Visit deep spiritual sites in Nara with a local guide!

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Explore Yamato, the birth place of Japan as a nation, guided by a licensed English-speaking guide who is knowledgeable about history and spirituality. Visit the oldest shrine and temples full of legends and tradition!

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  • Explore the oldest shrine in Yamato region, Omiwa Shrine.
  • Drink the holy spring water of Sai Shrine.
  • See the grand view of Yamato region with oldest tomb mound of the shaman queen, Himiko.
  • Visit Hase temple, located deep in the mountains where you'll see plenty of seasonal beauty.
  • The guide, Ruri is a government certified English speaking guide, and can tell you unique stories about Japan's history and spiritualism.

overview icon Description

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JR Nara station
(Pick up will be available only for hotels in Nara City)

Important Information

●As we will be walking around the temples and shrines please join the tour with comfortable shoes and clothing.

●The temples and shrines we visit during the Half-day (5hours) and One-day (8hours) courses are visited by a few foreign tourists. There will be Japanese tourists in Omiwa Shrine and Hasedera Temple, however, many dedicate believers from all over Japan also visit these sacred sites. Therefore, please be careful not to talk too loudly and avoid taking photos in certain areas or occasions.

●For your information, although I talk about “spirituality”, I don’t belong to any specific religious group or sect. I respect all gods or goddesses as high spiritual beings who brought and spread teachings to humanity on earth at various times and places. For me, we are all children of God (the creator, something great, the Great spirit), sharing mother earth for certain life times, therefore we are equally precious spiritual beings. I have no intention to argue over religious teachings.

●I welcome anyone who visits Nara to get in touch with the heart of Japan, Yamato, but if you are interesred in any of the terms and concepts listed below then I think you will especially enjoy my type of guiding and stories:
――Shinto, Yamato, Himiko (legendary shaman queen), spirituality, power sports, self searching, or those who believe they were Japanese in their past lives.

●I also welcome international residents living in Japan, looking for deeper insights about Japan and Japanese.

What you need to bring

A pet bottle (you can get holy spring water to take back with you at Sai Shrine)

Meet your host :
  • 日本語 (Fluent)
  • English (Fluent)

Hello, I'm Aki! I grew up and live in Nara.

Many foreign tourists in Nara usually only visit the major tourist attractions such as Nara Park and Todaiji Temple, but believe me, Nara as the birth place of Japan has a lot more to offer. If you have a strong interest in Japan’s history, traditions, and culture, and if you are rather disappointed by the modernization of Japan, then Yamato is waiting for you to be discovered!

In the Yamato region, a little south of Nara City, there are still many ancient shrines and temples that date back to the age of mythology. Here you can feel the Kami (Shinto gods) in the air. Before Buddhism was introduced to Japan, people used to respect unseen sacred spirits everywhere, including in mountains, trees, rocks, water, animals, humans, and the Sun. The 2 Chinese characters of Yamato (“大和” ) represent “Great (大) Harmony (和)" and this is the key to Japanese spirituality.

Why don’t you join a private tour to many of my favorite places, sacred sites, and power spots of Yamato where few foreign tourists go, and hear unique stories about history, culture, spirituality, and more! If you're looking for something spiritual (for example, Shinto, “yamato," history, new age, self-searching), or if you have a special close connection with Japan, then I will be the perfect guide for you. Please feel free to contact me!
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Reviews (2)

  • Hadi Hadi


    This experience is a very good and relaxing one. Away from the crowd, you will get a very close look at Japanese history and culture through the visit. The local guide is also very nice and understanding!

  • Rachel Rachel

    Insightful and Informative!

    This tour is perfect for anyone that has an interest in Japanese traditions and culture, as Akiko is very knowledgeable about both. She provides a unique and interesting perspective, having grown up in the Nara prefecture, but also studying abroad. It was great to have a local take us to some off-the-beaten-path temples, and explain some lesser-known facts about Japanese culture.

    She definitely went above and beyond to make us feel comfortable, and was able to answer all of our various questions! Akiko is very personable, and always has a new fact to tell you. We thoroughly enjoyed our time with her!