After visiting Ise Jingu, enjoy Okage-yokocho walk

After visiting Ise Jingu, enjoy Okage-yokocho walk

After visiting Ise Jingu, enjoy taking a walk at "Mukashi-machi" (old townscape). Along the stone paving on the bank of Isuzu-gawa river starting from the Ujibashi bridge at the entrance to the Naiku (Toyo-uke Daijingu) of Ise Jingu, you will find the shrine town called "Oharai-machi" (Purifying town) replicating old streets with restaurants, souvenir shops, traditional sweets shops with a long history and traditional inns etc. At the center of "Oharai-machi", "Okage-yokocho" (Blessing alley) with around 60 shops is very polular among Japanese tourists and local residents and is lively like a festival every day. You will be fascinated by good old Japanese sweets and lovely Japanese fancy goods and find it difficult to choose. Business hours differ by shops and seasons, but nearly all shops are open from 11:00 till 17:00.

Ebimaru

Ebimaru

"Ebimaru" is where you can enjoy fishermen's cuisines with plenty of fresh seafoods from local sea. 

Ebimaru offers a variety of dishes including "Fisherman's soup" (bouillabaisse-type seafood miso soup) and "Seafood (sashimi) bowl". 

Also, based on your orders, they can cook live local fish from the fish-tank. 

Do not hesitate to try "Ebimaru" if you look for authentic good seafoods in Ise-Shima area. 

Sushi-kyu

Sushi-kyu

"Sushikyu" is a restaurant that represents Okage-yokocho for providing traditional local dishes, including "Tekone-zushi", known for golden vinegared rice, added with "Katsuo" (oceanic bonito) sauce made through dipping katsuo in sweet rich soy sauce. 

The view of clear stream Isuzu-gawa and its refreshing water adds value to good local cuisines. 

On the first day of each month, "Asagayu" (morning rice gruel) with seasonal ingredients will be served from 4:45 a.m..

Fukusuke

Fukusuke

"Ise Udon" (local noodles) is popular among visitors of Ise Jingu. 

This Udon is quite unique to this area and not found anywhere else in Japan, as the noodles are snowy white and thick as a string of beads, and are served with deep brown Tamari Shoyu (dark deep soy sauce). 

It could be enjoyed by anyone, from baby food eater to elderly people.

Akafuku main store

Akafuku main store

"Akafuku-mochi" is an anko (sweet bean paste)-coated rice cake, designed to replicate the clear stream of Isuzugawa river. 

Akafumochi is one of the most well known traditional Japanese sweets, and it might be difficult to find any Japanese who does not know Akafuku-mochi. 

The main shop of Akafuku-mochi, which has been keeping the traditional taste up to now, is located fairly close to the very entrance to Ise Jingu. 

While it is certainly good for souvenirs, it is highly recommended to enjoy Akafuku-mochi with Japanese tea at the shop with good old atomosphere. 

The popular items include, "Tsuitachi-mochi" available on the first day of each month and "Akafuku-kori" (shaved ice with anko) available during summer season. Opens at 5 am.

Okage-yokocho Mokuton

Okage-yokocho Mokuton

Tonkatsu (pork cutlet) speciality shop run by a pork farm opens at Okage-yokocho. 

The restaurant offers a variety of menus including popular "Butakaba-don" (bowl of roasted pork dipped in deep sweet sauce), "Hirekatsu-don" (pork fillet cutlet bowl) and "Okosama-zen" (Kids' plate). 

Also recommended when you get hungry after visiting Jingu. 

Yokocho-Kimiya

Yokocho-Kimiya

A restaurant where you can eat authentic nigiri sushi, using selected fish and shellfish throughout the country, mainly from the seas local to Okage-yokocho, namely Ise Bay and seas of Shima. 

Lunch time menu named "Nagi" is recommended for its good value, as it comes with 6 pieces of Nigiri sushi, sushi rolls, steamed egg custard and small bowls.

Yokocho-soba Shoseiko

Yokocho-soba Shoseiko

Ramen noodles shop in Okage-yokocho is most suitable when you are a bit hungry or inclined to try another resaurant after walking and eating. 

The shop takes pride in its soup made from the bones of premium branded Matuzaka (fairly close to Ise) beef through extracting over three days. 

The noodles bring out the best of selected wheat flour and are added with umami (savory taste) of special roasted pork fillet, which its taste has been tightened for over a week. 

While it is simple and refreshing, the aftertaste remains firmly and you will not forget the scent of soy sauce based soup.

Butasute

Butasute

"Butasute" restaurant, established in 1909, only serves the beef carefully bred from calfs at their affiliated farmers. 

As such beef's strings are cut deliverately by skilled cooks, no doubt you will find it delicious. 

Marbled beef served in its popular menu "Gyunabe Hinoki" is surprisingly tender and its sweet flavor fills your mouth.

Tofuya

Tofuya

"Tofuya" is known for its smooth palatable Tofu (soybean curd) and Anago (conger eel) dishes only made from domestic natural Anago. 

Top recommendation is monthly special menu named "Tofuya bento" with limited availability. 

The colorful dishes carefully made from local and seasonal ingredients make the nourishing Tofu even more tasty. 

The shop is quite suitable for tourists as it opens at night. 

You will easilly locate the country-style shop under the big ginkgo tree along the downstream of Isuzu-gawa river close to Ise Jingu.

Wakamatsuya

Wakamatsuya

A pleasant fragrance will bring you to the long-established Kamaboko (boiled fish paste) shop named "Wakamatsuya". 

The shop carefully maintains the traditional recipe making the most of seafoods from local seas and has been loved by many local people. 

At the shop front, freshly fried "Satsuma-age" (fried fish balls) and others are served.

Dango-ya

Dango-ya

"Dango-ya" is a dango (rice dumlings) speciality shop in Okage-yokocho. 

The shop offers a vriety of dango including classic Shoyu-dare (soy sauce syrup).

"Kuromitsu-dare" (brown sugar syrup), which has been popular in Ise Area for many years is well recommended. 

With the deep rich distinctive syrup, it gives you a great impact not only in terms of its taste but also appearance! 

You can enjoy eating them at the rest space, and are also suitable for walking and eating as well as for souvenirs.

Isuzugawa Café

Isuzugawa Café

When you are tired of walking around in Okage-yokocho, drop in at "Isuzugawa Café" located by the bank of clear stream of Isuzu-gawa river, close to Ise Jingu. 

You can enjoy the authentic coffee with specially selected beans and careful brewing. 

Also, sweets including cheese cake and cream puff, which are popular since the opening of the shop, are served.

Yokocho-yaki-no-mise

Yokocho-yaki-no-mise

"Yokocho-yaki" in the shape of luck charm "Ebisu Daikoku" (Gods of agriculture and fishery) is made of wheat flour dough with honey, filled with coarse sweet red bean paste made from domestic brand red beans. 

"Tasty lucky charm" is one of what can not be missed at Okage-yokocho. 

In addition, rich variety of soft-serve ice cream such as Matcha (powdered green tea), Yaki-imo (baked sweet potatoes) and other flavors are popular from children to adults.

Isuzu-chaya main store

Isuzu-chaya main store

"Isuzu-chaya" offers colourful Japanese and Western-style sweets. 

"Nijyu-yon Sekki Kashi" (seasonal Japanese sweets based on 24 divisions of solar year) is enjoyable just by looking at them. 

Sweets and Matcha will be served at Zashiki (tatami room) that replicates traditional merchant houses in Ise Area, as well as at a table in open ceiling space.  

"Okage-Inu" Sable, made on a motif of 18th or 19th centrury dogs that visited Ise Jingu on behalf their sick or disabled masters when Ise Pilgrimage was a trend, is popular and suitable for souvenirs.

Ise-Kadoya Beer, Naiku-mae-shop

Ise-Kadoya Beer, Naiku-mae-shop

The shop offers local beer named "Ise-Kadoya Beer" and local Oyster dishes. 

You will be excited with the rich selection of beers. 

Deep-fried oyster skewers with tartar sauce goes perfectly well with beer. 

You can enjoy beer and foods inside the restaurant or you can walk and eat.

Iseman Naiku-mae-shuzoujyo

Iseman Naiku-mae-shuzoujyo

The place is well known as the "only sake brewery in Ise area". 

Brewery is located at the back of the shop and sake produsing process can be observed. 

Sake is prepared with underground water of clear stream Isuzu-gawa River flowing close to Ise Jingu, and carefully selected sake rice is polished to 40%. 

Its refined and refreshing taste gains popularity mainly among female customers.

Ise-shoyu-honpo

Ise-shoyu-honpo

You will enjoy the good taste of Ise Shoyu (Ise soy sauce) and the smell of roasted soy sauce. 

For souvenirs, "Ise Shoyu Ginkou-shikomi" (flavored soy sause made from selected soy beans) is recommended. 

For take-out, "Ise-yaki Udon" (Japanese fried noodles) with the scent and rich taste of Ise Shoyu, and "Ise Shoyu soft-serve ice cream" with the tasty rich flavor of the added Ise Shoyu are very popular. 

Zeniya

Zeniya

The shop is full of old-fashioned confectionary nostargic to most Japanese, like colourful candies and "Karinto" (fried dough cakes) etc. 

You can find the shop by the signboard of Ichi-mon Sen (Coin of Edo Period). 

Flagship product is "Waraji Karinto", characterized with cripsy thin wheat flour dough and dark brown sugar flavor. 

Please give it a try.

Kicho-shoufuku-tei

Kicho-shoufuku-tei

With the theme "sharing the happiness", the shop developed as it accumulated and sold charms throughout Japan, and is now known as a specialty shop with 1,000 kinds of "Maneki-neko" (figure of a cat with one paw raised).  

In addition to Maneki-neko, the shop is full of cat goods and are irresistable for cat lovers. 

After being healed by Maneki-neko, make sure to try "Meneki-neko Omikuji" (fortune slip) to test your luck.

You certainly can enjoy the time filled with Maneki-neko.

Kumihimo Hirai

Kumihimo Hirai

"Iga Kumihimo" has been commonly known for long in Mie prefecture. 

It is a traditional craft inherited from ancient times, and its beautifully dyed colorful silk strings commingled one by one, create unique taste. 

Recently, Kumihimo appeared in smash hit movie "Your Name." and its popularity surged. 

Kumihimo specialty shop "Kumihimo Hirai" offers a number of Kumihimo products including straps for mobile phone, key-holders and earrings. 

By performing the Kumihimo demonstration in the shop, the effort to inherit traditional skills and techniques to the future generations is being continued.

Tourist attractions covered by this article