News & Events
- 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.
- Karasuma Peninsula Hot Air Balloon Flight Experience
- This thrilling event allows you to take to the skies in an elegant hot air balloon and look out across all of Lake Biwa.
The balloon will rise to a height of 20m - 25m, giving you a 360 degree panoramic view of the lake and its environs.
After coming back down to earth you can also enjoy the delightful sights of one of the largest lotus growing operations in Japan.
July 27～29、August 3～5
From 6am to 9am (flight lasts about 5 minutes)
Karasuma Peninsula, Kusatsu City, Shiga
[Number of Places]
Approx. 250 on Fridays and Mondays / 350 on Saturdays and Sundays * Some spaces set aside for people without reservations
With Reservation: Adult (Junior High and older) 2,000 yen, children (4 and older) 1,000 yen
Without Reservation: Adult (Junior High and older) 2,500 yen, children (4 and older) 1,500 yen
Kusatsu City Tourist Association TEL: +81-77-566-3219
- 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.
- Lake Biwa Great Fireworks Festival
- Enjoy 10,000 fireworks launched into the air over Lake Biwa, a stunning display of light that plays out in harmony with jets of fountain water. As 350,000 people throng the banks of the lake every year, incredible fireworks such as star mines are launched against a backdrop of verdant nature. The venue also offers paid seating, from which you can get the best possible view of all the action. If you wish to use them then you will need to purchase a Ticket for Paid Seating. Please see the website for more details. http://www.biwako-visitors.jp/hanabi/
Date : August 8 ,2019 7:30pm-8:30pm
- SHIGA BIWAKO Tourist Information
- The Kansai Tourist Information Center Kyoto provides appealing tourism information on the history, culture, rich nature, and varied activities boasted by Shiga Prefecture. Shiga and Lake Biwa can be reached in around 10 minutes by train from Kyoto, so why not drop by!
Address: Kansai Tourist Information Center Kyoto, Kyoto Tower 3F, 721-1 Higashishiokojicho, Shichijo-sagaru Karasuma-dori, Shimogyo-ku, Kyoto city
Opening Hours: 10:00 - 18:00 (closed Dec 30 - Jan 3)
Telephone Number: +81-75-341-0280
- 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.
- Finding Fireflies!
- Blessed with beautifully clean air and water, taking in the sight of fireflies dancing in the night has become a summer tradition in Shiga.
Moriyama City and Maibara City both hold events related to fireflies.
Moriyama has long been known as region where Luciola "Japanese fireflies" gather,
and during the Taisho period (1912 - 1926) it was designated the first Natural Monument in Japan.
During the flying season at the end of May, you can see fireflies even close to the station.
Best Time for Viewing：Late May - early June
Access：A free shuttle bus departs from Moriyama Station to the firefly viewing spot (only during the period of the event)
The "Heavenly River Firefly Festival" is held in early June, during which you can watch Luciola "Japanese fireflies" dancing over the Amanogawa River.
Firefly lanterns are also placed along the walk routes in the vicinity of the venue, allowing the viewing of illusory firefly dances.
Best Time for Viewing：Early June - mid June
Access：5 min. on foot from JR Omi-Nagaoka Station
- 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.
- Lake Biwa Flower Fountain
- The Lake Biwa Flower Fountain is one of the largest fountains in the world, located in the offing at Otsu Port, the gateway to Lake Biwa tourism.
Completed in March of 1995, it has become beloved by many locals and visitors alike.
Against the backdrop of beautiful Lake Biwa, the water reaches heights of up to 40m into the air, with varying volumes and angles depicting all sorts of shapes.
During the daytime you can enjoy the cool and refreshing scenery, while at night a fantastical world of colorful illumination is created.
Afternoon: 12:00 - 13:00
Evening (Sat, Sun, Holidays): 15:00 - 16:00 *Not on weekdays
Night: Between 18:00 - 21:00 *Changes depending on the day. The fountain is also illuminated.
4 min. on foot from Keihan Biwako Hamaotsu Station
- 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 email@example.com
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 firstname.lastname@example.org
[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.
- Learn About Japanese Technology! Factory Tours!
Here you can view the history of KOKUYO, going back more than 100 years, through a range of rare and valuable materials. This is one of the largest notebook factories in Japan.
[Access]15 min. by taxi from Ohmi Railway Echigawa Station
[Participation Charges]100yen (reservation required)
Take a tour of a Kirin plant, where both soft drinks and beer are made. You can even sample freshly made beverages for yourself.
[Access]15 min. on foot from Ohmi Railway Screen Station
Observe toilets being made. You can also experiencing pouring a mold for a miniature toilet.
[Access]10 min. on foot from JR Mikumo Station
[Participation Charges]Free (reservation required)
UCC were the first company in the world to create canned coffee. A concierge will join you in experiencing how their delicious coffee is made.
[Access]15 min. on foot from Ohmi Railway Echigawa Station
[Participation Charges]Free (reservation required)
- Kanou Shoujuan Sunai no Sato Japanese Confection Making Experience
- Kanou Shoujuan Sunai no Sato is a longstanding Japanese style confectioner, now synonymous with Shiga. Along with delicious delicacies, they also offer a chance to make your own confections.
Using ingredients carefully selected by the highly skilled Kanou Shoujuan staff, this classroom provides the opportunity to make Japanese confections that are overflowing with a sense of the seasons.
Under the watchful guidance of skilled craftspeople, enjoy this deliciously creative experience in a peaceful and welcoming atmosphere.
[Day Held]Every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday (*May change depending on the season)
[Time]10:45 - 12:15 (Japanese confection making)
[Participation Charges]2700yen (including tax) per person
[No. of Places]40 people (reservations closed once full)
[Things to Bring ] Nothing in particular (aprons etc. will be provided)
[Applications](Reception 9:00 - 17:00)
*Please make a reservation at least 4 days before the date on which you wish to participate.