Japanese Traditional Incense at Kunjudo

Experience incense making experience in Awaji Island

By Javeria Tariq    - 3 min read

The Kunjudo incense factory is in northwestern part of Awaji Island. Last week, I had chance to visit Kunjudo with my friends and it was once in a lifetime experience. The tour starts with an enlightening short video about the origin of incense making. It was interesting to know the story of how incense making came into existence. Furthermore, according to formal records, it originated in Awaji Island in the Asuka period in 595 CE. The first ever Agarwood incense was presented to Prince Shōtoku and the Empress Suiko in southern coast of Awaji Island.

The tour takes around 15 minutes and the cost is quite reasonable about 400 yen per person. A Japanese speaking staff member took us to the factory and nicely explained the whole process from preparing, kneading, mixing, cutting, drying, inspecting, all the way to packing. Although, the guide explained in Japanese, the written material given to us was in English. So, it was easier to understand the process. The lady was kind enough to answer all our questions regarding the manufacturing, packing and distributing of the products. Also, using the sense of touch and smell made it a stimulating experience.

After the tour, the exciting part begins. The environment was tranquil and smelled pleasant. Gloves and apron are provided along with all necessary items to make your own incense. One of the staff member guides the process and helps with mixing and shaping. The experience reminded me of my childhood time while playing with play-dough and it was a relaxing time. Moreover, we get to take our incense with us in nice a package and mat for burning. For more information: https://www.kunjudo.co.jp/try/

Koharushodo Co., Ltd. (Kunjutsu) company enjoys corporate history of about 121 years (originated in October 1893). Over many years they have customized, diversified and modified their products using eco-friendly and 100% natural ingredients. I really loved their souvenir shop-showroom and all the variety they had as their final product. There are different shapes, types (direct and indirect burning) and flavors of incenses. The company uses many kinds of flowers along with unusual roots, barks and herbs to make traditional Japanese incenses. Incense have different benefits that ranges from healing, sharpening senses, purifies, calming etc. For more information on products: https://www.kunjudo.co.jp/catalog/.

Getting there

By train:

  • From JR "Sannomiya" station or Hankyu / Hanshin "Sannomi" station High-speed bus
  • From JR / Sanyo "Maiko" station High-speed bus
  • Get off at "Takadaya Kaibei Park" row "Gunje" bus stop, about 5 minutes on foot

By car:

About 10 minutes from Kobe Awaji Naruto Expressway "Tsunami Ichinomiyaku Interchange".
Turn right at the traffic lights that comes down the IC and take the prefectural road "66" straight to the prefectural road "88".
It passes "Ikeunoku Shrine" on the right hand side and it is just 300 m  before the "county house" signal on the right hand side.

Parking is free.

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Javeria Tariq

Javeria Tariq @javeria.tariq

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