Vegetarian's Japan Guide

Your Ultimate Guide to the Naka-Karuizawa Area

Just a station away from Karuizawa Station, Naka-Karuizawa has been gaining tourists’ attention! The area has abundant nature along the Yu River (湯川). But that doesn’t mean that heading into the wild is the only thing you can do there. In fact, it is the opposite! Starting with HARUNIRE Terrace, a modern commercial complex for you to shop and dine in, churches and art museums, and hot spring facilities all blend in really well with the surrounding greenery!

A List of Attractions in Naka-Karuizawa

☛ Karuizawa’s fall foliage season is from early October to early November.
☛ Visit TSURUYA Karuizawa (ツルヤ 軽井沢店), a large local supermarket where you can find local specialties. It is just a 15-minute walk from Naka-Karuizawa Station.
☛ Refer to our article on The Recommended Cafes and Restaurants in Karuizawa for places to dine when you are in Karuizawa!

Explore Karuizawa With a Guided Tour

If you prefer a guide to introduce you to the charms of Karuizawa, how about joining one of the below tours?

You can also book to participate in one of the workshops/activities below!

How to Get to Naka-Karuizawa

There are two ways to get to Naka-Karuizawa from Karuizawa: by train or bus. If the places you want to visit are close to Naka-Karuizawa Station, taking a train is highly recommended.

  • Naka-Karuizawa Station is a train station on the Shinano Railway next to Karuizawa Station.
  • You can also take the Town Loop Bus (町内循環パス) and get off at the bus stop close to the attraction you want to visit.
    • Note that the Town Loop Bus has more than one route. While all in Japanese, the bus timetable can be found on Karuizawa Town’s website HERE.
    • You can refer to the spot’s access information below for the route that you should take.

The Vegan/Vegetarian-Friendly Restaurants in Naka-Karuizawa

Click the photo for information about Naka-Karuizawa’s vegan/vegetarian-friendly restaurants!

Compared to the neighborhood around Karuizawa Station, the Naka-Karuizawa area is less commercialized, so you might be worried about not being able to find vegetarian/vegan food there. Surprisingly, there are a couple of good options in Naka-Karuizawa. Although getting to them requires a degree of effort as they aren’t located close to the train station, the food served in each restaurant is amazing!

For more information, refer to our article on Naka-Karuizawa’s Vegan/Vegetarian-Friendly Restaurants!

Kagimotoya (かぎもとや)

If it is lunchtime when you get to Naka-Karuizawa and you don’t mind the non-vegetarian broth and sauce, Kagimotoya is a soba restaurant you must visit. The restaurant, which opened in 1870, makes chewy soba noodles with a strong fragrance of buckwheat. Because the restaurant opens at 9:30 am, some visit Kagimotoya for its breakfast!

Although there is nothing fancy about Kagimotoya, it is one of the top soba restaurants ranked by the locals. The noodles rival the fancy Kawakami-an, which has a restaurant at HARUNIRE Terrace and Old Karuizawa Ginza Street. While the noodles aren’t cut to equal sizes, they surprisingly still taste good, especially with their chewy texture!

The best thing is the dishes there are fairly priced despite the restaurant’s popularity and quality!

Besides the menu on the wall, autographs and photos of celebrities are also hung. So while you wait for the noodles, examining them one by one can be fun. And if you arrive at the restaurant at the right time, you can also see how the noodles are made. It is when you will soon realize why the noodles served are not of the same size – a cutting guided board isn’t used!

In addition, when you pay the bill at the register, Kagimotoya will most likely gift you a bag of fried soba noodles as a souvenir!

Fun fact: Kagimotoya’s name came from the fact that in the Edo period, a copy of the key to the headquarters of the governor’s office was kept with the soba restaurant, which was an inn for merchants at the time!

Important: Note that while Kenchin-jiru (けんちん汁) is a must-order at Kagimotoya, it is not vegetarian.

☛ Refer to HERE for Kagimotoya’s menu. They also have an English menu if you require one at the restaurant.
☛ You can order the set menu and ask Kagimotoya to exclude or replace the prawn tempura with vegetable ones by using the phrases in our Essential Japanese Travel Phrases for Vegetarians and Vegans.

Kagimotoya’s Business Hours and Access Information

  • Kagimotoya is open from:
    • 9:30 am to 2:45 pm and 5 pm to 7 pm on weekdays
    • 9:30 am to 2:45 pm and 5 pm to 7:45 pm on weekends and public holidays
    • The restaurant is closed on Thursdays.
  • Kagimotoya is around a 5-minute walk from Shinano Railway’s Naka-Karuizawa Station.

Tamuraya Sōhonten (田村屋総本店)

Tamuraya Sōhonten is a Japanese sweets shop that has been in business for over 100 years. The sweets maker’s signatory confectionery is Karuizawa (かるいざわ), a sweet where castella cake wraps the black bean paste that has cheese in the middle. The confectionery is so unique that it was rewarded the Honorary Gold Award at the National Confectionery Expo!

The walnut monaka (くるみ最中) is another popular confectionery. The exterior waffle is in the shape of an uncracked walnut. Inside the “shell”, the white bean paste is mixed with the crushed walnuts. Because the sweet is bite-sized, it is quite easy to eat. But just note that it might be too sweet for those who prefer a less-sweetened diet.

Tamuraya Sōhonten’s Business Hours and Access Information

  • Tamuraya Sōhonten is open from 10 am to 6 pm.
  • The confectionery maker is around a 5-minute walk from Shinano Railway’s Naka-Karuizawa Station.

Haruta Karuizawa (ハルタ 軽井沢)

Haruta Karuizawa is a stylish bakery with a Scandinavian interior. Making its bread using wheat harvested in Japan, the baker has around 20 to 30 baked items on the shelf every day. You can see the bread being made through the glass wall behind the counter. It is just nice knowing who is making the bread you just purchased and being able to see the process of making it!

The most popular bread at Haruta Karizawa is Fruct (フルクト), a bread stuffed with plenty of dried fruits and walnuts. But no matter what you end up buying, just one bite and you will understand why Haruta Karuizawa was chosen to be one of the top 100 bakeries in Japan since 2017 on Tabelog (食べログ), a Japanese food guide website!

If you are here for breakfast, there is a small eat-in space. Coffee and tea can also be ordered if you dine in. Tableware is also on sale for those who would love to grab a couple to take home.

Haruta Karuizawa’s Business Hours and Access Information

  • Haruta Karuizawa is open from 10:30 am to 6 pm from Friday to Monday.
  • The bakery is around a 5-minute walk from Shinano Railway’s Naka-Karuizawa Station.

Tip: Be there early, as most of the bread will likely be sold out by noon.

BUTTER-SAND LAB Karuizawa (バターサンドラボ軽井沢)

If you love unique and fancy-looking sweets, visit BUTTER-SAND LAB Karuizawa. Unlike ordinary butter sandwiches, it has a long, narrow shape with fruit decorations sprinkled on the surface. The butter sandwich specialist uses butter containing mostly omega-3 and unsaturated fat. So not only do the sandwiches bring a lot of attention on social media due to their presentation and taste, they are relatively healthy snacks!

So what is Butter Sandwich? It is basically two butter shortbreads sandwiching a thick layer of flavored cream. BUTTER-SAND LAB Karuizawa’s Butter Sandwiches are all delicately handmade with local ingredients. The aim is to replicate the texture of a parfait. Its intricately designed appearance makes it as colorful and eye-catching as the dessert normally served in a glass.

Also, abandoning the stereotype of butter-related dishes/desserts, the butter sandwich there won’t make you feel stuffed after a couple of mouthfuls. This is achieved by mixing the butter with fresh cream, white chocolate, and air. So while the sandwich sounds or looks like you will be eating a block of butter, it is not! And because the sandwiches are to be kept in the fridge, they would be perfect for consuming on a hot summer day.

The butter shortbreads are made from Nagano‘s wheat and slowly baked at a low temperature. Even if you eat the cream and biscuit separately, it would still be nice. So the stocks will likely be sold out soon after the shop opens, albeit they aren’t cheap!

Note that the butter sandwiches need to be refrigerated and consumed within 8 days.

BUTTER-SAND LAB Karuizawa’s Business Hours and Access Information

  • BUTTER-SAND LAB Karuizawa is open from 10 am to 5 pm from Friday to Sunday and on public holidays.
  • The butter sandwich maker is around a 5-minute walk from Shinano Railway’s Naka-Karuizawa Station.

La Luce (ラ・ルーチェ)

If you are interested in dining at an Italian restaurant with a Japanese-style interior, visit La Luce. It is probably the only Italian restaurant in the world where you will sit on the floor while eating. But don’t worry, if you can’t or don’t want to sit on the floor, they also have a Western-style table set so that everyone can enjoy dining at La Luce!

The restaurant uses seasonal organic vegetables from local contracted farmers to prepare all the dishes. While its internal appearance might make you doubt the quality of the food, La Luce’s pizza and pasta are delicious!

Because the restaurant is run by a couple only and there is only one person in the kitchen, it might take a while for your meal to be ready if the place is full.

Tip: Remember to let the restaurant know about your dietary requirement. They can advise you on what dish you can eat and/or they can customize it.

La Luce’s Business Hours and Access Information

  • La Luce is open from:
    • 11:30 am to 2:15 pm
      • The last order is taken at 1:30 pm.
    • 5:30 pm to 9:30 pm
      • The last order is taken at 8 pm.
    • The restaurant is closed on Mondays.
  • La Luce is around a 10-minute walk from Shinano Railway’s Naka-Karuizawa Station.

Karuizawa MODESTO (軽井沢 MODESTO)

Another Italian restaurant you might want to consider dining at is Karuizawa MODESTO, one of the best Italian restaurants in Karuizawa. It is where you can enjoy the deliciousness of fresh vegetables and other local ingredients. The staff there are dedicated and very attentive too!

The chef of Karuizawa MODESTO skillfully uses the sauce and heat to bring out the maximum best taste of the ingredients. Plus the restaurant can accommodate special dietary requirements. They will let you know which dish you can order and which dish they can customize. So whether you plan on making a reservation or simply walking in, remember to tell them what you can’t or don’t want to eat!

Besides the A la carte and the main, the dish that was highly praised by its customers is the free bread (baguette, rye and walnut bread). Even without the freshly squeezed olive oil, it is still delicious! You can also ask for seconds if you want more bread!

Tip: It is best to make a reservation if you plan to visit it during the summer or the fall foliage season.

Important: Note that the restaurant doesn’t have staff who can speak good English.

Karuizawa MODESTO’s Business Hours and Access Information

  • Karuizawa MODESTO is open from:
    • 12 pm for lunch
      • The last order is taken at 1:30 pm.
    • 5:30 pm for dinner
      • The last order is taken at 8:30 pm.
  • The restaurant is closed on Wednesdays.
  • To make a reservation, email them at [email protected].
  • Karuizawa MODESTO is around a 10 to 15-minute walk from Shinano Railway’s Naka-Karuizawa Station.

Nagakura Cafe (長倉カフェ)

If you like Meissen porcelain, enjoy a peaceful afternoon tea time at Nagakura Cafe. Coffee and tea are served with gorgeous china, and the furniture is mostly antique, including Venetian chandeliers.

The cafe is also particular with the ingredients used for cake-making, with very minimal use of coloring agents and additives. But this doesn’t mean their homemade cake is less delicious. In fact, they still taste great because the raw ingredients used are top-classed!

As there is a stream flowing near the cafe’s terrace, a refreshing water sound and birds chirping can be heard while you enjoy your cup of coffee and freshly made cake!

But just note that the price of the cakes is not cheap.

Nagakura Cafe’s Business Hours and Access Information

Important: Nagakura Cafe is closed temperorly.

  • Nagakura Cafe is open from April to December from 12 pm to 6 pm or until the cakes are sold out on weekdays and public holidays.
  • The cafe may close without notice on weekdays.
  • Nagakura Cafe is around a 15-minute walk from Shinano Railway’s Naka-Karuizawa Station.

Karuizawa Hoshino Area

Ⓒ 星野リゾート

Karuizawa Hoshino Area is the main sightseeing area in Naka-Karuizawa. In addition to the stylish HARUNIRE Terrace, the area also has awe-inspiring architecture, hot spring facilities, and a wild bird sanctuary. In winter, you can even ice skate on a frozen pond in the forest!

So if that all sounds exciting, refer to our article on Karuizawa Hoshino Area for more information!

Karuizawa Sengataki Hot Spring (軽井沢千ケ滝温泉)

Besides Hoshino Onsen Tonbo-no-Yu, Karuizawa Sengataki Hot Spring is another onsen facility in Naka-Karuizawa that you might want to check out. Boasting spacious hot spring pools with beautiful scenery with a creek flowing nearby, bathing in its indoor and outdoor pools is just a luxurious experience. The birds flying between the trees might even present you with a mini concert!

Because Prince Hotel operates the hot spring facility, the admission fee is high albeit the limited amenities. But the internal is stylish and usually clean. If you utilize it at night on a clear day, you can even star-gaze at the same time!

Karuizawa Sengataki Hot Spring was a part of Karuizawa Skate Center Hotel until 2009. After the hotel and the skate center were closed due to aging reasons, only the hot spring facility continued to operate. So there is no restaurant attached to it.

Another thing to note is that in winter, the indoor pool’s onsen is circulated.

Karuizawa Sengataki Hot Spring’s Business Hours, Admission Fees, and Access Information

  • Karuizawa Sengataki Hot Spring is open from:
    • 12 pm to 9:30 pm on weekdays
    • 10:30 am to 10 pm on weekends and public holidays
  • The admission fee is:
    • 1,200 yen for adults
    • 700 yen for children from ages 3 to 12
    • On weekends and public holidays, the cost increases by 100 yen for adults and 50 yen for children.
    • Note that there are “Special Days” at Karuizawa Sengataki Onsen. The cost on these days is 350 yen more than the normal weekday cost (440 yen more for children).
      • Refer to HERE for the dates marked “Special Days, 特別日”.

Tip: Remember to show the staff THIS COUPON for 100 yen off. But note that it can’t be used on Special Days.

  • Towel rental costs 200 yen for a large towel and 100 yen for a small towel.
  • Karuizawa Sengataki Hot Spring is around a 5 to 10-minute drive from Shinano Railway’s Naka-Karuizawa Station.
  • You can also take a bus bound for Manza Onsen or Kusatsu Onsen and get off at Karuizawa Sengataki Onsen Iriguchi (軽井沢千ヶ滝温泉入口).
    • You can refer to Seibu Bus’s website HERE for the timetable.

Senga Falls (千ヶ滝)

While not as popular as Karuizawa Shiraito Falls, Senga Falls in the Naka-Karuizawa area is another gorgeous waterfall in the region that you may want to explore. The 1.5km promenade from the parking lot is named Seseragi no Michi (せせらぎの道), meaning a stream’s murmuring.

Senga Falls is about 20m tall, the biggest waterfall in Karuizawa. Decorated by rich vegetation, Senga Falls is stunning no matter when you visit it.

Following the promenade to the waterfall basin, you can adore Senga Falls. Near the waterfall basin, the falling water splits into many streams and layers over the rugged rocky surface, another charm of Senga Falls.

The path to the waterfall is relatively flat and easy to walk, making it a perfect spot for hiking!

Ⓒ 軽井沢町役場

In summer, the Water Playground (水遊び場), around a 10-minute walk from the trailhead, is perfect for your family to cool down in the mountain stream. From there, it is a 20-minute hike through the gentle hill consisting of earthen roads and staircases.

If you examine the stream flowing beside the promenade, you will find a spot in the river where rocks are colored brown. That is where natural hot springs gush out!

☛ There is a toilet facility close to the car park.
☛ In autumn, you can walk from Sezon Museum of Modern Art (セゾン現代美術館) to Senga Falls, which takes 90 minutes. The road is extra stunning with the fall foliage. You can also cycle through the same route to Senga Fall’s parking lot.

How to Get to Senga Falls

  • Driving is the easiest way to get to Senga Falls.
  • You can also take a bus bound for Manza Onsen or Kusatsu Onsen and get off at Shinobigaoka (忍ヶ丘). From the bus stop, it is around a 25 to 30-minute walk to Senga Falls’ car park.
    • You can refer to Seibu Bus’s website HERE for the timetable.

The Contemporary Art Museums in Naka-Karuizawa

While many are aware that Karuizawa is a summer resort close to Tokyo, what most may not know about Karuizawa is that it is also a great destination to admire contemporary artworks. Particularly in the Naka-Karuizawa area, art museums and uncommon architecture are tucked inside the picturesque nature. So when you explore Naka-Karuizawa, remember to visit the artistic spots in the area for a more memorable trip!

For more information, refer to our article on The Must-Visit Museums in Naka-Karuizawa!

Shiozawa Lake (塩沢湖)

Besides Kumoba Pond, another spot for a picturesque water view is Shiozawa Lake, south of Naka-Karuizawa Station (中軽井沢駅). Not only is the lake surrounded by majestic maple trees, several art facilities and cafés, including Karuizawa Taliesin, are scattered around the lakeshore. And unlike Kumoba Pond, where you can only walk on the promenade, small sightseeing boats can be rented to tour around Shiozawa Lake. You can even enjoy archery in the park!

Especially if you plan to travel with children, stop by Peynet Art Musem (ペイネ美術館). We are sure your children will enjoy the museum filled with Raymond Peynet’s warm and cute original paintings and lithographs.

Ⓒ 軽井沢町役場

If you are an architecture fan, you will find the museum building interesting. The dark-red house completed in 1933 was Peynet’s villa and art studio. While the lakeshore isn’t where the house used to be, nothing was added during the relocation, making it a precious heritage in Karuizawa that represents Japan’s building style in the early 20th century. It is amazing how the architect then tweaked the traditional Japanese architectural style to allow Western elements!

Tip: Shiozawa Lake’s autumn foliage season is from late October to mid-November. You can also adore cherry blossoms if you visit Karuizawa in April.

Karuizawa Taliesin (軽井沢タリアセン)

Taliesin means “a shining forehead” in Welsh. Karuizawa Taliesin is a comprehensive resort with art facilities, historical buildings, restaurants, cafes, and shops. Positioning next to Shiozawa Lake (塩沢湖), you can take a cultural tour while enjoying the beautiful lakeside scenery.

In the good old days, Shiozawa Lake used to be filled with paddy fields. So in winter, when the water is frozen, it was where the locals would ice skate. After the Shiozawa Playground (塩沢遊園) was completed in 1971, the spot became a place to enjoy some leisure time. Then shops, art museums, and gardens opened one after another, and in 1996, the spot was turned into Karuizawa Taliesin.

Karuizawa Taliesin’s fall foliage season usually peaks in mid-October. The vivid autumn leaves reflected on the surface of Shiozawa Lake are very beautiful, which is the main reason that many people visit Karuizawa Taliesin from early October to early November. In spring, the cherry blossoms bloom before the colorful roses take over in summer from late June to late September.

The Architecture in Karuizawa Taliesin

While Karuizawa Taliesin is a facility for both men and women of all ages, it is particularly popular among families as there are plenty of attractions on the premises, including boating, miniature golf, and go-karting (kids’ version). The Peynet Art Museum, filled with Raymond Peynet’s works, is another spot for everyone to enjoy. A large number of his original paintings and lithographs, as well as the painting materials used, are on display.

If you like to explore the locally built old buildings, visit Karuizawa Taliesin’s symbol by the lake, Suikyūsō (睡鳩荘). The Western-style house designed by W.M. Vories is considered to be the finest in the history of Karuizawa villa architecture. There are also splendid furnishings that may remind you of the salons in 18th-century France.

Another Western-style architecture you can visit is sitting right of the lake. The light green-colored house is the Former Karuizawa Post Office completed in 1911. At the moment, a part of the house is re-opened to the public as an Italian restaurant, Restaurant Sonnet (レストランソネット), whereas another part of the house was renovated into an art museum (深沢紅子 野の花美術館 [明治四十四年館]).

To spend some relaxing time in a Japanese-style house, enjoy some afternoon tea at Cafe Hitofusa no Budō (一房の葡萄). Especially in summer, the terrace where rattan table sets are placed is the best spot for a cup of coffee!

Karuizawa Taliesin’s Opening Hours, Admission Fees, and Access Information

  • Karuizawa Taliesin is open from 9 am to 5 pm.
    • In December and January, it opens from 10 am to 4 pm.
  • The admission fee is:
    • 800 yen for adults and 400 yen for elementary and junior high school students for the garden
    • 1,000 yen for adults and 500 yen for elementary and junior high school students for the museum
    • 1,600 yen for adults and 800 yen for elementary and junior high school students for both the garden and the museum
  • From Naka-Karuizawa Station, take the Town Loop Bus, East/South Line (町内循環パス 東・南廻り線) and get off at Shiozawa Lake (塩沢湖).

Forest of Muse (ムーゼの森)

Just a little bit south of Karuizawa Taliesin, the Forest of Muse is a stunning spot. Consisting of Karuizawa Picturebook Museum (軽井沢絵本の森美術館), Picturesque Garden (ピクチャレスク ガーデン), and Karuizawa Erz Toy Museum (エルツおもちゃ博物館・軽井沢), Forest of Muse will surely bring back some childhood memories. Under the concept “Exploration the Adult’s Intellectual Curiosity”, it is a good spot to stimulate our willingness to learn new things and see things differently. As for children, the visit will be a good art lesson.

Karuizawa Picturebook Museum is where you meet the original drawings and first editions of Western and Japanese picturebooks released in modern times. In particular, don’t miss out on the first edition of Peter Rabbit! While picturebooks are normally for children, the facility is more for adults unless your children love reading. That said, one of the 1,500 picture books in the Picturebook Library for your children will surely increase the bond between each other!

When you need some fresh air, head out to the Picturesque Garden. The garden is so amazingly maintained that it almost seems like one of the garden scenes in the picture book you just read is in front of you in real life, and it almost makes you wonder if you will run into Peter Rabbit!

Inside Karuizawa Erz Toy Museum, you will find many wooden craft toys from the Erz region in Germany on display. It is a spot where you can meet the toys that can’t be commonly found in our daily life! So if you travel with children, they shall have a lot of fun.

Forest of Muse’s Opening Hours, Admission Fees, and Access Information

  • Refer to the official website HERE for information regarding Forest of Muse’s opening hours and admission fees.
    • Please also read through the precautions at the bottom of the webpage before visiting.
  • To get to the Forest of Muse, you can take a bus from Karuizawa Station or Naka-Karuizawa Station and get off at Shiozawa Lake (塩沢湖) or Kazakoshi Park (風越公園).
    • Refer to HERE to search for the service’s timetable.
    • Refer to HERE for the information on where to board the bus.

Karuizawa Hotchi Ichiba Farmers’ Market (軽井沢発地市庭)

For those who love farmers’ market, Karuizawa Hotchi Ichiba should be on your list of places to visit! The market opened in 2016 to allow people to purchase fresh fruits and vegetables harvested from nearby fields. In addition to having local fresh produce and readily made side dishes, many items are good for souvenirs. You may also find some apples packed in a box, but they might be sweets instead of fresh fruits!

As there are also restaurants in the facility, it can be a great spot to stop by for a meal or a break. There is also a tofu shop (Shira Hotaru Kitchen, 白ほたるキッチン) selling organic soybean products. It is also where you can taste liquid tofu! Of course, it won’t just be plain tofu in a cup but flavored with various natural sweeteners such as strawberries. Also, the burgers served at Shira Hotaru Kitchen are vegan!

Karuizawa’s famous cheese maker, Atelier de Fromage, also has a branch at Karuizawa Hotchi Ichiba Farmers’ Market. You might even be able to join a soba noodles-making workshop at the handmade soba noodles restaurant!

☛ If you are after fresh produce, arrive around 9 am because it sells out fast, especially on weekends and public holidays.
☛ Around the streams near Hotchi Ichiba, you might be able to spot fireflies from mid-June to late July.

Karuizawa Hotchi Ichiba Farmers’ Market’s Business Hours and Access Information

  • Karuizawa Hotchi Ichiba Farmers’ Market is open from:
    • 9 am to 5 pm from April to December
    • 9 am to 4 pm from January to March
    • The market is closed on Wednesdays from November to March. You can refer to the facility’s calendar HERE. It won’t open on the days that are marked in red.
  • The farmer’s market is around a 5 to 10-minute drive from Shinano Railway’s Naka-Karuizawa Station.
  • From Karuizawa Taliesin, it is around a 20-minute walk.
  • You can also take the Town Loop Bus, East/South Line (町内循環パス 東・南廻り線) from JR Karuizawa Station’s north exit and get off at Karuizawa Hotchi Ichiba (軽井沢発地市庭).

KARUIZAWA IBURU (軽井沢いぶる 軽井沢本店)

While low-temperature smoked food isn’t unique to Japan, you will surely find a couple of unusual items on KARUIZAWA IBURU’s shelf. In addition to low-temperature smoked nuts and cheese more commonly found worldwide, seasonings and other ingredients more unique to Japan, such as soy sauce, can also be found here!

Because the ingredients and seasonings are slowly cold-smoked for more than 16 hours at KARUIZAWA IBURU, they don’t just have a nice smoky taste. Their flavors are enhanced through the process.

If you are curious about the taste of the low-temperature smoked items in front of you, let the friendly staff know. KARUIZAWA IBURU offers free tastings!

Also, ice creams with smoked toppings are sold here!

KARUIZAWA IBURU’s Business Hours and Access Information

  • KARUIZAWA IBURU Karuizawa Main Store is open from 10 am to 4 pm.
  • KARUIZAWA IBURU Naka-Karuizawa Store is open from 10 am to 6 pm from Wednesday to Monday.
  • Refer to HERE for the store’s business calendar. The stores won’t open on the days marked “定休日”.
  • KARUIZAWA IBURU Karuizawa Main Store is a 5-minute drive from Karuizawa Station.
  • KARUIZAWA IBURU Naka-Karuizawa Store is a 15-minute walk from Naka-Karuizawa Station.

Karuizawa Lake Garden (軽井沢レイクガーデン)

Another scenic spot in Karuizawa is Karuizawa Lake Garden. The spacious ground of around 33,000㎡ is divided into 8 areas. Each of them is skillfully designed so that while the plants grow freely with minimal human touches, the gardens still appear to be picturesque.

For more information, refer to our article on Karuizawa Lake Garden!

Karuizawa Garden Farm (軽井沢ガーデンファームいちご園)

For all fruit-picking lovers, visit Karuizawa Garden Farm for a wide variety of strawberries. It is a farm where you can enjoy strawberry picking throughout the year. Growing in Karuizawa’s cool weather, the strawberries growing in the garden are sweet and juicy. The farm is clean and well-maintained. With the friendly and helpful staff, we are sure you will have a great fruit-picking time at Karuizawa Garden Farm. And don’t forget to drop by the farm shop. It is where you will find rare products such as strawberry cream cheese!

There are a few options for you to choose from, with the amount of fruit allowed to be picked varies. Depending on the seasons, you can also opt for the “all-you-can-eat” course, where you can indulge in sweet and juicy fruits within the time limit.

Tip: It is best to reserve your spot as they limit the number of customers daily. Refer to HERE to reserve.

How to Get to Karuizawa Garden Farm

  • From Karuizawa Station, take Shinano Railway and get off at the next station, Naka-Karuizawa Station.
  • From Naka-Karuizawa Station, take Karuizawa Town Loop Bus and get off at Shimohocchi (下発地). The farm is then a 15-minute walk.
  • Refer to HERE to search for the bus’s timetable.

Discover the Best Bakeries and Interesting Spots on Old Karuizawa Gina Street

Click the photo for more recommended spots on Old Karuizawa Gina Street!

Obviously Naka-Karuizawa shouldn’t be the only spot to visit when you travel to Karuizawa. There are several attractions close to JR Karuizawa Station that are worth your time. For example, the 750-meter-long Old Karuizawa Gina Street is lined with trendy cafes, confectionary shops, tasty restaurants and a lot more!

So refer to our Guide to Old Karuizawa Gina Street for more ideas of where to stop by when you visit Karuizawa!

Discover Other Fascinating Attractions Karuizawa

As you might already know, Naka-Karuizawa is just a part of the wider Karuizawa town. So your visit to Japan’s best highland resort, Karuizawa, won’t be complete without exploring the area close to Karuizawa Station. The town has amazing natural spots, several Western-style villas, amazingly designed churches, and unique cafes and restaurants awaiting your visit.

So refer to our Guide to Karuizawa article for more attractions to include in your itinerary!

Click the photo for all the amazing attractions in Karuizawa!