Celebrity’s Global Insiders: Kobe, Japan

Kobe Japan

Celebrity has teamed up with one of the world’s most influential travel brands, Travel + Leisure, to create a group of savvy travel and lifestyle experts who offer insights on everything from the destinations that Celebrity visits, to the modern luxury vacation experiences they provide. This group—known as Celebrity’s Global Insiders—share their favorite finds around the globe so that you can travel like a pro, crafting unique and memorable experiences in key destinations on all seven continents. 

Perched on a hillside overlooking the sea, Kobe is one of Japan’s most attractive and cosmopolitan cities. Home to two world-renowned food and drink offerings—Kobe beef and sake—this small, yet metropolitan city offers visitors a variety of incredible restaurants, kuras (or breweries) and nightclubs. Plus, given Kobe’s small size, most of its main attractions are within walking distance of the main train stations.

Here’s how Celebrity’s Global Insiders recommend spending your time when docked in Kobe, Japan.

MARC MURPHY CroppedMarc Murphy (Executive Chef and owner of Benchmarc Restaurants)

Kobe is a beautiful port city that’s full of cosmopolitan charm and international flavor. As its name suggests, it’s also known for its exquisite Kobe beef. Be sure to treat yourself to this local delicacy at least once during your visit. You can’t go wrong at Kobe Ishidaya, where the meat is cooked on a teppanyaki grill. The perfect accompaniment to any meal in Kobe is sake, as this is also one of Japan’s top sake producing areas.

Alicia Ng CroppedAlisa Ng (Founder and CEO of ShopLatitude.com)

Home of one of the world’s most expensive cuts of beef, Kobe’s cool vibe makes it Japan’s most happening city. Dozens of celebrated architects ranging from Frank Gehry to Frank Lloyd Wright have left their mark on this city, which is framed by the thick forests of Mount Rokko. The hot place to shop is Tor Road in the arty Sannomiya district, where you’ll find the best selection of vintage Japanese kimonos at Kobe’s Haberdashery (between Tor Road and Ikuta Street).  Of course, you’ll want to sample the Kobe beef. I suggest Aragawa, one of first restaurants in Japan to serve this city’s most famous dish.

Kate Betts CroppedKate Betts (Fashion journalist and award-winning magazine editor)

If you’re into crafts make a beeline to the six-story Yuzawaya craft store. They sell everything from Washi tape to sewing machines, every kind of colored pencil and thousands of varieties of beads, chalk, stamps, thread and ribbons. The endless variety and impeccable display are distinctly Japanese.

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