Castle in the Clouds

Matsumoto 3-Day Historic City Tour & Noodle Making

Prices from £258 pp

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Duration3 days / 2 nights (flexible)


Call us 01273 322398


Nestled amongst Japan’s beautiful Alpine mountains, you’ll find the cosmopolitan little city of Matsumoto – your tranquil base for the next couple of days. Flanked by imposing peaks to the east and west, Matsumoto is also home to a magnificent wooden castle at its heart, attractive Edo-period streets to stroll around at leisure, along with a vibrant and proud population. Spend a couple of days taking in the views, and learn how to make a regional speciality - soba noodles - from a local chef.

What's included

  • Accommodation – price based on 2 people sharing
  • Soba noodle making experience (you can also eat your noodles for lunch!)

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Location map

Your day-by-day itinerary

Arrival in Matsumoto

Today you’ll make the spectacular journey into the Japanese Alps, to Matsumoto, ready to check into your accommodation near the centre of town. It’s a fairly compact place so everything is easily accessible on foot, but you can also pop along to the Tourist Centre and enquire about the free bike rental if you prefer getting around on two wheels.

Arrival in Matsumoto

Soba Noodle Making, and Free Time to Explore

After a leisurely start to the day, mid-morning you’ll head to a local restaurant in the centre of town which dates back over 130 years. Here you’ll learn how to make one of the region’s most famous foods, soba noodles, from a local chef. After kneading and cutting them, they’ll be cooked up Shinshu-style for you to enjoy as a delicious lunch, and with a full belly you can set off to explore more of the city.

Soba noodles

The wonderful Matsumoto Castle should be first on everyone’s list, but the city does have plenty of other charms. The Nakamachi district is a maze of attractive Edo-period streets, home to a huge selection of cafes and galleries, and you could easily lose a few hours just strolling around. There are alpine views all around, so you might just find yourself a nice spot for lunch and end up staying far too long!

If you’re feeling a little more active (and it isn’t the middle of winter….), head to the Tourist Office for information about some great day-hikes in the area so you can explore the alps a little more closely.

Traveller taking a photo on her smart phone

Departure from Matsumoto

Having taken in all that mountain air you should have a great night’s sleep, and after breakfast at your hotel, you’ll be ready to move on to your next destination.

Out building of Japanese castle
David on a rickshaw

Speak to our Japan specialist, David

"I love the retro-futuristic vibes of Tokyo, not to mention the tasty donburi! Staying in a traditional ryokan and bathing in the natural hot springs (onsen) are particular highlights for me."

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