Fuchu Town Walk (Rubgy Tour B)
Meeting Place 11:00@ in front of South ticket gate of Fuchu Sta. (Keio Line)
11:15-16:30 ★ Okunitama Shrine、★ Lunch、★ JRA Racing Museum、★ Suntory Musashino Brewery
Final location 16:30@ Budaigawara Sta.
★ Okunitama Shrine
Okunitama Shrine is an old shinto shrine that was built on May 5, 111, and one of the famous 5 shrines in Tokyo area. It is located in Fuchu City, west of Tokyo. It takes only 5 minutes from the Keio line’S Fuchu station. Its location is very convenient,
Once you pass through the great Torii gate rising up from the end of the zelkova trees, you can feel cleansed as you walk by the deep green trees of the old Musashino woods. Okunitama-okami (the great god of okunitama), enshrined in this shrine, is known as a guardian god of Musashi province, and is further famous as a god of happy marriages. Also, Okunitama shrine is a "soja", which enshrine all the important gods of the Musashi province. So once you worship at this shrine, you have worshipped at every other shrine in the province too.
There are many small shrines that enshrine different gods inside the property, and people worship at them one by one for their specific desires. One such shrine is Mizu jinja (the water shrine). After you worship at Mizu jinja, you may take a paper doll (for a 100yen donation) from the house next to it, and then purify it with a wooden wand. Next, write your name on the paper doll, rub it on the part of your body where you have a problem, and then blow on it. Then your problem will be transferred to the paper. Next, put the paper in the small river behind the Mizu jinja. If the paper disappears in the water, then it is believed that your impurity will also disappear.
The shrine had to be the center of Musashi province, so the "Kokufu", the government office, was also built here. At the “Remnants of Musashi Kokufu”, located east of the shrine, the old remains of the central pillars, roof tiles, and ancient bricks excavated in this area are on display. At the site, you can imagine the ancient time when the provincial governor ruled over the district. (A stamp stand is located here)
Sacred places at Okunitama shrine
Behind the main shrine, there is a big ginkgo tree which is 1000 years old. It is believed to be a sacred tree with strong powers. Other sacred spots at the shrine are the two zelkova trees beside the torii gate at the entrance of the main shrine, and the two stones next to Zuijin-mon, known as "Tsuru-ishi" and "Kame-ishi". Okunitama shrine is an ancient powerful site, beloved by locals for a long time.
We have lunch in Torimitukuni.
★ JRA Racing Museum
It is said that the Derby Stakes, Kentucky Derby, and Japan Derby are the three best derbies in the world. The prize money of the Japanese Derby is higher than that of England’s, and Tokyo Racecourse in Fuchu city, where the Japan Derby is held, is well known as the largest racecourse in Japan, accommodating more than two hundred thousand guests. With its beautiful green lawn, people, regardless of age or gender, can enjoy its many attractions. In addition, there are also several exhibitions in the JRA museum located within the museum.
Tokyo Racecourse in Fuchu city, built in 1933, is considered the center of Japanese horse racing. Major races, such as the Japan Cup, the Tokyo Yushun (Japan Derby) and the Autumn Tenno Sho (the Emperor’s cup), are held here. It has two viewing stands: one is the Fuji View Grandstand which was newly built in 2007, and the other is the glass-covered Memorial 60 Grandstand. It is said the seating capacity is more than 200,000. On a sunny day in winter, visitors can see the beautiful snow-covered Mt.Fuji from the stand.
On the fifth floor of Fuji View Grandstand, a ladies-friendly facility, “Umajo”, is provided. It offers special services, such as free drinks and backyard tours, for the women visitors. Tokyo Racecourse is not only a place to buy betting tickets or watches races. Many facilities are also provided for families and children. Hiyoshi-gaoka is a playground with the pirate ship and athletic slide located near the east gate. In the Riding Center, you can try horseback riding or carriage rides. There is even a playground inside the racetrack. On race days, the facility is filled with a great many spectators and gamblers. However, when the racecourse does not have live races and is only used for off-track betting, many families come and spend time relaxing in the park.
In autumn 2019, some big races are scheduled to take place at Tokyo Racecourse. Races are held on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays. On October 14, there will be the Ireland Trophy Fuchu Himba (male) Stakes, and on October 27 the before Tenno-sho (the Emperor’s cup) will be held. After the main race on October 13, the national pony racing championship, "Jockey Babies", will be competed by junior riders selected from all over Japan.
The JRA Racing Museum is located just inside of the east gate. It was opened in 1991. With its presentations on the cultural aspects of horse racing, visitors from young children to adults can learn about the processes of horse racing. The museum has a live theater with 4-D screen and 5.1ch surround sound, a Museum Hall with a 150-inch visual display, a horse racing hall of fame, and permanent and special exhibitions. Visitors can learn all about horse racing from various points of view.
★ Suntory Musashino Brewery
Thanks to the high-quality water drawn from its deep wells, the “Premium Malt” beer, made in the Suntory Brewery, is famous for its luxuriousness. On the brewery tour, you can walk through the old beer tank of the plant, learn about malt, and have a close viewing of the brewing facility itself. At the end of the tour, visitors can also enjoy a complimentary beer tasting.
In addition, the Suntory rugby team is extremely strong, with five players from the company
While driving Chuo expressway, you can visit the Suntory Musashino Brewery, a brewery for one of Japan’s premier beer brands. In 1963, Musashino Brewery was built in Fuchu, as the first brewery of Suntory. The company values the quality of its water and uses only natural water pumped from the well in the facility. Using select ingredients and natural water, their flagship product “Premium Malt’s” was born in a small experimental brewery inside of the larger Musashino brewery.
At the brewery, free 70 minutes guided tours are offered almost everyday. You can learn about each step of the beer making procedures, from the ingredients to the brewing and packaging, while walking inside the brewery. The tours are held 8 times a day and anybody can join (reservation required). The highlight of the tour is, of course, the beer tasting. At the end of the tour, you can try 3 glasses of beer directly from the brewery. Three different flavors, "Premium Malt's", "Premium Malt's with a fruity taste", and "Master's Dream", are served from the tap.
They also offer "foam art", not unlike latte art, for your beer. You can request your favorite design from a choice of illustration and words. After enjoying the touch of creamy foam called the creamy “kami-awa” (Godly) foam on top of your beer, visit the gift shop to check out some of the souvenir, such as the brewery’s original glass, limited merchandise, and of course a box of Premium Malt’s!
Suntory also has a professional rugby team, Sungoliath, and 5 players have been selected to play for Team Japan in the 2019 Rugby World Cup. The team was founded in 1980 and has a long tradition. Their home ground is located nearby the brewery at Suntory Sport Center Fuchu. The company and Fuchu city have a long-term relationship.
A free shuttle bus takes you from JR Bubaigawara station to the brewery in 10 minutes. The bus departs at 40-45 minute intervals. Reservation is necessary for the tour, but you may visit the gift shop without reservation.
★ For smooth settlement, please pay with your credit card (PayPal), not bank transfer.
★Deadline for booking of this program is 10:00 am of 2 business days (JST) prior to the program date.
Total Price = Basic Fee + Fee per Person * Number of Participants + Tax
Guiding fee, Lunch
Public Transportation fee, Admission fee for visiting sites, Transportation fees to the meeting point
Please advise us if you have any religious or health restrictions, allergies, or the case where you would like to request a special care for participants, including children.