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Dine in an Ama Hut with Mie's Traditional Female Freedivers

ID
488
Dining Experiences
Dine & dance with ama divers as you learn about the women who are keeping the 2000-year-old tradition of freediving alive in Mie Prefecture. (Eat! Meet! Japan 2020 Silver Award)
1.5 hours
Japanese, English
Highlights
Meet Mie Prefecture's ama (literally “sea women”) female freedivers
Enjoy freshly-caught seafood that’s grilled over a firepit
Hear stories about ama diving and have a Q&A session with an ama diver
Try on traditional ama garb
Dance along to the Osatsu Ondo local folk song
ID
488
For each guest that attends this experience, byFood will donate
10 meals
Experience Details
Mie Prefecture is home to half of Japan's two thousand remaining ama (female freedivers), with a history of freediving in Japan that stretches back 2000 years. For them, freediving is somewhat like a spiritual practice, with their own rituals and superstitions. Learn about the symbols and practices of these incredible women as you hear firsthand from the ama divers themselves and enjoy a meal of local seafood. During this experience, gather with a group of freedivers in their ama hut and taste their freshly-caught bounty from the Matoya Bay. The ama-san are expert hunters, retrieving seafood like abalone, turban shells, and Ise lobster from 10 meters deep, spending approximately a minute underwater at a time. Keeping up with the times, they use wetsuits; however, they forgo the use of oxygen tanks to keep the traditional spirit alive. With warm hospitality and everpresent laughter and smiles, the ama-san are welcoming hosts, whether they’re grilling up the day’s catch over a fire pit, telling stories of their past dives, wrapping guests in traditional ama garb, or teaching their traditional folk dance, the Osatsu Ondo. These impressive women dare to go where (almost) no man has… Although ama have just recently started welcoming men into their ranks, the ama population is declining as more and more young locals move to cities to work. Freediving is dangerous, but the ama are a resilient and cheerful group. These seasoned diving veterans are in high spirits and have much to teach, and meeting them in their ama hut for an afternoon of dining and dancing is a truly “ichi-go ichi-e” (once in a lifetime) experience.
Inclusions
One of five different course meals (choose from options below)
Commemorative photo with ama-san, while dressed in ama garb
Traditional folk dance lesson
Exclusions
Transportation fees
Meeting Point and Meeting Time
25 minutes by car from Kintetsu Toba Station (Set the gas station "Eneos Nagaokaya Oil Store" (エネオス長岡屋石油店) as the relay point and set Osatsu-cho, Toba City, Mie Prefecture as the goal point)
Remarks
All rooms have barrier-free entrances, wheelchair-accessible toilets, free rental wheelchairs
There is a men's and women's prayer room for Muslims
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Adult
(13 - 120)
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(3 - 12)
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October
2021
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Earliest available date: October 25, 2021
from
¥ 3,500
per guest
Please note that the time is in Japan Standard Time.
For each guest that attends this experience, byFood will donate
10 meals
Other
Halal
Pescetarian
Wheelchair Accessible
Stroller Accessible
Family-friendly
With lunch