#JapanAuthentic: Top 7 Things To do in Ine
07 September 2017
In a region that is known to be “Kyoto by the sea” lies a small town called Ine. With the best of both worlds- clear blue sea and fresh green mountains, it’s no wonder why this town has captured the heart of many whom have touch their waters. Famed for its Funaya boat houses and traditional lifestyle that lives on from the Edo period up till now, there are many activities that will give you a feel of authentic Japan. Getting there is not so easy. Starting withthe JR express train “Kounotori” northbound from Osaka station (1hr 15min), you’ll have to change to Kyotango railway “Hashidate” express train at Fukuchiyama station to Amano-Hashidate station (1hr 35min), then take a local Tankai bus to Ine (1hr). The whole travel takes about 3.5 hours but is worth the travel.
Considered to be one of the best places to stay in Ine is the Maruichi Boat House, where it is an actual Funaya boat house that has been renovated with modern settings. The house offers all of your typical amenities without breaking away from the tradition feel of the surrounding area. Relaxing on the balcony while soaking in the serene surroundings is in itself an experience not to be missed.
Take a tour and stroll around the streets of the funaya with a local guide while learning about the daily lifestyle of a local. During the tour, one can also experience the Mondori fishing technique, a unique technique that is used regularly in this part of the region and to top it off, taste some Japanese Sake at the end of the tour.
Ine Bay is a rich bay with may types of fish lurking around. Without having to travel far off shore, adults and kids alike are able to enjoy a fishing experience and even take home any big catches. Fishing rods, equipment and bait are all prepared for you so you can join in at anytime of your visit.
For a private tour on waters, sea taxis are available for you to hire for a ride along the coast of Ine. Perfect for photo taking and a clear view of the clustered funaya boat houses, the ride would take up to 30 mins and you’re able to call for one from anywhere as far as the bay of Ine.
Visit An Oyster Farm
Most sea taxis are operated by local fishermen, so be sure to ask about visiting an oyster farm and you might be lucky enough to get a fisherman who owns an oyster farm as well. These farms are located in the middle of the waters and the only way to get to them are by boat.
For the freshest seafood in a new sea-to-table restaurant is Wadatsumi, which is located at the water’s edge in the picturesque town. The restaurant serves only seafood—brought in from the sea each morning, and prepared in a range of well-executed traditional styles. Diners at Wadatsumi may also see the fishermen catch their meal through the broad band of windows that look out onto the bay behind the chef.
With unusual rice and yeast combinations producing new and unique types of Sake, Mukai Shuzo is a place not to be missed while in Ine. Its specialty is a rare red Sake made with red rice that has an intense smoky taste and sweet fresh acidity with a long finish. And to top it off, you can even drive up your boat along the side of Mukai Shuzo to buy a crate of sake!
Catch the full episodes of Japan Authentic on Life Inspired’s Youtube channel here.
For more information on the authentic lifestyle in rural Japan, visit https://authentic-visit.jp/.