Japan 2015 – Nagomi Visit

by Diane on 27/02/2016

The Nagomi visit was definitely the second absolute highlight of this trip, right on par with seeing Stefan.

If you’ve been following our travels over the last years, you’ll have seen that we’re always keen to catch up with locals. There’s no better way to experience a country than hanging out with those who live there. A great way to meet locals in Japan is Nagomi Visit.

The concept is simple: Nagomi visits brings people together over food. You register on the website, say what day you’ll be in Japan and which train station will be closest to you, talk a bit about yourself, and then sit back and relax. 3 days later you’ll receive a list of potential candidates, who are keen to invite you to their home for dinner.

We received 8 invitations for dinner, and it was really, really hard to choose! Every single person/couple/family sounded amazing and I would have loved to meet them all. But we had to pick one, so we chose Midori and Shinichi.

The experience started with a friendly email exchange, in which the two introduced themselves and sent us perfect instructions to get to their train station (including photos). On the day of our visit we followed these instructions and got picked up from the station by Shinichi. During the short walk to their place it already felt like we were catching up with friends we had known for a long time. When we arrived at the apartment Midori was already waiting for us with the most amazing food you can think of. There were steamed veggies, awesome pickles, tofu steak and lots more – way too much to list it all here.

But not only the food was excellent, the company was great too. We had lots to talk about, shared details of our life in New Zealand and learnt heaps more about Japan. After dinner we even got shown how to make ink from a block of coal (I think it was coal?) and learnt more about Japanese writing. Shinichi even wrote down our dietary requirements in Japanese so we could show it at cafes and restaurants, which made the hunt for food in the following days much easier.

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We absolutely loved our visit and have found new friends in Midori and Shinichi for sure. We’ll definitely catch up with them again next time we’re in Tokyo – and who knows, maybe they’ll come to New Zealand one day too?

If you’re going to Japan at some point this year, feel free to use my Nagomi visit discount code: MA1602. This will give you a 5% discount on your visit (the fee is to cover to costs of food for the host, but I’m pretty sure that our hosts spent much more money on us than what we’ve paid). It’s definitely worth it!

 

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