【Tour information】A trip to the hometown of tatara iron manufacturing and Japanese swords【訪日旅行者向けツアー情報】

Japanese swords are made from a special type of iron called “tamahagane.” This special iron, Tamahagane, is made at Nittoho Tatara in Okuizumo-cho, Shimane Prefecture.

Tatara ironmaking is an ancient Japanese ironmaking method that involves burning iron sand and charcoalin a clay furnace.

In Okuizumo,  tatara iron has been made for over 1,300 years, and at its peak, it produced most of Japan’s iron. It supported people’s lives and played a major role in the development of Japanese industry and culture.

Tatara iron manufacturing was also an industry with the modern philosophy of “a sustainable industry in which people and nature coexist,‘’ such as recycling mountain forest resources and agricultural production using the remains of iron sand mining sites.

Okuizumo has various cultural heritages and historical sites related to tatara iron manufacturing.

At the same time, The traditional techniques for production of‘’Tamahagane‘’, which is indispensable

for the production of Japanese swords, have been passed down to present day.                  



Schedule: January 31,2024(Wed) to February 3,2024(Sat)
Price: ¥300,000 (Excluding Tax of 10%)
Included in the price:  Transportation, Accommodation, Meal (breakfast x 3, lunch x 4,
             Dinner x 3), Entrance fees, Sightseeing expenses, etc.
             Please note that we will not refund any part of the above fees if you
             do not use them due to your convenience.

Place of meeting and dissolution: Izumo Airport

Transportation during the tour: Chartered taxi

Participation Capacity:5  Minimum number of participants:4  Target age:18 years or older
Reservation: 国際医橋 株式会社    TEL: 0853-25-7201 FAX: 0853-53-6020

        Matsue-Works    TEL/FAX 0852-67-6244
Reservation deadline: January 20,2024
Cancellation Fee:  7days before departure 20%
            3days before departure 50%
         On the day of departure 100%

国際医橋 株式会社 島根営業所
旅行業務取扱主任者 福島 彰男
旅行業務取扱主任者 小見波 泰秀


Kanayako Shrine

Built in 1896, the magnificent 9m tall granite torii gate is
is said to be the biggest in Japan,made of stone.
It attracts the faith of various people involved in iron, including tatara craftsmen who stubbornly protect ancient traditions, and even today many people involved in iron manufacturing and metallurgy visit the shrine. The deities enshrined are Kanayamahiko no Mikoto and Kanayama Hime no Mikoto.

Ohara Shinden

Ohara Shinden is a terraced rice field created by carving out a large scale from the mountainside that extends from the river to the backbone mountains.
At the end of the Edo period, the Itohara family began developing the site of Ohara Tatara into rice terraces, forming Ohara Shinden.
The beautiful rice terraces have been selected as one of Japan’s top 100 rice terraces.

Residence of Itohara Family

The Itohara family, which has a history of about 400 years,
served as one of the nine iron masters in the Matsue domain
during the feudal period, and also served as the head iron master.
The quaint, white-walled storehouse-style memorial hall displays arts and crafts passed down by the Itohara family, as well as tatara iron manufacturing materials.

The adjacent residence of the Itohara family is a registered tangible cultural property of the country, with a floor space of 1,150㎡ and with 40 rooms.
The Izumo style garden, which features a strolling pond with seasonal colors, is a former site of iron sand mining, and construction began around the end of the Edo period, and it was completed about 50 years later in the middle of the Meiji period.
In 2019, this garden was designated as a national registered monument.

Daimyo cuisine of the Itohara family

Another highlight of this tour.
The menu of feudal lord cuisine that was served when the lord of the Matsue clan stayed in the Itohara family, has been passed down.
You will enjoy this menu recreated under the supervision of
Mr. Hideaki Tachibana, who won the 9th Bronze Award at

”Cooking Masters” in 2018.
Look forward to seeing what kind of dishes you can taste.

Nittouho Tatara

One of the highlights of this tour. Usually not open to the public.
We will take a special tour of the tatara place.

”Nittouho Tatara ”, which manufactures tamahagane ,
the material for Japanese swords, using traditional
techniques handed down since ancient times, is located
in Shimane Prefecture.

It is operated by the Japanese Art Sword Preservation Association,a public interest incorporated foundation, to manufacture Tamahagane, pass on the traditional techniques to create it, and train engineers.

The tatara blowing operation is carried out every year from mid-January to early February, when the humidity is low, for three generations (one operation for three days and nights is called a generation).

Through tireless operations, approximately 2.5 tons of halberds are manufactured per generation, and the selected tamahagane is provided to approximately 200 swordsmiths across the country.

Sugaya Tatara Sannai

Sannai refers to the facility where tatara iron was manufactured.
It is a village where the living quarters of working people were arranged in an integrated manner.
Sugaya Tatara Sannai , located in Yoshida cho , Unnan City, retains many of the characteristics of this village structure, and was designated as a national important tangible folk cultural property in 1967.