Volunteer in a Zen Dojo in the countryside, Japan

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 Min stay requested: at least 2 weeks

  • Description


    Who likes to stay in a Zen Dojo in Nagano prefecture and help with daily work inside and outside? Surrounded by beautiful nature, many hot springs are also close by. It's a great place for relaxing, enjoying a quiet time and exploring the Japanese countryside.
    Experience zazen meditation (if you like) and help with repair work, gardening (mostly weeding) and general maintenance.
    I especially like to welcome people who could hold a Yoga workshop or offer creative activities for people to join! Please let me know your unique talents and creative ideas!

    Anybody over 25 years old and with an international driver's licence (A MUST! For a little pickup truck with manual drive to do your shopping and to get around) is welcome.
    As you would have to stay alone overnight, I prefer to have two guests at the same time. (I live 15 minutes away by car, but I am always around to work with you.)

    Workaway dates for 2018:
    from May 21, 2 -3 weeks (people with some building skills, woodwork)
    June 14 - 30
    July 13 - 31
    August 14 - 31 (1 person open)
    September 13 - 30
    October 1 - 14

  • Type of help

    Type of help

    General Maintenance
    Help with Computers / internet

  • Help


    Gardening, weeding, repair work, painting, homepage help. 3-4 hours a day, 5 days a week.
    Help with workshops (Yoga etc., creative activities...)

  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Travelers can experience life in Japan in a rural area, live in a traditional old farm house, enjoy and explore the quiet surroundings and join the weekly meditation program or other events during their stay.

  • Languages spoken

    Languages spoken

    German, English, Japanese

  • Accommodation


    The renovated store house for accommodation is 80~90 years old. Japanese style accommodation. Shower only, but hot springs are not far. Free use of kitchen to prepare your meals.

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    Closest train station: Suzaka. Next big city: Nagano (25 min. by local train). Nagano is 2 hs by bullet train from Tokyo near the Japanese Alps (Winter Olympics 1998). Highway buses from Tokyo to Nagano are also available.

    We are a family of Zen priests (Soto Zen and Rinzai Zen). My husband is Japanese, I am German, we have two sons, one a Soto Zen priest/DJ, one a dancer.

    I'm looking forward to welcome anybody who has some interest in Zen and is willing to help me out with the maintenance. You have to cook for yourself. It is not far from the town center, though the place itself is surrounded by nature and is very quiet.

    Please always keep the place tidy and clean as also other guests will visit.

    Our little truck (manual drive; international license necessary) is sufficient for shopping and getting to nearby hot springs. You are welcome to use it, but please refill it with gasoline at the end of your stay.

    As workaway is not a home-stay program you should be willing to stay alone at night, but I try to accommodate two people at the same time for company.

    Internet is available but I recommend to use the free WiFi spots in town. I can offer use of a portable modem, but I have to pay a monthly fee of 6000 Yen, so for a two weeks stay I would have to charge 3000 Yen. (7 Gigabytes per month available).

    Please contact me via the site and let's talk about the details over Skype.

    You are welcome to take part in the Zen program (3 half days minimum) for a small fee, but weekly zazen meditation on Wednesday evening is free.

  • A little more information

    A little more information

    • Internet access

    • Limited internet access

      Limited internet access

    • We have pets

    • We are smokers

  • How many Workawayers can stay?

    How many Workawayers can stay?


  • ...

    Hours expected

    3-4 hours a day, 5 days

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Host ref number: 371566294782