gate standing in the water and a center of devotion for many local people.

 With many water springs, this part of the lake around the shrine appears particularly serene, creating an even more unforgettable impression for those who visit. 

cycling to Shirahige Shrine
© Felicity Tillack

*From December to March, we will take a taxi to Shirahige Shrine instead of bicycling, due to the cold weather and snow. You can still enjoy the beautiful scenery passing by through the car window.

Lunch arrangement for tea ceremony style
Lunch arrangement for tea ceremony style

 After bidding farewell to the shrine, pedal back and arrive at the beautiful house of a Tea Ceremony Master. Here, you can learn about tea ceremony style lunch preparation as well as authentic tea ceremony.

 Enjoy beautifully decorated lunch & Matcha green tea while chatting with Tea Ceremony Master. 


 After lunch, you will visit tucked away village in the mountains by taxi. This peaceful village surrounded by hundreds of terraced rice fields offer you spectacular views. Step outside to enjoy the beautiful views of the terraced rice fields, strolling among them. This will be the time for you to take some wonderful photos. Your guide will take you through the village to the view points.  

 At the end of the tour, you will leisurely stroll down through the village to the local bus stop to make your way back to Omi-Takashima station. 

Additional information

  • The tour will be cancelled if the chance of rain for the date of the tour is forecast at 70% or more on the day prior.
  • As the bicycle does not have a basket, please bring a knapsack to take around your personal possessions.
  • Comfortable clothes for cycling are highly recommended. 
  • Please bring a raincoat in case of a change in the weather conditions.
  • Please understand that the itinerary may be changed without notice due to weather, traffic and unexpected emergency situations.

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