Unique Nagano

Apple Picking -- Crown Farm

Eastern Nagano

Description

Crown Farm is a short distance from Togura-Kamiyamada Onsen. The owners have lived abroad and speak English (Mr. Tobita) and German (Mrs. Tobita), and are happy to share their enthusiasm for growing apples with visitors from overseas. They pride themselves on using natural alternatives to keep chemical pesiticides to a minimum.

"Unique Nagano" Recommendation

Nagano is one of Japan's top apple-producing prefectures. Besides the mainstay Fuji, several new varieties of apples have been developed in Nagano, primarily Akibae (deep red color -- think of the poison apple from Snow White), Shinano Sweet (red apple, sweeter than a Fuji), and Shinano Gold (similar to Golden Delicious). (Note: Shinano is the old name for Nagano.) Along with the new varieties, most orchards also have heritage varieties such as the tart "Kogyoku". If you visit an orchard, you will likely be surprised at how intensive the growing process here is. Can you imagine turning each individual apple 90-degrees so all sides get sun? Come see -- and taste -- for your self the care put into growing apples in Nagano.

The Tobita's must have been on the receiving end of a lot of kind treatment during their time overseas, because they always seem so willing to extend kindness to guests from abroad. The location is convenient to Togura-Kamiyamada Onsen, too. (T.L., America)

Access

By Car, From Sakaki IC on the Joshin'etsu Expwy, proceed down from exit 1.4km to Route 18 and turn right. Go north 5.5km to Route 498 (Togura Kamiyamada Onsen signal) and turn left. Proceed 1.3km across the Chikuma River to Route 77 and turn left. Go 950m to the 2nd light ("Mezawa Bridge") and turn right on to Route 55. Orchard office will be on the right in 1km. By Train, from Togura Station on the Shinano Railway line, take the #9 Bus to Chishiki-ji (approx. 12 min.) Orchard office just to the west.

Notes

Apple season is from late September to early December. The Tobitas also grow grapes, and that season is from early September to early October. Even outside the picking season you can still visit the orchard and see how they grow the apples. Mr. Tobita speaks some English and Mrs. Tobita speaks German.

Details

address :
1240 Kamiyamada Yasaka, Chikuma City, Nagano Pref. 389-0822
tel :
026-275-0929: crown-farm55@sky.hi-ho.ne.jp
url :
http://www.sky.hi-ho.ne.jp/crown-farm
hours :
Sun-up to sun-down during the picking season.
closed :
Open daily late September to early December
cost :
500 Yen for a tour of the orchard and tasting the fruit.
reservations :
Recommended for groups. By e-mail or telephone call.
participants :
1+