Take a whiskey tour from Kyoto to Tokyo.
Once an oddity at the local liquor store, Japanese whiskies are now in such high demand that there's a global shortage. Want to get your hands on a bottle of Suntory Toki or Yamazaki 12 Year this summer? You'll need to head straight to the source. Most distilleries are located on Japan's main island of Honshu and offer both tours and tastings in English. You'll find the country's first (and most renown) whisky distillery, Yamazaki, a quick 20-minute train ride from Kyoto. About 2.5 hours west of Tokyo by train in the Akaishi Mountains lies the serene and wooded Hakushu distillery. And at the base of Mount Fuji you can learn how the area's mineral-rich spring waters enhance the taste of Fuji-Gotemba whisky.
What's new? Distilleries across the country have added English-language information and tours as Japanese whiskies gain a broader global appeal.