The first signs of human habitation on Mie can be traced back 10,000 years and that’s only one of this ancient prefecture’s historical claims to fame. Lush mountains, crystal clear streams flowing from valleys to the sea, beautiful coves, small and large islands. . . Surrounded by the sea and mountains, Mie is a land where people have lived in harmony with nature since ancient times and visitors come in direct contact with the spirituality, rich culture and deep traditions of Japan.
Mie is situated in the center of Japan’s main island Honshu, on the Kii-hanto peninsula facing the Pacific Ocean. More than one third of the prefecture is made up of national parks; its craggy mountains, misty forests, and waterfalls were ideal for ninja training which you can still experience today in Iga, that is also the birthplace of haiku poet Basho.
Ise Jingu (Ise Grand Shrine) is by far Mie’s most famous attraction, encompassing nearly one-fifth of the picturesque coastal city of Ise. It’s an important temple complex to see and experience, dating back to the 3rd century. From Ise Jingu you can also join the trail of the ancient Kumano Kodo, walking the 170-km Iseji pilgrimage route to Wakayama Prefecture. In the Toba and Shima areas, you can see traditional female Ama (freedivers) at work and experience their life first hand at their “huts”. Remote Maruyama Senmaida is one of Japan’s most beautifully preserved rice paddy terraces, offering gorgeous views.
As Japan’s gourmet capital, Mie is famous for its seafood, including Ise spiny lobster, abalone and oyster, and is the breeding area of Matsuzaka cattle, famed for their high-class marbled Wagyu beef. It also boasts some of Japan’s unique leisure attractions, including the country’s biggest amusement park and a F1 Grand Prix track. All of which can be perfectly combined with top notch golf on stunning courses to complete your Mie “Golf Plus” Experience.
Away from the maddening crowds of Kyoto and Osaka, there is so much to see and do in this small prefecture, that your biggest concern will be if you are staying long enough to see it all. Luckily, it isn’t going anywhere in a hurry !!