Whereas it could not have the status and quirkiness of Tokyo or the historical past and tradition of Kyoto, town of Kobe deserves a spot in your Japan journey itinerary. On this Kobe journey information, we share among the enjoyable issues to do in Kobe, from dipping your toes in historical sizzling springs to sampling the scrumptious wagyu beef that shares its title.
If that is your first time studying concerning the metropolis of Kobe, you aren’t alone. It’s not usually ranked excessive on the listing of locations to go to in Japan. It’s typically ignored and most definitely underrated. We hope to vary that.
Positioned 30 km (19 miles) west of Osaka, many guests will journey to Kobe as a day journey from Osaka or Kyoto. When you don’t have a number of time, this is perhaps your only option.
Once we visited Japan again in 2009, that was our method. We made Kyoto dwelling base and took day journeys to Kobe, Osaka, Nara and Hiroshima. The Japanese rail system is quick and environment friendly, so it’s straightforward to cowl a number of floor.
Nonetheless, in case you have a couple of days to spend in Kobe, you’ll discover loads of enjoyable and fascinating issues to maintain you busy and entertained. This weblog put up highlights the issues we did throughout our three days in Kobe.
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**Observe – we visited Japan previous to the pandemic. It’s clever to examine journey advisories for Japan earlier than making journey preparations. A few of these advisable issues to do in Kobe is probably not open through the pandemic.
1. Attempt some scrumptious Kobe Beef
First on the listing of issues to do in Kobe is to indulge within the delicacy that shares it’s title – Kobe beef. Until, after all, you don’t eat meat. If that’s you, skip to the subsequent advice – nothing to see right here.
Kobe is legendary for wagyu beef, arguably the best minimize of beef on the earth, which comes from the Tajima pressure of Japanese Black cattle. Individuals journey from far and broad to style this mouth-watering, perfectly-marbled beef.
Just like consuming Champagne in Champagne, France or sipping port wine in Porto, Portugal, you will need to attempt Kobe Beef in Kobe. There are particular guidelines about what beef might be labeled as true Kobe Beef and Kobe is the place you’ll discover the actual deal.
The second you step off the prepare at Kobe-Sannomiya Station you’re reminded that Kobe Beef is a giant deal in these elements. Indicators and ads are scattered all through town selling a wide range of methods to indulge your self, from Kobe beef teppanyaki to Kobe beef sushi.
Kobe beef is an costly minimize of meat, so your journey finances will dictate the easiest way to expertise this celebrated Japanese delicacies. Excessive-end steakhouses supply multi-course meals that serve a wide range of cuts and types of wagyu beef. Go forward and splurge; you’re price it.
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Most eating places that serve Kobe beef could have a black cow statue exterior the restaurant. That is the Japanese Black, which is the breed of Japanese beef cattle often known as wagyu.
Kobe beef sushi
Many ramen and sushi eating places in Kobe will serve Kobe beef sushi. When you’re not fascinated about dropping huge coin at a elaborate Kobe beef restaurant, beef sushi is a cheap solution to pattern the products.
A single piece of Kobe beef nigiri prices 800 Yen (approx $10.00 CAD).
Kobe Beef Ramen
There are various methods to get the tasty wagyu in your stomach. The above was captured at a small ramen restaurant in Kobe that was advisable to us by mates. This miso ramen dish is served with 4 alternative ways to eat Kobe beef.
Above is a photograph of Kobe beef ramen Yazawa. It’s small, so that you would possibly miss it.
2. Kobe Port Tower
Probably the most recognizable landmark in Kobe is the Kobe Port Tower. The 354 foot tower has a number of commentary flooring that supply 360 diploma panoramic views of town, harbor and Mount Rokko.
Kobe Port Tower is open yr spherical. Relying on if you journey to Kobe, the perfect time to go to the Port Tower commentary deck is simply earlier than sundown. Town sparkles at night time.
Admission to the Port Tower is 700 yen for adults ($9.00 CAD) and 300 yen for youngsters ($4.00).
Extra information concerning the Kobe Tower right here.
3. Meriken Park
Meriken Park is a waterfront park positioned within the Kobe port space. It’s dwelling to a few of Kobe’s most iconic structure, together with the Kobe Port Tower, Kobe Maritime Museum (pictured above) and Meriken Park Oriental Lodge.
The Kobe Maritime Museum can be dwelling to Kawasaki Good Instances World, a museum devoted to the 100+ yr historical past of Kawasaki and it’s many merchandise, together with Shinkansen trains, jet planes, helicopters and bikes. Extra information concerning the museum right here.
Additionally, you will discover the Port of Kobe Earthquake Memorial Park on the east facet of Meriken Park. The Kobe Japan earthquake, or Nice Hanshin earthquake, occurred on January 17, 1995 within the southern a part of Hyogo Prefecture. The earthquake killed 5,378 individuals, broken or destroyed 152,000 buildings, and is claimed to the most costly earthquake ever to strike an city space [source].
4. Mosaic Ferris Wheel
When you’re visiting Kobe with youngsters, the Mosaic Ferris Wheel at Kobe Harborland is a enjoyable exercise. Just like the commentary deck on the Port Tower, the Mosaic Huge Ferris Wheel presents 360 diploma views of the waterfront, port, metropolis and mountains.
The Kobe Huge Ferris Wheel operates from 10:00 AM to 10:00 PM. Every experience prices 800 yen for adults ($10.00 CAD). Every air conditioned gondola suits as much as 4 individuals.
All smiles contained in the Mosaic Ferris Wheel at Harborland.
Panoramic views of the Port Tower and Mt. Rokko from contained in the Mosaic Ferris Wheel.
The Mosaic Ferris Wheel has over 120,000 LEDs that placed on a present at night time.
5. Kobe Harborland
Kobe Harborland is a big buying complicated positioned on the waterfront throughout from the port, dealing with Kobe Port Tower and Meriken Park Oriental Lodge. Harborland has turn into one in all Kobe’s high vacationer points of interest with over 200 shops, eating places, museums and leisure.
When you solely have one night time in Kobe, we suggest you go to Kobe Harborland and dine at one of many waterfront eating places at Mosaic. The Fisherman’s Market at Kobe Mosaic is kind of common. The Mosaic boardwalk is arguably the perfect place in Kobe to look at the sundown.
Kobe Harborland is dwelling to Anpanman Theme park and Kobe Anpanman Kids’s Museum, positioned behind the Mosaic Ferris Wheel. It additionally has video arcades and video games room, so that you’re youngsters could have a lot to maintain them entertained.
Whilst you’re within the neighbourhood, take a stroll down Kobe Gaslight Road and take a look at the Ninth-century crimson brick warehouses known as Renga Soko.
We ate dinner on the conveyor belt sushi restaurant at Kobe Harborland (additionally known as rotation sushi, sushi prepare and kaiten sushi).
It’s a enjoyable and straightforward solution to pattern a wide range of sushi. Not solely does the sushi come out rapidly, you may really see the gadgets as they cross your desk. That is preferrred for first timers who’re nervous about making an attempt sushi and uncooked fish for the primary time.
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6. Kobe Bay Cruise
Get a special perspective of this bustling port metropolis by taking a Kobe Bay Cruise. Cruises sail across the bay and final about 40 minutes.
The boat is docked at Meriken Park beside the crimson Port Tower. See photograph above. You should purchase tickets immediately on the dock. Boats depart each hour, so you have got choices.
An alternative choice is the Kobe Concerto cruise.
The ship is docked in entrance of Harbourland (see photograph beneath) and presents a eating expertise whereas cruising across the bay. You possibly can be a part of a lunch cruise that usually departs at 12:00 midday, tea cruise that departs at 2:30 PM, twilight cruise that departs at 5:15 PM and an evening cruise that departs at 7:30 PM.
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7. Rokko Cable Automotive
The Rokko Cable Automotive is a Japanese funicular that transports visitors to the highest of Mt. Rokko. The cable automotive opened in 1932 and is likely one of the high Kobe vacationer points of interest.
It takes 10 minutes to get from the Rokko Cable Shita station, positioned on the base of the mountain, to Rokko Sanjo station on the high of the mountain. The elevation acquire is roughly 500 metres.
It’s greatest to get the Rokkosan Vacationer cross for 1200 yen. This cross consists of bus fare to get to Rokko Cable Shita station, the cable automotive experience, and the bus to the Mount Rokko Tourism Space. Extra information right here.
Outdoors the Rokko Cable Automotive station. That is on the base of Mount Rokko.
8. Rokko Backyard Terrace
Rokko Backyard Terrace, pictured above, is the proper place to get panoramic views of town, ocean and mountains. It’s a vacationer complicated with viewing platforms, an commentary tower, a number of eating places and small retail outlets that promote souvenirs, ice cream, drinks and snacks.
Rokkosan Genghis Khan Palace
For a singular lunch, go to the Rokkosan Genghis Khan Palace. Grill recent meats, seafood and greens on a sizzling forged iron plate that sits in your eating desk. It’s a enjoyable eating expertise for everybody.
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Map of issues to do on Mount Rokko in Kobe Japan.
You possibly can simply spend a full day visiting the small vacationer points of interest on Mount Rokko. It has a botanical backyard, forest journey park with zipline and treetop impediment course, the music field museum, small golf course and the Rokko Backyard Terrace.
The beehive construction within the above photograph is the Rokko Shidare Observatory.
The greatest views of Kobe and Hyogo Prefecture are discovered on the high of Mount Rokko.
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9. Rokko-Arima Ropeway
The Rokko-Arima Ropeway is an aerial tramway that travels 2.8 kilometres (1.7 miles) from Rokko Sancho station to Arima Onsen. You possibly can stroll from the Rokko Vacationer Space to the Rokko Sancho station, so it’s a straightforward addition to your Kobe day journey.
The a method journey from Mount Rokko to Arima Onsen takes 12 minutes and prices 1030 yen ($13.00 CAD). Spherical journey tickets value 1850 yen ($23.00).
You may additionally need to go to the Maya Ropeway and Shin-Kōbe Ropeway throughout your go to to Kobe.
Rokko Sancho station on the high of the Rokko-Arima Ropeway.
Contained in the aerial tram descending from Mount Rokko to Arima Onsen.
Lush mountain landscapes from the Rokko-Arima ropeway.
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10. Arima Onsen
One of the common Kobe points of interest is Arima Onsen, Japan’s oldest and most well-known sizzling spring city. Wandering the slim streets of Arima Onsen presents a glimpse into Japan’s historical previous.
It’s mentioned that emperors and samurai would go to Arima Onsen to soak in its therapeutic sizzling springs.
Arima Onsen is accessible by taking the Rokko Cable Automotive and Rokko-Arima Ropeway, which makes for a enjoyable day journey from Kobe. Plan for a full day if you wish to embody time on Mount Rokko. Or keep in a single day at a conventional Japanese ryokan.
There are solely two public tub homes in Arima Onsen. Some ryokan inns will open their personal baths to guests through the day. Admission ranges between 500 and 2500 yen ($6.00 CAD to $30.00 CAD). See an inventory of sizzling spring baths in Arima Onsen right here.
When you’re travelling with youngsters, it’s essential to know that there are particular guidelines for bathing at Japanese onsen. We weren’t allowed to wash as a household on the public tub home at Arima Onsen (women and men can’t tub collectively, even with youngsters). Maintain this in thoughts and plan accordingly.
When you’re not eager to spend time at a shower home or ryokan, you may soak your ft at Taiko no Ashiyu (the free public foot tub in Arima Onsen). It’s positioned exterior Kin no Yu (Arima golden Scorching-spring public spa).
The water is stored at 42.3 diploma Celsius, so it’s sizzling! I don’t suppose any of us lasted longer than one minute.
The city of Arima Onsen has many small retail outlets, eating places and shrines.
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11. Nankin-machi – Kobe Chinatown
Greater than 100 eating places and outlets make up Kobe’s Chinatown, also referred to as Nankin-machi. It’s one in all Japan’s largest Chinatowns, though it solely covers a geographical space of roughly 200 meters by 100 meters.
The energetic streets of Nankinmachi see a relentless circulation of individuals, particularly within the night and at night time. It is a great spot to pattern a wide range of avenue meals in Kobe, together with steamed dumplings, pork buns, Peking duck wraps, noodle soups and deep fried croquettes.
Kobe Chinatown has a number of avenue meals distributors with small bites on the market.
Tasty steamed pork buns on the market in Chinatown.
Chinatown is a enjoyable place to expertise Kobe at night time.
The long-lasting gazebo in Nankinmachi Sq. in Kobe Chinatown.
Choanmon Gate welcomes guests to Kobe Chinatown.
Above is the ornate Seian-mon Gate in Nankin-machi.
12. Motomachi Procuring Road
One of many issues we love about Japan is its pedestrian solely buying streets. Motomachi Procuring Road is an historic buying district in central Kobe with lots of of retail outlets and eating places.
The favored avenue is positioned within the middle of Kobe close to a few of its high vacationer points of interest, resembling Nankinmachi (Kobe Chinatown), Kobe Metropolis Museum, Meriken Park and Harborland. It stretches between Motomachi Station and Kobe Station, so it’s simply accessible from wherever within the metropolis.
13. Ikuta Shrine
Probably the most well-known temple in Kobe is Ikuta Shrine, mentioned to be one of many oldest shrines in Japan. Ikuta Shrine is centrally positioned and straightforward to entry by foot from SannomiyaStation.
There are various temples, shrines and tori gates inside the grounds at Ikuta Shrine. Plan to spend at the least one hour exploring the this lovely shrine. The temple is free to enter.
Above is the primary entrance gate to Ikuta Shrine.
Row of vibrant orange torii gates inside Ikuta Shrine.
The temples and shrines in Japan are outstanding and value visiting, even in the event you’re not spiritual.
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Get your $45 credit score for Airbnb lodging right here.
14. Kobe Oji Zoo
The Kobe Oji Zoo is conveniently positioned a couple of prepare stations from central Kobe-Sannomiya Station. Admission to the zoo is just 600 yen for adults (approx $7.00 CAD) and children are free, making it a cheap household exercise in Kobe.
The zoo is dwelling to over 850 animals and birds from 150 completely different species, together with not often seen animals like the enormous panda, golden snub-nosed monkey, Amur tiger, polar bear and snow-leopard.
Find out about Oji Zoo and see an inventory of animals right here.
The large panda is the star attraction on the Kobe Oji Zoo.
An uncommon amusement park on the Kobe Zoo
The amusement park inside Kobe Zoo is fascinating, to say the least. We anticipate somewhat bizarre and wacky from Japan. It’s what makes Japan such an enchanting nation to go to, in our opinion.
As quickly as we entered the amusement park we had been immediately transported again in time. Whereas the zoo has a powerful line up of animals, the park services seem to have been left behind.
Watch this brief video from the Kobe Zoo amusement park.
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15. Rugby Match at Kobe Misaki Stadium
Even in the event you’re not a rugby fan, it’s enjoyable to look at a reside sporting occasion at Kobe Misaki Stadium, also referred to as Noevir Stadium Kobe. The stadium, which has a retractable roof and capability of 30,000 individuals, is dwelling to the Kobelco Steelers, a rugby union Prime League workforce. Examine the workforce schedule previous to your go to to see if the workforce is enjoying.
The stadium can be dwelling to Vissel Kobe, a Japanese skilled soccer membership within the J1 League, which is the highest tier of soccer within the nation. Kobe Misaki Stadium hosted matches on the 2002 FIFA World Cup.
The primary purpose we determined to journey to Japan in October was to attend the 2019 Rugby World Cup, the primary Rugby World Cup to be held in Asia.
Examine our expertise on the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan.
Inside Kobe Misaki Stadium on the Japan Rugby World Cup.
Different issues to do in Kobe
Throughout our first journey to Kobe, earlier than having youngsters, we visited these points of interest which might be additionally price visiting.
Nada Sake District – pattern sake at a wide range of Sake Breweries in Kobe. Extra information right here.
Shin-Kobe Ropeway – positioned beside the Shin-Kobe prepare station. When you’re taking a day journey from to Kobe to Osaka or Kyoto, you’ll probably arrive at this prepare station. We suggest you’re taking this cable as a substitute of the Rokko Cablecar, to maximise your time.
Nunobiki Waterfall – in the event you’d quite go for a hike within the mountains, skip the Pores and skin-Kobe Ropeway and hike to this 43 meter waterfall. The path additionally passes the Miharashi Observatory, which presents good views of town.
Kitano Ijinkan – additionally positioned close to the Kobe Shinkansen station, this historic district is dwelling to a lot of international residences and mansions, often known as Ijinkan. A few of them have transformed into public museums. Extra information right here.
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