Sure, Japan is nothing short of the weird and wonderful but I’ve just found the coolest and most authentic Airbnb experience in Nakano, Nagano, Japan, a short 15-minutes drive from the infamous Japanese snow monkeys.
Arriving at Earth house quite late in the night, we were kindly greeted by Yuki and Junko. Let’s take a moment to just appreciate the kind hospitality of the Japanese people. I’ve travelled far and wide across the world and still feel like there’s no place quite like Japan. As I stepped into Earth house, I felt wonderful energy run through me. I knew I had walked into something special.
Little did I know before this that Yuki and Junko are creatives in their own right. Junko is a professional musician, singer, songwriter and pianist whilst Yuki paints, and creates pottery amongst many other talents I’m sure. It explains a lot about this charming little retreat, described as a creative hub for many travellers – a place where you can truly disconnect, to reconnect.
One thing to take note of is that Earth House doesn’t come with a shower (for now), but we weren’t bothered at all as it was a short stay for us and close to Jigokudani Yaen Koen a.k.a the Snow Monkey park.
After conversing through Google Translate and unearthing the ins and outs of this magical Airbnb, we spotted several artworks hung on the wall. My gut tells me they must be their beloved cats!
The quirkiness and character of this place ooze from every inch of this space. No wi-fi, TV or any form of technology to disturb your state of mind.
I woke up incredibly well rested on the traditional Japanese futons and found the calmness in waking up to snow falling around just outside our house.
But this isn’t where the magic ends. With an 8AM wake-up call, Yuki and Junko set out to make this experience even more unforgettable. As I’ve mentioned, Junko is a singer-songwriter and pianist – she performed three songs for us and it truly was the most special moment throughout our entire trip. We watched on in awe – a few of us even danced and cried tears of joy.
After a heartfelt performance, there was Yuki silently in the background preparing a traditional Green tea ceremony for us. It’s in these in-between moments, you appreciate customary traditions and truly live in the present.
Now I don’t know about you guys, but real people and real travel triumphs every other experience. Thank you, Airbnb for enabling us to travel and witness the local way of life as if it were our own momentarily.
If you’re looking to experience Airbnb for the first time, please use this link at the time of your booking.