We meet at JR Okayama station by 7:00am and take bus to a local Buddhist temple, Sougen-ji. There you can practice Zazen : sitting meditation for about one hour.
After Zazen practice, you can take a walk in the traditional landscape garden of the temple.
★In case you are interested in Sougen-ji temple but do not need Zazen practice, private guiding is available on weekdays. Please contact me.
Check out what we are going to do.
Feel free to personalize this offer.
JR Okayama station(East side, in front of Momotarou statue)
Practice of Zazan : sitting meditation at Sougen-ji temple
Well-maintained landscape garden
JR Okayama station
Zazen is the major spiritual discipline for Zen monks.
It is also helpful to common people for improving mental stability.
You can get a glimpse of Japanese Zen Buddhist tradition there.
guide fee, your transportation fee, garden entrance fee
food and drink
Comfortable stretchy clothing to sit on the floor without moving for one hour.
Keep silence and follow the directions given during Zazen.
Please have respect and keep good manner when you visit Buddhist temples.
My husband and I spent one day with Mayumi on a tour of Naoshima, Japan's Art Island. She met us at our Okayama hotel and accompanied us by train and ferry to the island and back to the hotel. The night before, Mayumi left much information in English about the island at the hotel (along with a gift of fruit) so we knew exactly what to expect there. This was much appreciated and quite helpful. As my husband has mobility problems, Mayumi arranged for a taxi to meet us on Naoshima at the ferry and to drive us to various outside art installations for an hour. We never would have been able to see most of these works without her welcomed suggestion in advance to use the taxi service for a while to get as much as possible from our limited stay on the island. Mayumi came with her personally prepared book, filled with notes and photos of the island attractions. These details, which she shared, enabled us to have an even better understanding of what we saw. But Mayumi did not have to refer to the book often, because she was quite knowledgeable about the island and its amazing art collection. She proved to be delightful to travel with -- fluent in English; was always considerate of my husband and his walking issues; had a nice sense of humor; and was ready to answer any questions that we had. In fact, before the trip, she emailed me, inviting us to ask the questions that we had at that time and to inquire whether there was anything special we wanted to do on the island. We felt that she tailored the tour to our interests. After the tour, she emailed me some lovely photos that she had taken of us. Mayumi ensured that we had a very special day. I am confident that she would also put the same effort into tours of other areas.
Dear Joan, Thank you very much for your warmest review. I am so happy to hear from you and to know that you took safe journey home. Thank you for finding and visiting Naoshima. I was profoundly touched by your life-energizing travel ! You see what needs to be seen all around the planet. I was encouraged so much that I will be able to take a step with joy to "the unknown". I am back from my vacation today. I went home to celebrate the New Year with my mother and my sisiter’s family. We visited our local shrine to show our appreciation and to make wishes for New Year. I wish you Happy New Year. I hope the New Year be A messenger of joy, smiles, love and peace. That brings you all that you ever wished for ! with the kindest regards, Mayumi
Mayumi was very communicative and she did a great job with the tour, thank you very much!
Hi Zachary. I am very happy to hear from you. Our tour in Naoshima was really exciting and wonderful ! Let me say thank you again.
My wife and I spent a marvelous day with Mayumi in both of these locations. Her English is excellent and her knowledge of local customs, culture and history superb. Most importantly, she is a delightful, energetic and a lovely person that was a pleasure to spend the day with. I highly recommend her tour!
It was me who had a lot of fun. Thank you very much for visiting Kurashiki & Okayama all the way from US and spending a day with me. I was glad to introduce you to the city I live. You are so intelligent, friendly, cheerful, and interested in various things here with open mind. And moreover, I loved watching you bend your knees to every single dog we met. I was really happy to be with you, such a wonderful couple. Please remember Ohara in your mind. Your collection of paintings seems to me being comparable to Ohara Museum of Art. Both of you looked nice in Kimono wear and had a good sense of humor that you can be appeared in a Samurai Movie. You left on me an unforgettable lovely impression. Enjoy the rest of days in Japan!
This visit was a nice contrast to the busy streets of Tokyo and Kyoto. I'm so glad that I made the decision to stop here as well. The Setouchi Islands are listed as one of the 52 places to go in 2019 by the New York Times. Mayumi had a number of different itineraries to choose from. Biking around the island of Honjima is what I ultimately selected. She planned everything perfectly from catching the ferry to the island, renting bikes and finding a spot for lunch. She even had a nice itinerary and map of the islands waiting for me when I got to the hotel. I saw lots of different birds and amazing scenery on my visit. She knew that I was interested in the Great Seto Bridge - the world's longest two-tiered bridge system - and worked out a train ride on the bridge at the end of the tour. Okayama is really a neat place to visit and I got chance after our tour was over to explore a bit. Lots of great restaurants and things to do. Highly recommend this tour.
Thank you for writing a very nice review ! You came at a great time, and fortunately the weather was perfect. I am really glad you enjoyed your trip to Okayama and Setouchi islands and the Great Seto Bridge. I feel happy to know that you went back home safely with a lot of memories. As I told you, SETOUCHI TRIENNALE 2019, International Art Festival will be held in these islands soon. If you miss these small islands and friendly birds, please come again. See you again sometime! With a lot of gratitude, Mayumi