After exhausting Shizuoka’s offerings, we hit the road for the Ocha no Sato Tea Museum about 40 minutes away.
We paid a typical admission fee of 300 yen (about $2.80 USD) per person. I don’t know how Japanese museums manage, charging so little. The building looked brand new, and there was staff everywhere.
We wandered the exhibits, sampled some tea, strolled the Japanese garden, and of course visited the gift shop. Green tea ice cream is definitely A Thing in Japan, and the gift shop didn’t disappoint.
I expected the museum to overlook sprawling tea plantations, and it sort of did. We saw several adjacent tea fields, but the relatively flat elevation meant few stunning vistas. Apparently the surrounding hills offered such views, but we were content with what we saw on the road.
After leaving the tea museum we headed back to Shizuoka to grab some lunch and wait for the car. Somehow we found ourselves in a highly questionable neighborhood that featured lots of gentlemen’s clubs, bars, and a mind boggling number of karaoke joints. Everything was shuttered, opening late afternoon. Thanks to the magic of The Google we quickly found our way out of there and back to a respectable lunch place.
Here’s the new top! We’re on our way home now.
We hoped that the heavy cloud cover from this morning had lightened up enough to give a Mount Fuji sendoff on our drive home. And we got it!