Nagano Prefecture is part of the Chubu region. It is also called “Shinshu” because it used to be called “Shinano Province”.
The largest city in the prefecture is Nagano City, which is also the prefectural capital.
Famous tourist attractions include Zenkoji Temple and Matsumoto Castle, both national treasures, as well as Kamikochi and Utsukushi-ga-hara with their beautiful scenery.
Old Karuizawa, Naraijuku, and Tsumagojuku, where visitors can enjoy walking around the city, are also popular.
There are also many hot spring resorts such as Nozawa Onsen, Shirakone Onsen, and Nichigami Onsen, which are easily accessible from Tokyo by Shinkansen bullet train, making the area a popular tourist destination.
On this page, I will introduce a selection of recommended and standard souvenirs from Nagano Prefecture.
10 classic souvenirs available in Nagano Prefecture
If you go to all this trouble, you will want to choose a souvenir that is popular in Nagano.
We have compiled a list of standard souvenirs.
- Raicho no Sato
- Marugoto apple pie
- Iijima Shoten Misuzu candy
- Masamura’s Tenshuishigaki sable
- Ringo otome
- Obusedo’s Kurishikanoko
- Chikufudo’s Dorayaki Yama
- Taiheido’s Mahoroba no Tsuki
- Ringonoki’s Nagano Apple Pie
- Itochu’s Sugomori
Raicho no Sato
“Raicho no Sato” is a pastry made in the shape of the grouse, the prefectural bird of Nagano Prefecture. It is a famous baked candy in Nagano.
It is a product with cream sandwiched between European-style crackers.
The mild cream goes well with the crunchy European-style cracker.
One of the attractions of this product is that it is easily available at train stations, convenience stores, and many other places.
They are also reasonably priced and last a long time, making them an easy choice as a souvenir.
Marugoto apple pie
Marugoto Ringo Pie” is a pie made from a whole Fuji apple. It is a typical cake from Nagano, which is famous for its apples.
The buttery dough, apples and sponge cake are a perfect match.
The whole apple is used in this cake, so it is very satisfying.
The package has a handle, so it is easy to give as a souvenir.
This is the perfect gift when you are looking for something controversial and unexpected.
Iijima Shoten Misuzu candy
Iijima Shoten is headquartered in Ueda City, Nagano Prefecture.
Misuzu Candy” is a confectionery of Iijima Shoten, which has a history of over 100 years.
You can enjoy the taste of a variety of fruits such as apricot, peach, apple, grape, plum and sampokan.
The unique texture and freshness of the fruits are addictive.
The beautiful appearance makes it a perfect gift for women. We recommend this product for people who like fruit-based sweets.
Masamura’s Tenshuishigaki sable
Masamura is a long-established confectionery company founded in 1968 in Matsumoto City, Nagano Prefecture.
Tenshukaku Ishigaki Sable” is one of Masamura’s most popular confections.
It is a thinly baked sable filled with macadamia nuts and coated with white chocolate. The texture is crisp and crunchy.
The package and individual wrappers depict Matsumoto Castle, a national treasure. It is a popular souvenir of Matsumoto.
The “Ringo Otome” is a confectionery characterized by the shape of an apple sliced into rounds.
The apple slices are placed on the dough, pressed and baked into thin cookies.
The crisp texture and natural sweetness of the apples are exquisite. Every time you eat them, you can feel the taste of apples.
They are individually wrapped and you can choose the number of pieces in a box, making them an easy choice as a souvenir.
Obusedo is a shop with its main store in Obuse-cho, Nagano Prefecture. It is famous for its chestnut sweets.
Kurishikanoko” is a chestnut kinton (chestnut candy) made with lots of Obuse chestnuts. The chestnut red bean paste is filled with large chestnuts.
The rich, sticky red bean paste and the texture of the chestnuts are irresistible.
It is also nice that you can choose from mini, small and large sizes. The mini size is recommended for souvenirs.
Chikufudo’s Dorayaki Yama
Dorayaki Yama” is one of Chikufudo’s most famous confections. It is a dorayaki filled with chestnut sweet bean paste.
The soft and moist dorayaki crust is filled with smooth chestnut bean paste.
The moment you eat it, the sweetness of the chestnuts fills your mouth.
The chestnuts are filled with a large amount of chestnuts, so it is very satisfying to eat.
The box-type package with a handle is suitable for souvenirs.
Taiheido’s Mahoroba no Tsuki
Taiheido’s “Mahoroba no Tsuki” is one of Nagano’s most famous sweets.
It is a steamed bun confection with chestnuts wrapped in chestnut bean paste.
The filling is very satisfying, with the chestnut filling stuffed tightly inside. The brown color is very appetizing.
You can choose the number of pieces to pack in a box, making it a perfect souvenir.
They will keep for about two weeks at room temperature, so they will be useful as souvenirs for your company.
Ringonoki’s Nagano Apple Pie
Ringo no Ki is a shop that specializes in making sweets using apples. There are many apple sweets that are typical of Nagano.
Nagano Apple Pie” is an apple pie made from Fuji apples grown in Nagano Prefecture.
The pie crust is made with carefully selected fermented butter, and sweet and sour apple stew is wrapped in the crust.
You can enjoy a real apple pie in an easy-to-eat size.
Since it is individually wrapped, it is easy to give as a souvenir.
Itochu is a long-established Japanese confectionery company based in Iida City, Nagano Prefecture.
Itochu’s “Nest Eggs” is a confection made in the image of eggs nestled in a nest.
It is a new type of Japanese candy with a mild red bean paste wrapped in white chocolate.
The chocolate part becomes crispy and tastes even better when chilled in the refrigerator.
One of the attractions of these candies is that you can enjoy a variety of flavors, such as fruit red bean paste and coffee red bean paste.
Since the number of pieces in a box can be selected, it is easy to use them as a souvenir to distribute to workplaces and friends.
Five cute souvenirs from Nagano
Stylish souvenirs and cute sweets are recommended if you want to give them to women and children.
We have collected cute souvenirs that you can buy in Nagano.
- Kaiundo’s Hakucho no Mizuumi
- Chikufudo’s KiriMonaka
- Iijima Shoten’s Misuzu Arare
- Kukuyashunsui’s Monzen Hatoawase Monaka
- Karuizawa Chocolate Factory’s chocolate ball mix
Kaiundo’s Hakucho no Mizuumi
Kaiundo is a confectionery company with its headquarters in Matsumoto City, Nagano Prefecture.
“Hakucho no Mizuumi” is a soft cookie with a texture similar to that of a rakugan, also known as a polpolone.
The surface of the cookie is decorated with a beautiful swan image.
The cookies have a fragile texture that crumbles in the mouth. The rustic taste with a hint of cinnamon is addictive.
The stylish packaging makes them a great souvenir or gift.
Chikufudo’s “KuriMonaka” is a dish filled with chestnut bean paste.
It is a beautiful monaka that looks like a chestnut.
Inside the savory monaka is a chestnut filling. The chestnut bean paste has an elegant sweetness, and you can also taste the softness of the chestnut.
You can enjoy the original taste of chestnuts to your heart’s content with this sweet that looks just like chestnuts.
Iijima Shoten’s Misuzu Arare
Misuzu Arare” by Iijima Shoten is a beautiful looking candy.
It is a soft agar candy filled with fruits of the four seasons.
You can enjoy six kinds of fruits such as apricot, sanbokan, grape, plum, apple and prune.
It is softer in texture than Misuzu candy, so it is easy for children and the elderly to eat.
The bite-sized pieces are perfect for tea cakes.
Kukuyashunsui’s Monzen Hatoawase Monaka
Monzen Hato Matching Monaka” by Kukyuuya Shunshiki is a cute monaka in the shape of a dove.
The monaka and white bean paste are included separately, so you can enjoy making your own monaka.
The white bean paste contains beans in four different colors, making it a visually appealing item.
It is lighter than the anko type monaka, so even those who do not like sweets can easily enjoy it.
Pleasant to look at, make, and eat, monaka is one of the most popular sweets in the kukyuu and shun-iki lineup.
Karuizawa Chocolate Factory’s chocolate ball mix
Bon Okawa Karuizawa Chocolate Factory is located in Karuizawa, Nagano Prefecture.
It offers colorful chocolates and delicious biscuits.
The “Chocolate Ball Mix” is an assortment of six different kinds of chocolate balls.
You can enjoy six different flavors: apple, blueberry, lemon, strawberry, bitter, and caramel.
The chocolate balls come in colorful wrappers and are very festive.
The stylish packaging also makes them a great gift.
Souvenirs other than sweets from Nagano Prefecture
In addition to sweets, there are other souvenirs from Nagano Prefecture that we can recommend.
For those who do not like sweets, it is a good idea to give non-sweet food souvenirs or miscellaneous goods unique to Nagano.
Recommended souvenirs other than sweets are as follows.
- Shinshu Nama Soba
- Hachimanya Isogoro’s Hichimi Togarashi
- Maruyama Coffee’s Original blend
- Arukuma’s goods
If you like delicacies, you may want to try bee larva or locust.
Oyaki” is a baked dough made of wheat or buckwheat flour and other ingredients. It is a well-known local dish of Nagano.
You can find oyaki with various ingredients such as nozawana, pumpkin, kabocha, dried daikon radish, vegetables, and red bean paste.
Famous oyaki shops in Nagano are as follows.
- Ogawa no Sho Oyakimura
Oyaki, a Nagano specialty, makes a great souvenir. You can enjoy comparing the different ways of baking and ingredients at different stores.
Shinshu Nama Soba
Nagano is famous for its “Shinshu soba” (buckwheat noodles). It is also a popular local food of Nagano.
If you are looking for a souvenir that is unique to Nagano, Shinshu soba is a good choice.
If you want to enjoy the smooth texture of soba, we recommend “fresh soba,” and if you want soba that lasts longer, we recommend “dried soba.
If you want to enjoy a taste comparison, it may be a good idea to send a set of soba as a gift.
Nozawana is one of the specialties of Nagano Prefecture.
Nozawana pickles” made from pickled Nozawana are also popular as a unique souvenir of Nagano.
In addition to the easy-to-eat lightly pickled type, there are also pickled nozawana with soy sauce and wasabi flavors.
Nozawana pickles are also available in supermarkets, so they are easy to find.
Hachimanya Isogoro’s Hichimi Togarashi
For those who like spicy food, Hachimanya Isogoro’s “Shichimi Karashi” is recommended.
This shichimi pepper is made from chili pepper, chenbin, sesame seed, hemp seed, shiso, sansho (Japanese pepper) and ginger.
There are three types to choose from: can type, bottle type, and bag type.
The smallest tin type is 400 yen including tax. It is inexpensive and easy to carry, making it a perfect souvenir.
Nagano is not only famous for nozawana pickles, but also for “wasabi pickles”.
As the name suggests, these are pickles made with wasabi. Most are made with wasabi, sakekasu (sake yeast) and salt.
The spiciness and flavor of wasabi can be felt in the pickles, making them a perfect side dish or snack.
They are souvenirs that even the elderly will enjoy.
Maruyama Coffee’s Original blend
Maruyama Coffee is a coffee shop located in Karuizawa. It offers a wide variety of coffee beans.
Among them, we recommend “Maruyama Coffee Blend”.
This coffee has a rich aroma and full taste. You can enjoy its chocolate-like taste.
It is a great gift for coffee lovers.
If you would like to choose a miscellaneous souvenir, we recommend the goods of “Alkuma”, a local Nagano character.
Alkuma is a bear character wearing an apple headdress.
There are several variations of the headgear, including Soba, Oyaki, and Sanada Yukimura.
They come in a variety of merchandise such as key chains, belts, and plush toys, making it easy to choose according to the recipient.
About where to buy souvenirs in Nagano
When buying souvenirs in Nagano Prefecture, you may wonder where to buy them.
So, we have compiled a list of places where you can buy souvenirs.
- Nagano Station
- Nagano Station Building MIDORI
- Matsumoto Station
- Ueda station
- Karuizawa Station
- Matsumoto Airport
- Nagano Tokyu Department Store
- Inoue Department Store
- Inoue Department Store Ai-City 21
- Zenkoji Temple (Nakamise Street)
- Matsumoto Castle
Nagano’s famous sweets can be purchased at various places such as train station kiosks, train station buildings, and department stores.
If you are traveling by car, you can also visit rest stops and service areas.
Among them, we recommend MIDORI in the Nagano Station Building if you want to see and choose from a variety of souvenirs.
You can choose from a wide variety of souvenirs, including not only Japanese and Western sweets, but also standard oyaki and pickles.
You can also buy souvenirs at the local supermarket “Tsuruya”.
If you are looking for a unique Nagano souvenir, you can stop by Tsuruya, a local supermarket.
They carry not only famous Nagano confections, but also Tsuruya’s exclusive sweets and juices.
Popular Tsuruya products include
- apple butter
- Shinshu apple juice
- apple karinto
- Dried fruits: Shinshu white peaches
- Maruyama Coffee – Tsuruya original blend
When you are looking for a unique souvenir from Nagano, check out Tsuruya.