Mother Bokujo (Mother Farm) is one of the places that brings back my pleasurable yet nostalgic childhood memories of living in the Chiba countryside.
The farm is quite a popular destination from the Tokyo metropolitan area. You will find easy access by train or bus from Tokyo station. You can have a day trip from Tokyo or you can stay overnight in a cottage on the farm to relax and take more time to enjoy the area.
Mother Bokujo is a wide spread of farming pastureland in Chiba Prefecture, built in 1962 by Hisakichi Maeda. Mr. Maeda is credited for starting the Sankei Shinbun Daily Newspaper and Tokyo Tower.
Mr. Maeda’s parents lived in suburbs of Osaka. They were a poor family. His mother would often say,"if we had just one more cow, our life would be so much more easier." Her words had such an impact on him that and he became involved in the stock-raising industry for contributing to the Japanese people. The Mother Farm was formed in dedication to his Mother.
The farm with a large lot of 2.5 million square meters entertains visitors with a wide variety of pleasures such as interaction with animals, and activities such as milking, piggy races and harvesting of season’s crops. The grounds abound with beautiful seasonal flowers in Spring, Summer and Autumn.
One of the highlights of the entertainment is the famous and hilarious sheep show held in the Agro dome. You would never think that sheep could be taught so many tricks.
They have gift shops selling a wide range of original dairy product, ham and sausages. Restaurant serving a Mongolian mutton barbecue, strawberry and fruit tomato farms are all available on the site. Mother Bokujo rents out furnished cottages complete with appliances.
The place offers a variety of hands on experience. You can take horse-rides in a paddock, which costs an extra JPY200 for each person. There's a guided-tour available. The tour takes approximately 55 minutes. You can get a ride either on a shuttle bus or a Massey-Ferguson tracker to meet cow, sheep and alpaca. You will also encounter pigs, sheep, goats and miniature horses and it’s OK to touch them too.
In spring, cherry blossoms contribute to the panoramic view over the valley. There are also blueberries, rape blossoms and azalea. You can enjoy autumn foliage and some 70,000 of scarlet sage from mid-September to mid-November. You can pick different fruits and vegetables like strawberries, plums, kiwi fruits and potatoes at reasonable rates.
Mother Bokujo is more than just an amusement park even though one exists on the premises with go-karts, bungee jumping and a giant wheel.
Entry costs are JPY1,500 for junior high school students and older, JPY800 for primary school students. The farm is open from 9:30 a.m. till 4:30 p.m., and from 9:30 a.m. till 5:00 p.m. on weekends and holidays.
Take a JR line from Tokyo Station to Kimitsu Station. Or take a highway bus from Tokyo Station to Kimitsu Station. It is a little over an hour from Tokyo both by train and bus. There is a free shuttle bus from Kimitsu Station to Mother Farm.