Ine is one of the most unique towns in Japan and it’s located on the Tango peninsula of Kyoto. Originally a small fishing village that has expanded over the course of Japan’s history to a become one of the largest suppliers of fish in Kyoto, catching approximately 25% of the fish for the prefecture. Most of the town made up of 230 houses is located at sea level surrounded by large hills and rice terraces, making for a very interesting view of Kyoto.
Boating around the area for fishing and travel is a common practice for the locals, many of the houses even have a boat garage! Ine tries to maintain a traditional lifestyle that relies on the sea to provide for the town. As you pass through the city you can see the fishing traps and cages in the water for the local fisherman to reel in later.As a matter of fact you are also able to join the locals in a fishing experience for 3,000 yen.
They provide you with all of the materials you’ll need, a rod, bait and some guidance. If you are an experienced fisher, feel free to give this a shot as well. You are able to keep any fish you catch and they provide you with some ice packs to store it safely.
The houses in Ine are called Funaya, a traditional style of house that is located near the sea so that they can maintain as much space as possible for the amount of land that is used. Ine has around 230 traditional Funaya houses. The town is surrounded by mountains and hills which allows for a pretty fantastic view of the area from above. The land around the city is considered unspoiled by modern life and natural.
Relax at the Roadside Station “Funaya no Sato Koen”
Near the town is a road side station for travelers and people who commute to the town for industry, family and every day life. The station overlooks the city from above with a small park with large fish statue, a few benches and a surrounding flower garden.
Tour Ine Bay by Boat
Ine Bay is a great place for tourism, here you can take the Ine bay tour which is a sightseeing boat tour around the town and the surrounding bay area. You are also welcome to take the guided tour of the town which explains its history as well as teaches you about the construction of Funaya houses. You will also learn about a tradition fishing method called Mondori from the local guides. There are also English guides available for foreigners if you need help getting around.
Stay Overnight at Funaya, Maruichi
One of the best places to stay Ine is the nearby accommodations in the hotel is called Maruichi. The great thing about Maruichi is that it’s an actual Funaya style building. There are a few different restaurants nearby that specialize in the local seafood. The only thing you should look out for is making sure to reserve a room here as early as possible as it is quite often booked for long periods of times. The building offers all of your typical amenities without breaking away from the tradition feel of the surrounding area.
If you are in the area you should check out the famous rice paddy terraces nearby. The paddy farmers don’t use any machinery here to harvest the rice. The area looks amazing and are great for panorama shots from above the sea of Japan. It is said to be an amazing place to view early morning sunrise!
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Ine no Funaya
Address: Hirata, Inecho, Yosa District, Kyoto Prefecture
Access: 1 hour by local bus from Amanohashidate Station
Website: Ine no Funaya