Himeji Private Tour

©Himeji City
Surrounded by mountains and the Seto Inland Sea, Himeji is a small tranquil city thrived underneath the Himeji Castle. The city boasts the historical buildings, beautiful gardens, and a sacred temple situated on top of Mt.Shosha, called Engyoji temple, known as the filming place of 'The Last Samurai'. Thanks to the abundant sea blessings, the city cultivated a unique culinary culture. Fundamental Japanese seasonings such as dashi (broth), sake, soy sauce and salt have been developed and produced around the area. Take a journey of Himeji's rich history and culture with our nationally-licensed English speaking guide.

Sample Itinerary (6-hour tour)

Meet your guide at JR Himeji station and start your Himeji tour. Take a walk from the station through Otemae-dori Street where various shops and restaurants are lined up.

Himeji Castle, also known as White Heron Castle has been acclaimed with its graceful architecture. Recently underwent a massive renovation, the brilliant white castle with five-story main keep and three smaller keeps shine brightly under the blue clear sky. The castle was built in 1609 and has retained its original castle tower and other buildings for more than 400 years, surviving from wars and natural disasters until today. At one time, more than 3,000 castles with castle towers existed all over the country, however, only 12 castles with original castle towers remain now. Because of the aesthetic value of wooden structure and well-preserved architecture, the castle was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a national treasure.

Afterwards, move to the adjacent Kokoen garden, a reconstruction of the former lord's and samurai's residence of the castle. There are nine separate gardens making use of old walking paths around two ponds, a stream, and primeval forests.
After a long walk through the serene area, let's take a break at Souju-an. Enjoy a peaceful moment while sipping a bowl of green tea accompanied by Japanese sweets.

©Himeji City

The garden is especially worth visiting in the autumn foliage season around in the middle of November to the beginning of December.

©Himeji Oden Cooperative

For lunch, try some local foods around the area. Savor Oden, a local traditional Japanese dish made by simmering various ingredients in a broth of soy sauce, together with cooking sake, bonito flakes and seaweed. The ingredients include thickly sliced Japanese radish, boiled egg, deep-fried tofu, etc. Dip them into soy sauce with ginger like locals in Himeji.

After lunch, take a local bus to the Mt. Shosha ropeway terminal. A short ropeway ride brings you to the summit of Mt. Shosha where the last destination Shoshazan Engyoji Temple is located. Have a pleasant walk from the ropeway terminal for about 20 minutes, you will be welcomed by historical buildings of the temple. It is a temple of the Tendai sect found in 966, having eight buildings and seven Buddhist statues registered as National Important Cultural Properties. This place was used as a location of "The Last Samurai (2003)". Immerse yourself in the peaceful atmosphere hearing the chirping birds and the sound of the breeze in the forest.

©Himeji City

In the end, your guide will take you back to Himeji station.

Optional destinations near Himeji

If you would like to visit other places around Himeji city such as the following places, please contact us so that we can modify the itinerary.

©Maiko Park
Situated on the east of Himeji, Akashi is a cozy fishing town facing the Seto Inland Sea. Visit Uonotana Shopping Street to enjoy a variety of local fresh seafood. Try akashiyaki, the local specialty made from egg-rich batter and octopus. This fluffy round food is very similar to takoyaki, Osaka's famous snack. However, some say akashiyaki is more delicate thanks to the way of serving with tasty fish broth. Akashi also boasts a 3911-meter long Akashi Kaikyo Bridge, the world's longest suspension bridge. Underneath the bridge, get a thrill out of a walk through Maiko Marine Promenade, a walkway with glass floors overlooking the ocean below. The observatory commands a panoramic bay view.

Awaji Island
©Awaji Yumebutai
Awaji Island, located Southwest of Himeji, is the largest island in the Seto Inland Sea blessed with a mild climate and abundant nature. Take a local bus to Awaji Yumebutai. This facility is designed by the leading Japanese architect, Tadao Ando. Visit Hyakudanen tiered garden, consists of a group of 100 square sized flower beds placed on the slope of the mountain spread over several levels. Enjoy seasonal flowers against a backdrop of Osaka Bay. Another highlight of Ando's architecture in this area is Honpukuji Temple. The unique architecture of this temple might change your impression of Japanese temple.

Tatsuno -Excursion to the old castle town Tatsuno (small Kyoto)-
©Tatsuno City
Located western suburb of Himeji, Tatsuno thrived as a castle town in the Edo period (17th to 19th century). Saunter along the narrow streets lined with former samurai residences and warehouses of white and block walls. Meanwhile, you will reach Tatsuno Castle where a modern reconstruction of the castle building stands on the original stone wall built in the 17th century. In spring, the castle is adorned with cherry blossoms. After a short walk, you will find Shuentei tea house bestowed by Emperor of the time. It is recommended to visit in autumn to see beautiful colored leaves. Then, visit Usukuchi (light) Tatsuno Soy Sauce Museum, the world's first soy sauce museum. Light soy sauce originated in this town by using the clear water of Ibo River and quality salt produced in nearby Ako town. Learn the traditional soy sauce making method and its history.

Price for this sample itinerary

(price per group)

2 persons3 persons4 persons
6 hours 64,000 yen 69,000 yen 75,000 yen

(10% consumption tax included)

Including: Nationally-licensed English speaking tour guide, admission fees, public transportation, service charge and consumption tax
Not Including: Lunch, fee for transportations to/from Himeji Station in case guests come from the nearby city outside of Himeji

  1. Our private tours can be customized to your interests and preferences. Let us know any place you wish to visit. If you would like to include one of the optional sites among above-mentioned "Optional destinations near Himeji", please let us know.
  2. The price is for the sample itinerary above. Price may be subject to change depending on the options you choose.
  3. This itinerary assumes starting and ending at Himeji Station. If you would like to start or end in other cities, please contact us for the itinerary and price.
  4. Private car can be arranged for extra fee.
  5. Tours can be arranged for larger group. We will recommend appropriate transportation taking your group size into consideration.


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