Keijiro Sawano, CEO of Heartland Japan (Liberta Inc.), assisted in the planning of a major feature in the subscription magazine “Nodule” (JTB Publishing) has published as an interview.

The theme of the feature was “Japan’s ancient roads that are attracting the world’s attention”.

He was asked to convey the appeal of Japan’s ancient highways from a foreigner’s point of view.

This is exactly what we at Heartland Japan do on a daily basis. It was a great pleasure for all of us at Heartland Japan to be able to present this concept as it is in the feature article.

The 62-page feature includes a 4-page interview with Keijiro Sawano.

The magazine features the Nakasendo, Tokaido, Kumano Kodo Iseji, Michinoku Coastal Trail, Saba Kaido, Kunisaki Hanto Minemichi Long Trail, and even the Hagi Okan.

We are very happy to see that our friends and guides, who are always a great help to us at Heartland Japan were featured in the magazine, and we were able to feel the joy of connecting people with each other through the ancient roads. We are truly happy.

We hope that more of us and the younger generation will walk along these “ancient roads” as a cool cultural experience.
For our Western clients, walking is a cool culture.
We believe that if we can reimport these values, Japanese people will pay more attention to the local resource of ancient roads, and pay more attention to their preservation and inheritance.
This is our unique approach to regional revitalization from a global perspective.

We will continue to work on regional revitalization from a global perspective utilizing ancient roads!
Let’s walk together!


■ “Nodule” (JTB Publishing)

■ Brand of our inbound business (Tokyo Governor Registered Travel Agency No. 2-7699)

Regional Development Department Site (English)

■ Liberta inc.(English)

Heartland Japan was quoted in a July 4 2018 Tokyo Business Today article. The article explores the question of how long Japan’s tourism boom will last.

Japan has experienced an unprecedented inbound travel boom that has grown year on year since 2013. This is no doubt a very welcoming development for Japan but it has not been without its struggles as cities such as Tokyo and Kyoto tackle with the challenges that have arisen, particularly in terms of infrastructure, language as well as cultural differences.

The article suggests that Japan is still struggling with these issues and that the tourist-saturated cities’ burden need to be reduced by providing information and services to allow travellers to explore the rest of Japan, outside of the so-called ‘Golden Route’. This is where private travel companies such as Heartland Japan can play a key role.

Read the full article here.

The CEO of Heartland Japan, Keijiro Sawano, was quoted in the June 1 2018 publication of The Japan Times.



The CEO of Liberta Inc., Keijiro Sawano, was quoted in the June 1 2018 publication of The Japan Times regarding Liberta’s subsidiary: Heartland Japan. Heartland Japan is an outdoor activity and rural experience luxury tour company, providing a land operating service that brings affluent foreign travellers to local regions where they can interact with locals and experience authentic Japan.

The aim of Heartland Japan is to communicate to the world the ‘real Japan’, the true heart of Japan that can be found in local regions across Japan.


Rather than focusing on the so-called ‘golden route’ that most visitors to Japan travel, Heartland Japan creates  programmes that tie the charm of rural areas into an experience that provides travellers with an authentic insight into Japan.

This includes:

1)Meeting locals: Visiting local manufacturers and producers such as sake breweries, soy sauce factories, farmers, fishermen, a dorayaki bakery, kagura workshop…

2)Activities: Walking, hiking, biking, canoeing, riding a fishing boat, watching a kagura performance and a kabuki performance by fishermen…

3)High quality guides that fulfil the customer’s intellectual curiosity, covering Japanese culture, history, lifestyle…

Currently the company is focusing on building up a network that includes English speaking countries as well as other Western countries such as Germany and Austria.

The company’s mission is to give new life to rural areas by inviting foreigners to these regions, creating a new image of Japan.

The dream is to make Japan’s localities into a global brand. Similar to that of Italy’s Cinque Terre, this dream will be realised by creating a brand image of these small villages and rural areas that is projected to the world.



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