Discover Japan: 5 Amazing Farm Stays!

As an engineer at STAY JAPAN and a member of the product development team, I get to review and meet the owners of a huge number of amazing vacation properties, and really get to know the people behind the listing screens.

Farm Stay is quickly becoming one of the most popular ways to experience Japan because not only do you get to see what it is like to live and work on a Japanese farm, but you often get to enjoy home-cooked meals using the very produce you helped harvest!

And you get to enjoy that all with a very warm and welcoming family who will open their home to you like you are a member of their family.

In this article I’d like to introduce the top 5 farm stays we are working directly with at STAY JAPAN, and hopefully spark some travel inspiration for your next trip to Japan.

1. Farm Stay “Matoba”, Fukushima

Location: Nihonmatsu-shi, Fukushima (Northern Japan)

Summary: Probably one of the nicest and most friendly Japanese couple you will ever meet! This couple has hosted many guests from around the world, and will happily introduce you to many things about farming, Japanese culture and Japanese local food.

Charm points:

  • Beautiful location, surrounded by nature and a traditional Japanese house
  • Farming experiences available from end of February — end of June
  • Price includes 2 home-cooked meals and pickup from local station

2. Anekko House Farm Stay, Aomori

Meet the hosts of Anekko House and some of the family at the local store

Location: Hirosaki, Aomori (Northern Japan)

Summary: Hirosaki is just a quick train ride from Shin-aomori station, which can be reached in just a few hours by bullet train from Tokyo. With a warm and welcoming family and beautiful mountain views, this is a wonderful place to visit. I personally have stayed in Hirosaki twice and I still keep in touch with the families I stayed with there.

Charm points:

  • Tons of activities from painting to farming, hiking and snow activities
  • Seasonal dishes available year-round and home-cooked by your hosts
  • Family friendly and good for children!
  • Clear skies of Hirosaki are ideal for stargazing

3. Farm Stay “Yuntan”, Fukushima

Location: Nihonmatsu-shi, Fukushima (Northern Japan)

Summary: The host of “Yuntan” believes firmly in the rejuvenating effects of nature and locally-sourced food and produce. After becoming disillusioned with city life and work, he moved to the countryside and started this farm stay in a 100 year-old traditional Japanese house in the mountains. With vintage style and a cafe built-in to the guest house, this is a place you can stay in style while also benefiting from the rich mountain air and lush green forests.

Charm points:

  • Enjoy coffee from the cafe while looking out at the scenic mountain vistas
  • Hiking and farming experiences as well as 2 free meals included
  • Free pickup from the station
  • Guitars, percussion and other instruments on site for music enthusiasts!

4. Farm Stay “Nakajima”, Tokushima

Location: Mima city, Tokushima (2–3 hours from Osaka)

Summary: Featured on national Japanese television, the host of Nakajima began opening her farm to world travelers as a hobby and a way to do something new with her life. Welcoming guests gives her the opportunity to share the wonders and joys of her beautiful farm while also making new friends and practicing English.

Charm points:

  • The host is famous for meeting guests at the airport with their name on a card so you never feel lost from the moment you arrive
  • Tons of farming opportunities and the ability to experience typical Japanese culture and food
  • Home-cooked meals and relaxing underneath the Japanese “Kotatsu” (a heated table covered by a blanket that keeps your legs warm during the winter and while snacking and watching TV).

5. Farm Stay “Kuma”, Fukushima

Location: Nihonmatsu-shi, Fukushima (Northern Japan)

Summary: The host of this farm stay is also the founder of a local winery famous for making a wine served on the luxury train “Shikijima”. These hosts have opened their farm to give you the opportunity to enjoy Japanese farm life while tasting home-brewed cider. “Kuma” means “bear” in English and is the mascot for their wine.

Charm points:

  • Taste the home-brewed wine/cider made by your hosts
  • Very accommodating to those with food allergies or food restrictions
  • Friendly family atmosphere and 2 meals included (breakfast and dinner)
  • Hiking and farming experiences year-round

Conclusion

Farm Stay is not just a chance to experience something new but to connect with real Japanese people who will treat you like family and become friends for your lifetime.

The hosts we work with at STAY JAPAN are all so committed to giving you a unforgettable and comfortable experience and are really excited to introduce you to their local culture, foods and customs.

Farm Stay may be a bit of the beaten path, but prices are reasonable and usually include free pickup from local stations as well as home-cooked meals that you can enjoy around the family dinner table.

These are the 5 places I recommend, but there are many more out there! If you are looking for a farm stay or have other questions, please feel free to contact us at rgnl.new-pjt@hyakuren.org