News & Events
- Seeking entries for the Kawarake-nage (ceramic plates throwing) Championship
- Chikubushima island is famous for its powerful spiritual energy. It is said that if you can throw kawarake (ceramic plates) from here to pass through the torii gate jutting out into Lake Biwa, your wish will come true. That just might be the case, if your wish is to win some fabulous prizes, because the Kawarake Throwing Championship is now looking for participants!
Date: November 18 (Sun) 2018 10:00 - 15:00
Foreigners may enter for free under certain conditions (must post the events of the day to social media)
Japanese people may enter for \3000. This includes boat passage, lunch, and entry to the island.
Applications: Nagahama Tourism Association Tel: +81-749-65-6521
- Enjoy the long fall nights in Shiga
- Shiga Prefecture has plenty of night events to let you enjoy the longer nights of the fall!
Omi Taga “Kami Akari” From sunset until 21:00
Mystical illuminations will light up Taga Taisha Shrine until November 30, 2018.
Moon Watching Evenings 18:00 - 21:00
Relax and simply enjoy the passage of time in the Genkyu Rakurakuen garden, taking in the view of Hikone Castle and the beautiful moon.
- Lodgings in Shiga temples! Become a monk for one night
- So-called “monk’s quarters” are popular lodging facilities found in Japanese temples, allowing you to stay the night and experience what it is like to train as a monk, and such temples offering lodgings to the general public can also be found in Shiga. While spending the night, you can practice Zen meditation, copy scripture, and eat the same vegetarian food as the monks, resulting in an experience that’s healthy and spiritual for both body and mind!
Hieizan Enryakuji Kaikan
http://syukubo.jp/ (Japanese only)
Stay at the World Heritage site of Hieizan Enryakuji!
The lodgings here take the form of a single building rented to one group per day, making it perfect for families or groups.
While staying at the lodgings here, you can also experience Japanese culture such as the tea ceremony etc.
Shares facilities with the Youth Hostel Saikyoji (http://www.jyh.or.jp/e/i.php?jyhno=5108)
- Asamiya Tea, One of the top five Tea brands of Japan
- Have you ever heard of “Asamiya Tea”? It is counted as one of the top five tea brands of Japan, with a history of 1200 years.
Said to be the oldest tea in Japan, when compared to tea produced in other regions Asamiya has larger, thicker leaves that are yellow rather than green, and is characterized by a flavor that blends bitterness and sweetness.
[Places to Enjoy Asamiya Tea]
Yamamotoen With Tea
Enjoy a menu packed with unique items, including Asamiya tea smoothies.
The roll-cake made with Asamiya tea is especially popular.
39-1 Shigarakicho Shimoasamiya, Koga City, Shiga, 529-1842
- Lodgings in Shiga that welcome your beloved pet dog
- If you’re bringing the whole family to Shiga, surely you don’t want your pet pooch to miss out. The good news is, they don’t have to! Take a look at this introduction to lodging facilities were dogs are also welcome guests.
L' Hôtel Du Lac
Regina Resort Biwako Nagahama
Royal Oak Hotel Spa & Gardens
Note: Has a separate pet hotel on the grounds.
- Glamping in Shiga!
- Introduction to facilities on Lake Biwa and in the surrounding area where you can enjoy some glamping.
L' Hôtel Du Lac
Experience glamping while looking out over Lake Biwa and Chikubushima island.
Okubiwako Makino Grand Park Hotel
Enjoy standup paddle boarding and kayaking on a private beach.
Glamping facilities that allow BBQs and standup paddle board yoga to be enjoyed without the need to bring in any of your own equipment.
The largest glamping facility in Shiga.
- Take a Look Around Hikone-jo Castle at Night with Hikone-jo Castle Night Fun
- Hikone-jo Castle Night Fun is an annual event that allows the castle to be enjoyed at night, something that isn’t normally possible. You can look out over the nightlights of the castle town of Hikone from the castle tower square, experiencing something that you can’t normally do except on this one special day.
The theme this year is “feudal cosplay,” and we are looking for people willing to participate dressed in costumes from Japan’s turbulent feudal period.
Date & Time September 29 (Sat) 2018, 6:30 p.m. - 9:00 p.m. (last entry at 8:30 p.m.)
Location Hikone Castle
Participation Fee Entry Free
You can apply for Feudal Cosplay here: http://www.hikoneshi.com/jp/yagaku-cp/apply
- Three Islands on Lake Biwa
- Lake Biwa, the largest lake in Japan, has three islands that can be visited, with regular routes sailing between them and the mainland.
A place of worship since ancient times, and also more recently popular as a spiritual power spot. It’s said that if you write a wish on a small tile and manage to throw it through the Torii gate then that wish will come true.
5 min. on foot from JR Imazu Station, approx. 15 min. by ship from Omi-Imazu Port
Charges: Adult 2,590 yen, elementary school child 1,300 yen
10 min. on foot from JR Nagahama Station, approx. 30 min. by ship from Nagahama Port
Charges: Adult 3,070 yen, elementary school child 1,540 yen
The only inhabited lake island in Japan. With no cars and no supermarket on the island, it allows you to take a look at life from olden times. Also famous for food using fish from Lake Biwa.
Take the Kyukamura-bound bus via Chomeiji Temple and alight at the Horikiriko bus stop. Approx. 10 min. by ship from Horikiri Port.
Charges: 500 yen one way.
An uninhabited island with sheer cliffs, the entire island is said to be a spiritual power spot. There are numerous famous places to see, including the Nichiren school Kentoji Temple and the stone monument said to have oozed blood when key Shogunate figure Naosuke Ii was assassinated.
Approx. 10 min. by free bus from JR Hikone Station, approx. 20 min. by ship from Hikone Port.
Charges: Without landing on the island 1,000 yen
With landing on the island 1,500 yen
*Children half price.
- Summertime Fun with the Kids in Shiga
- Shiga is a great place to spend your summer holidays! Here’s an introduction to sightseeing spots you can enjoy along with your kids.
You can also experience a simulator of Yanmar construction machinery.
Rosa & Berry Tawada
Ride a steam train and play with ponies, sheep for a full day of fun.
Planetarium “Digital Star Dome Hotaru”
Located inside the Lake Biwa Marriott Hotel. The Pocket Monster program is particularly popular.
- Main Fireworks Displays in Shiga Prefecture
- Nagahama and Kita-Biwako Great Fireworks
July 27 (Fri) 7:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.
Venue: Nagahama Port (Nagahama City)
Access: 10 min. on foot from JR Nagahama Station
Inquiries: Nagahama Fireworks Executive Committee, telephone: ＋81-749-65-6521
Hikone and Kita-Biwako Great Firework Festival
August 1 (Sat) 7:45 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
Venue: Matsubara Swimming Beach (Hikone City)
Access: Special shuttle bus from JR Hikone Station
Inquiries: Kita-Biwako Great Fireworks Executive Committee,
Lake Biwa Great Fireworks Festival
August 7 (Tue) 7:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m. *If delayed: August 10 (Fri)
Venue: Otsu Port (Otsu City)
Access: 15 min. on foot from JR Zeze Station or Otsu Station
5 min. on foot from Keihan Hamaotsu Station
Inquiries: Lake Biwa Great Fireworks Executive Committee
- Special Experiences in Temples in Shiga
- Visiting temples in Shiga Prefecture can be about more than just sightseeing. A variety of experiences are on offer that allow you to come into contact with Buddhist teachings, including but far from limited to Zen meditation and hand-copying sutras.
You can select the beads for the rosary yourself, from materials that include power stones and natural wood. Once the rosary is completed a monk will pray over it, allowing you to commune with Buddha by wearing it and bringing you lasting peace.
Time Required: Around 30 minutes
Charge: From \1,000
Inquiries: Mii-dera Temple firstname.lastname@example.org
Tosenkyo is a darts-style game played by the Japanese nobility, sometimes called “fan tossing” in English. Other experiences on offer include wearing a kimono and the tea ceremony, allowing you to enjoy various facets of Japanese culture.
Time Required: 2 hours 30 minutes
Inquiries: Enmanin email@example.com
[Experience the Diet of a Buddhist Monk]
The diet of a Buddhist monk is similar to a vegetarian diet, using no meat or fish, and was originally created for the purposes of the monks as they undergo their harsh training. It is suitable for everyone, including vegetarians.
- Become Beautiful in Shiga
- Life expectancy in Shiga Prefecture is the highest in Japan for men, and fourth in Japan for women. While seeking the secrets to longer life, then, women also come to seek beauty. Here’s an introduction to some literal beauty spots in Shiga!
Popular as a power spot among women seeking beauty. Muku trees of around 300 years old stand like beautiful women’s legs, and touching them is said to bring you blessings of beautiful skin and legs.
They are also known as “confession trees,” with the power to make people speak honestly about things they wouldn’t normally say when standing between the roots.
392 Toyomitsu, Aisho Town, Echigun, Shiga, 529-132
Ogoto Onsen was opened by Saicho, the great Buddhist teacher of Mt. Hiei, and is the closest hot spring area to Kyoto. The waters are effective for nerve pain, muscle pain, sensitivity to cold, recovery from exhaustion, and skin beautification. All of the inns and hotels in Ogoto Onsen use water direct from the source, without diluting it with other water.