Izu Kogen Retreat, Experience life in the Izu Peninsula

Written by sam. Posted in Hot Properties for Sale, Sightseeing

A rare Japanese hideaway in the picturesque Izu peninsula.

OshimaOutside of House c

This free standing house built on over 1000 square meters of land is a unique combination of Japanese and western architecture.

1st floor Washitsu Izu2nd Floor Washitsu fThe first floor is similar to a Japanese guest house with a large sitting area and Japanese rooms, presented similar to those that you might expect to find in a Japanese inn (Ryokan). The lower floor also has a small kitchenette, one could imagine that the original purpose of the house may have been designed as a private Bed and Breakfast. (for floor plans click here) The upper floor has a much more western layout, with a large living and dining area, sided by a generously sized kitchen, The second floor also mixes the Japanese and western influence with a spacious western style bedroom and a Japanese tatami room that resembles a traditional Japanese family room


Izu Kogen Sauna2nd Floor Onsen bOnsen

The house has 2 baths, both with Onsen and views into the landscaped garden, the bath on the lower floor is a traditional Japanese wooden bath with access to a natural hot spring (Onsen) and a sauna (a rare though welcomed addition to a Japanese house.

The Izu peninsula is a well known vacation retreat. Most Japanese and foreign residents know of the white sandy beaches of Shimoda and the hot springs of Hakone, however there is very little publicized in English of the greater Izu peninsula, which if circumnavigated in a car, motorcycle, or bicycle is 200km of spectacular coast line dotted with caves, beaches, rocky inlets and small islands. Central to Izu are large volcanic mountain ranges that rise to over 3000ft above sea level and provide the many small hot spring townships with unlimited supplies of hot water for traditional Japanese bathhouses and inns.

Directly in the center of east Izu is the Izu Kogen, (Izu Plateau), this area has been important for Japan historically for its fishing resources, though in modern times has become the destination of choice for and escape from city life. Latticed with small roads that access hidden coves and retreats along the coast line, it is also within 45 minutes drive of the beaches of Shimoda, the highlands of the Amagi Mountains, and the nearest access to the Shinkansen (bullet train) from Atami.

Aside from the larger towns of Atami and Shimoda, the majority of residents in Izu live in free standing houses, many people favor the higher ground for the views of the coastline and mountains.

Cherry blossoms:Cherry blossom Street/Sakuranamiki a 3 kilometer tunnel of blossoms uphill from Izu-Kogen station, end of March/early April.  Cherry blossom Matsuri(festival):a two-week craft fair.

Sakura no Sato: A park with 3,000 trees and 35 varieties of cherry blossoms at the bottom of Omuroyama, the town is also famous for its blossoms in Autumn . Sakura no Sato also has an autumn craft fair in October.

Omuroyama:extinct volcano. Take a ski lift to the top with panoramic views including Mt Fuji and walk around the crater’s edge.  A popular tourist event is the mountain burning in February when dead grasses on the whole of the volcano are burnt.

Izu-Kogen Iris Park:a rare type of iris park in the paddy fields with a collection of 350 varieties – some rare blooming in June.

Komuroyama:high up with good views and a stunning azalea park in May.

Kawana hotel: famous for its prestigious golf courses.  The hotel tea room and lobby – art-deco style offer sea views and of Oshima island.  At Christmas with a log fire and big tree music evenings are held.

Kawana stained glass museum:with tea-room and restaurant.

IppekikoLake Ippeki – it takes about 45 minutes to walk around the lake.   Red maple trees are beautiful in autumn.

Kawazu town:about 20 minutes drive away.  Famous nationally for the early Kawazuzakura and the local Matsuri in February. Also in Kawazu is Iris garden, Bagatelle rose park, and the Kawazu SevenWaterfalls.

Ito:a historic spa town/city holds in August the Anjin festival fireworks at sea a very popular event to celebrate the Englishman William Adams who built Japan’s first western style sailing ship in Ito

Shuzenji:a historic spa town about 45 minutes drive away. Nearby Niji no Sato:an extensive park featuring gardens from other countries with restaurants, shops and railway.

West Izu:Is a particularly unspoiled are of Japan with stunning sea views and coastline and and Orchid Sanctuary in Dogashima.

For more details on this building or the Izu Area, please contact Housing Japan

Mail: sales@housingjapan.com

Phone: 03-3588-8860


Marunouchi and the Imperial Palace

Written by Lloyd. Posted in Sightseeing

Sitting above Tokyo Station, Marunouchi is generally known as the financial district of Tokyo, with major banks and the Tokyo Stock Exchange situated in the area. However, the name Marunouchi literally means “inside the circle” and refers to the outer moat of the nearby Imperial Palace

Roppongi Hills

Written by Lloyd. Posted in Sightseeing

A City Within itself

Roppongi Hills will always be remembered as the first of Tokyo’s grand scale mixed-use developments of the new millenium. Its concept of “city within a city” made it the flagship for Mori Building’s cutting edge urban design and architecture.

Tokyo Midtown Project

Written by Lloyd. Posted in Sightseeing

The “mega development” of 2007 definitely goes to Tokyo Midtown Project – Mitsui Fudosan Corporation’s answer to Mori Building’s Roppongi Hills. Opened right in the middle of the bustling Roppongi district in 2007

The New Tokyo Station

Written by Lloyd. Posted in Sightseeing

In contrast to most train stations throughout modern Japan, Tokyo Station is somewhat of an anomaly, having evolved into far more than a transportation hub since its construction nearly a century ago.

Connecting the Tokyu Toyoko Line to the Tokyu Metro Fukutoshin Line

Written by fukui. Posted in In the Press, Tokyo Guide

Representatives of Railway Operator Tokyu announced that “Tokyu Toyoko-line” and “Tokyo Metro Fukutoshin-Line” are starting a direct link from 16th of March, 2013.


This underground construction project will improve the access between Yokohama and Shibuya.

Previously, many transfers were required to travel from Motomachi Chukagai to Shinrinkoen and from Motomachi Chukagai to Hannou. With the new train system, it will be easier access to go from Motomachi Chukagai to Shinrinkoen and from Motomachi Chukagai to Hannou  as seen in the image below. This will be more convenient for the commuters as it will reduce the commute time and cost.




Yokohama station Shinjuku 3 Chome station
Previous System 52min 420JPY
New Train System   32min 420JPY
Musashikosugi station Ikebukuro station
Previous System 35min 380JPY
New Train System   25min 380JPY
Jiyugaoka station Kawagoe  station
Previous System 72min 760JPY
New Train System   60min 720JPY
Jiyugaoka station Tokorozawa station
Previous System 68min 670JPY
New Train System   52min 670JPY

Preview of Haneda’s new International Terminal

Written by admin. Posted in Travel

A few days back I pointed out that Narita Airport is still pretty darn far away despite improvements like the Narita Sky Express. Of course Tokyo is lucky to have an alternative airport in Haneda, even if it doesn’t do International flights all that often.

Their new International Terminal is set to open in October and a few lucky visitors managed to get a sneak peek

Sky Tree – Japan’s Tallest Structure

Written by admin. Posted in Sightseeing

Wikipedia: A cross-section of Tokyo Sky Tree

Cross-section of Tokyo Sky Tree

Tokyo Sky Tree, set to be completed in 2011, has already claimed the title as Japan’s tallest building. This is no small architectural feat. From a layman’s point of view, one of the first things that comes to mind is the dangers of erecting such a tall structure in an location prone to so much seismic activity.

Preserving Kimono culture through blogging

Written by rick. Posted in Tokyo Guide


As the population of Japan sees itself faced with an aging crisis, many are starting to realize that old traditions are also in danger of being lost. I was pleased to see that one blogger has taken it upon herself to do something about it, by blogging in English and telling the world about kimono culture in Japan.

More than just another Tokyo time-lapse

Written by rick. Posted in Tokyo Guide, Travel

I have to admit that the amount of Tokyo time-lapse videos floating around on the internet on sites like Vimeo can be overwhelming at times. Most of these videos seem to follow a similar formula — shoot a video of Tokyo, speed it up, add a Radiohead soundtrack, and upload to Vimeo. Easy right?

But here’s one video that stands out among all the others. At least, it stands out to me.

Starting a business in Japan

Written by rick. Posted in Tokyo Guide, Uncategorized

There are a number of ways that you can attack the problem of starting your own business in Japan. A few resources online include:

But by far one of the most thorough explanations is one recently posted by Michael Werneburg, describing in great detail how he launched the online business that he currently operates. Here’s a short excerpt:

Learning Japanese through radio and iTunes

Written by rick. Posted in Sightseeing, Tokyo Guide, Travel

Listening to some tunes
Listening to some tunes

In the interests of getting your Japanese up to speed both before and after your arrival, studying up on your nihongo by listening to as much Japanese as you can is certainly a big help. Japanese TV is always a smart idea, but if you’re not in Japan yet you can always try radio. And to that end, we’re going to list out a few of our favorite online Japanese radio resources.

Shiba Park

Written by admin. Posted in Best Parks & Gardens

Shiba Park is best known for its proximity to Zoujyoji Temple and as one of Tokyo’s original westernized parks from the Meiji Restoration. During the Edo period, the park was one large block and home to

In search of wi-fi in Tokyo

Written by rick. Posted in Tokyo Guide

Travelers to Tokyo are often surprised by how hard it is to find open wi-fi spots in the city. And for newcomers here who move into a new place, this can be a huge pain as well because internet service providers in Japan can be slow to get your broadband installed

Hibiya Park

Written by admin. Posted in Best Parks & Gardens

Hibiya Park is definitely one of Tokyo’s best parks as it is a large block of landscaped greenery right in the center of Tokyo – across from the imperial gardens to the north and government district of Kasumigaseki to the south.

Summer Snow Sports at Yokohama SNOVA !

Written by joe. Posted in Sightseeing

Looking for a really cool thing to do with your summer weekend?  If you like skiing or boarding I highly recommend a trip to SNOVA, the indoor snow park in Yokohama.

Last weekend we took a couple of riders from Hakuba to test out the new range of “Liberty Skis” – free style skis from Colorado new to Japan this year.