General information

Each school receives a customised program tailored to students' abilities and prior learning. The program is supported by pre-excursion materials.

For schools in remote areas, we can organise online, virtual visits.

Getting there

The Nihongo Tanken Centre is a 15-20 minute walk from Kirrawee Station.


The Nihongo Tanken Centre features a Japanese-style room, a fully-equipped technology room and a Japanese garden.

Low tables on tatami floor
Image: Japanese-style room

The interior includes many Japanese elements including a genkan and a large tatami room with tokonoma and shooji screens, made by Japanese craftsmen. The garden was created by a professional Japanese gardener.

Red kimono on display
Image: Kimono
Japanese garden with stepping stones
Image: Japanese garden at the centre

Advance preparation

Names of visiting students and staff and definite numbers for catering need to be provided at least one week prior to the excursion.

Pre-excursion materials can be accessed from this website or emailed to your school.

Centre staff will liaise with you about the details of your excursion.

A cancellation fee of $10.00 per student will be charged if an excursion is cancelled less than 4 weeks prior to the excursion date.

The minimum number of students catered for is 20. Schools with groups less than 20 should discuss their individual circumstances with centre staff. However, groups may be combined with other schools where possible to maximise access to all students. The maximum number of students catered for is 32 for high schools and 36 for primary schools for safety reasons.

Teachers are required to:

  • provide centre staff with students’ prior language levels giving as much detail as possible to ensure appropriate programming
  • ensure that students understand the protocols of the centre.


We ask that all visitors to the Nihongo Tanken Centre observe the following protocols:

  • Shoes are to be removed on entering the centre and stored with bags and personal belongings in the entrance area. Slippers are provided to be worn on the wooden floors but they are to be removed on entering the tatami room. Socks or stockings are to be worn on the tatami. No bare feet are allowed. The procedure of entering a Japanese house is demonstrated on the group's arrival.
  • Eating and drinking are prohibited in the centre except in the designated lunch areas. Chewing gum is not permitted at any time.
  • Students are asked to take care when passing the paper screens as they are very fragile.
  • All visitors to the centre must refrain from smoking inside the school grounds.


Teachers accompanying their students to the Nihongo Tanken Centre are expected to participate as staff members in the day's program. Their involvement in the program will assist in:

  • motivating the active participation of the students
  • encouraging students during a day in which only Japanese is spoken
  • supervising students during activities and during lunch and morning tea breaks
  • ensuring that students do not enter the white pebbled area of the garden
  • ensuring students understand and follow the rules of the centre
  • ensuring students do not litter any areas of the centre including the Japanese garden.

At all times, the accompanying teachers will be responsible for the behaviour and discipline of their students at the centre. To ensure that students are able to participate fully in the program, any disruptive students will be referred to their teacher. The participating school accepts responsibility for damage caused by any irresponsible behaviour.

What to bring

Please bring:

  • lunch (if required)
  • a drink
  • socks or stockings to wear inside the centre.

Lunch options

Obentoo (lunch packs) $9.00 per person. A minimum number of 15 obentoo is required for an order to be delivered to the centre.

Optional making onigiri (rice balls) activity

Students can participate in the making of onigiri. Onigiri are made at the centre (approximately 25 min activity) and form part of the activities within the program. If your school chooses to make onigiri the whole group must participate. Please indicate on the booking form the numbers required and confirm with the centre at least a week prior to the excursion.


The GST-inclusive cost of a visit to the centre is:

  • $16 per student for NSW government schools
  • $31.00 per student for non-government and interstate schools.

The fee covers the cost of:morning tea of juice and rice crackers and equipment for activities

Optional activity

Making onigiri (rice ball): $3.50 per student

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