Many towns in rural Japan struggle with attracting more tourists, but have found it difficult to make it happen. Kimino, a small town in Wakayama states it has a total of zero international tourists annually and has made a stellar effort to change this with their cheerful and fun promotional video showcasing the town’s highlights, using “zero” as their central theme.
Located only an hour from Kansai International Airport, and also only an hour away from much more famous Koya-san, Kimino is a little bit out of the way, yet boasts excellent traditional craftsmanship skills sought from all over the country, stunning natural scenery, and farm-fresh vegetarian cooking. There’s much more than that, so we picked up a couple of highlights from the video that took our fancy:
Kiminoka is a gelateria and cafe owned by a farmer who grows vegetables and fruit nearby, which are used to make fresh gelato. Knowing which items are ripe and ready for picking is a clear advantage for a fresh and delicious product, and because of that, flavors change along with the seasons — so you always get the best taste for that time of year.
Quaint Ueminami, a traditional Japanese inn, is so exclusive it can only host one group per night. It has no TV nor any vending machines, so it’s perfect for those looking to truly relax and be away from the city. The inn, for an extra fee, also offers guests a chance to experience country life customs people in cities don’t get a chance to try, like having bonfires, going vegetable or tea leaf picking, making soba and more!
We could go on and on about Kimino’s charms, but why not see for yourself by watching the video? …Or better yet, drop by the town for a visit!
Will you be their first international visitor?