Founded in 2017 by two chefs and former restaurateurs, our mission is to share the amazing food, culture, and natural beauty of Japan. We have a passion for food and adventure, and decades of experience traveling to and living in Japan. We love small local businesses and believe you can’t really appreciate Japan unless you experience it like a local. Traveling to any country can take hours of planning and preparation, and traveling to Japan can be even more challenging. Let us take care of the details while you enjoy the journey.
Travel, Food & Culture
Taking our inspiration from nearly 20 years in the hospitality industry as chefs and entrepreneurs, we strive to create exciting travel experiences that involve all five senses – sight, smell, hearing, taste, and touch. Our tours focus on visiting farms and markets, taking classes and learning new skills, meeting new friends, and eating good food. So, roll up your sleeves and get your hands dirty (so to speak), because we know this can be one of your most satisfying and unforgettable experiences ever.
Sustainability. A Core Value
As travelers, we are committed to helping to sustain local economies and preserve cultures. We are dedicated to “traveling green” as much as possible, taking public transportation, visiting individual farmers and artists, supporting small businesses, and providing “farm to table” experiences. We believe responsible travel can be a force for good in this world, as it breaks barriers and creates new connections between people. Traveling sustainably enables us to help preserve the local cultures, arts, crafts, environments, and rural economies that we visit.
Meet the team
Founder, Travel Advisor
Hi, my name is Koshiki. I am a travel advisor and founder of Tanpopo Journeys. As a Certified Japan Specialist, a tour guide, interpreter, chef, and former restaurant owner I bring 20+ years of hospitality experience and expertise to the company. Japan is a fascinating country with unique food, culture, and language, but it is often confusing to travelers. So, let us navigate the complexities of booking, guiding, and interpreting for you, so you can experience the best of what Japan has to offer.
Travel Specialist, Accounting + Operations
I was born in Okinawa, but fate must have brought me back to Japan in 1998 when Koshiki and I took our first trip together to Tokyo, Kumamoto, and Kagoshima. Later, after I finished a degree in international management, we opened the first Japanese restaurant in Minnesota focusing on udon, soba and Japanese home cooking. Koshiki and I sold the restaurant in 2017 to pursue our passion for Japan, food, travel and bringing people together.
Travel Guide + Interpreter, Artist
Kenneth Schweiger is an accomplished visual artist living and working out of his studio in Lowertown, St. Paul. After graduating from DePaul University in Chicago, he lived in Tokyo and studied Japanese classical and contemporary fine art and culture. With his abundance of energy and kindness and passion for Japanese arts, Kenny has been helping guide our small group journeys since 2019.