When people think of Kobe, cows and sheep aren’t usually the things that come to mind, but while tall buildings and attractions grace the port city, the great thing about Kobe is that there is also a mountainside. Kobe’s Mount Rokko is home to various nature activities: hiking, kayaking, walking through the gardens, and don’t get me started with the view! The thing that was most peculiar for me to see however, was the farm on the hill. I do not know if many foreign visitors would be interested in going to farm in Japan, but this little place is fun.
The Rokkosan Pasture is just filled with animals. The person in charge was kind enough to show me around, while baby goats who slipped through their fence followed us; it was the neatest experience! “Don’t get too close to the big goats,” he said. “They like to head butt,” he laughed. If you visit during the day time, you will see sheep scattered all across the farm. They are quite friendly, and the children that I observed were having the time of their lives, excited for the unusual experience. I had never seen baby sheep prior to this visit, but they looked so adorable as they wobbled their way around. The farm offers pony rides, cheese making, and food to feed the animals including the ducks in the pond. For safety reasons, only the sheep and baby goats are allowed to freely walk around, but all the animals are friendly and sweet.
Some details regarding what is offered at the farm:
- Butter making: Everyday. Cost: ¥800
- Cheese making: Only during weekdays. Cost: ¥1,000
- Sheep herding : Can be seen once a day every day from 1:30 p.m.; on weekends twice a day from 11:30 a.m. to 13:30 p.m. No fee.
- Craft making with sheep wool: Only on weekends 10 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Cost: ¥800
- Feeding the animals: Everyday for ¥100
- Horseback riding: Ponies from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Cost: ¥300 Horses: From 1:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. and 3:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. Cost: ¥500
- Bottle feeding the baby cows: Twice a day at 1:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m. available for the first 12 visitors. Cost: ¥200
- Pizza making: Once a month (check website): 12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. Must be a group of 12. Cost ¥3,000 for two 20 cm pizzas