Amanohashidate – One of the Top Three Scenic Places in Japan

Amanohashidate (天橋立), elected to be one of the Three Views of Japan (日本三景, Nihon Sankei), is one of the celebrated scenic sites in Japan that most Japanese would love to visit at least once in their life. The place is just stunning throughout the year. There is cherry blossom in spring, maple leaves in autumn, the area is even more beautiful when the sandbar and the surrounding area are covered in white snow!

Photo from 海の京都DMO

The 3.6 km sandbar with 5,000 pine trees growing on top is what makes Amanohashidate so famous. When you view it from the observation decks on top of the hill, Amanohashidate looks like a flying dragon and a Bridge to Heaven when seen upside down. Other ways to explore the charm of Amanohashidate can be cycling on top of that dragon or taking a boat ride to see it from various angles.

Read on to find out all the information you need to know about this gorgeous part of Kyoto! But before we introduce to you all the attractions at Amanohashidate below, let’s talk about how you can get there first. It isn’t close to Kyoto city centre after all!

How to Get to Amanohashidate

Depending on how you get there, the time required from Kyoto is around 2 – 3 hours.

By JR Limited Expres – Hashidate-gō (はしだて号) from Kyoto

JR Kyoto Station (京都駅) → Amanohashidate Station (天橋立駅)
< 2.5 hours

There are two ways that you can get to Amanohashidate by train. The first choice is by taking the limited express – Hashidate-gō from Kyoto. This is the fastest way to get to Amanohashidate albeit the most expensive. You will be there for less than 2.5 hours.

Note that the limited express – Kinosaki-gō (きのさき) might be replacing Hashidate-gō. If you want to check which trains will be running, please do so by using the Timetable Finder on JR West’s website HERE.

Tips: Get the JR Kansai WIDE Area Pass (5 Days) to save. A one-way trip from Kyoto to Amanohashidate costs 4,590 yen (2,300 yen for children). So a return trip will be almost the cost of the pass that costs 10,000 yen for adults (5,000 for children)! Get yours before you depart for Japan to save on tax through KLOOK!

By JR Train from Kyoto + Kyoto Tango Railway (京都丹後鉄道)

JR Kyoto Station (京都駅) → JR Fukuchiyama Station (福知山駅) → (Miyazu Station (宮津駅)) → Amanohashidate Station (天橋立駅)
2.5 – 3 hours excluding waiting time

You can also change train at JR Fukuchiyama Station (福知山駅). This method gives you a lot more flexibility with more services throughout the day. HERE is the timetable departing for Amanohashidate. For the timetable for the return trip, please refer to HERE. Note that if you are catching the local train, you will need to change trains at Miyazu Station (宮津駅) for Amanohashidate. HERE is the timetable for trains departing from Miyazu Station. All trains will stop at Amanohashidate (天橋立).

HERE is the rail map for Kyoto Tango Railway for a better picture of how you can hop in between the train lines. Scroll down for English names of all stations. HERE is the fare table for Kyoto Tango Railway.

Another benefit of taking Kyoto Tango Railway or Tantetsu (丹鉄) is its sightseeing trains. There are three of them that you can choose from.

  • Tango Kuromatsu-gō (丹後くろまつ号): A restaurant-style train
    • Reservation required
    • The most expensive but luxurious train
  • Tango Akamatsu-gō (丹後あかまつ号): A cafe-style train
    • Reservation required
    • Normal train fare + 550 yen
  • Tango Aomatsu-gō (丹後あおまつ号)
    • No reservation required
    • Normal train fare

For more information and reservation, please refer to their website HERE.

Tips:
☛ The JR Kansai WIDE Area Pass (5 Days) can be used to board the Tango trains. Note you can only board non-reserved carriages
☛ You can also consider getting one of the discounted ticket deals that give you unlimited rides on Tantetsu and/or other rail lines and bus routes. For more information, please refer to HERE and scroll down to the bottom of the webpage.

JR Kyoto Station (京都駅) → JR Nishimaizuru Station (西舞鶴駅) → Amanohashidate Station (天橋立駅)
A bit less than 3 hours

You can also choose to change at Nishimaizuru Station for Tantetsu Railway. It also will take around 2.5 – 3 hours excluding waiting time for this option. HERE is the timetable departing for Amanohashidate. For the timetable for the return trip, please refer to HERE.

By JR Train from Osaka + Kyoto Tango Railway (京都丹後鉄道)

JR Osaka Station (大阪駅) → JR Fukuchiyama Station (福知山駅) → Amanohashidate Station (天橋立駅)
2.5 – 3 hours

If you are coming from Osaka, the fastest way is to take Kōnotori-gō (こうのとり号) from JR Osaka Station (大阪駅) and transfer at JR Fukuchiyama Station for the Limited Expres – Hashidate-gō. The required travel time for this option can be around 2 – 2.5 hours if you can catch the Hashidate-gō straightaway.

Important: You will have limited time to change trains.

JR Osaka Station (大阪駅) → JR Nishimaizuru Station (西舞鶴駅) → Miyazu Station (宮津駅) → Amanohashidate Station (天橋立駅)
A bit more than 3 hours

If you aren’t catching the limited express, then change trains at Nishimaizuru Station to get to Miyazu Station and then Amanohashidate. The timetable for the service is HERE.

By Bus from Kyoto or Osaka

You can also take an express bus from Kyoto or Osaka. It takes just a bit over 2 hours from Kyoto and around 2 hours and 40 minutes from Osaka.

To check the bus timetable and for reservations, please refer to Tango Kairiku Kōtsū (丹後海陸交通)’s website HERE.

Travelling with Tours

There are also tour packages available.

About Amanohashidate and How to Get Around the Area

Amanohashidate is a sandbar at Miyazu Bay (宮津湾) in northern Kyoto. The 3.6 km long sandbar has a width ranging from 20 to 170 metres was created by crustal movements, connecting the Miyazu Bay’s north and south end. From the ancient myth recorded in the Tango (丹後) area’s documentation, Amanohashidate was the ladder used by gods named Izanagi (イザナギ) and Izanami (イザナミ) when they visit the earth from heaven. One day, when Izanagi was taking a nap, the ladder collapsed and became Amanohashidate when it landed on earth.

To get a clear view of such a geographical spectacle, if you don’t make your way up to the observation decks at Amanohashidate View Land and Kasamatsu Park, you will have a pretty hard time persuading your families and friends that you have been to Amanohashidate.

Bike Rental at Amanohashidate

Before you start your day at Amanohashidate, you can head to Amanohashidate Sightseeing Information Center (天橋立観光協会) after you get out of the ticket gate. Apart from grabbing a map, the staff there will also assist you to plan the best route of exploration if you haven’t got one.

The area map HERE has the shops marked with a bicycle mark for you to refer to. Of course, the staff at the information centre may be able to give you recommendations.

From Amanohashidate Station to the south end of Amanohashidate, it is only a 5 minutes’ walk. For those who aren’t looking forward to trekking 3.6 km one-way, there are quite a few bike rental shops around the station that you can shop around from.

Photo from 海の京都DMO

With a bicycle, you can cut down your travel time from around an hour to around 20 minutes to go from the south to the north of Amanohashidate. As there are well-maintained tracks on the sandbar, there is no need to worry about your bike’s tires being caught by sand.

Tips:
☛ If you are going to both Amanohashidate View Land (天橋立ビューランド) and Kasamatsu Park (傘松公園), you will want to be at Kasamatsu Park in the morning and Amanohashidate View Land in the afternoon for better lighting and therefore better photos.
☛ Get the Two Fantastic Viewpoints Special Ticket (日本三景天橋立二大展望めぐりチケット) to save if you are visiting both parks.

Tango Kairiku Kōtsū’s Bus

The second option is by taking bus services running by Tango Kairiku Kōtsū (丹後海陸交通). The bus is commonly known as Taikai Bus. It stops at major attractions in the area so if you don’t want to walk too much or are looking to head to attractions further away from the station, it will be a good choice for you.

For the service’s timetable, please refer to their website HERE.

Amanohashidate Sightseeing Boat (天橋立観光船)

You can also choose to get from the south to the north of Amanohashidate by taking the sightseeing boat. It is actually recommended because you get to photo the sandbar from the sea from various angles. Amanohashidate Pier is less than a 5 mins’ walk from Amanohashidate Station.

The boat actually also stop at Miyazu Pier (宮津桟橋) that is around a 10 minutes’ walk from Miyazu Station (宮津駅), which is another way that you can get to Amanohashidate. But just note the number of services is extremely limited.

For boat fare and timetable, please refer to their website HERE.

Tips: If you have got the combo ticket for your admission to both Amanohashidate View Land and Amanohashidate Kasamatsu Park, remember to show the ticket to the staff when you are getting your boat ticket for a discount. HERE is the website for the deal.

Click HERE to get back to a list of attractions in Amanohashidate.

Chie Hot Spring (智恵の湯)

Photo from 海の京都DMO

Just next to Amanohashidate Station, there is this public bathhouse – Chie no Yu. If you aren’t staying overnight at Amanohashidate, you can make this spot the last attraction of the day to rejuvenate in their onsen before you head to the train station.

Note that the onsen pools at Chie Hot Spring aren’t particularly spacious. If it get crowded, you might want to give it a pass.

Tips: Grab one of the coupons from Amanohashidate View Land or Amanohashidate Sightseeing Information Center in Amanohashidate Station to get a 100 yen discount (50 yen for primary school students) for the admission fee.

Chie Hot Spring’s Opening Hours, Admission Fees, and Access Information

  • Chie Hot Spring is opened from 12 am to 9 pm daily except Wednesdays
  • The admission fee is
    • 700 yen for adults
    • 350 yen for primary school students
    • Free for one pre-school child per adult

Amanohashidate View Land (天橋立ビューランド)

If you have limited time and can only going to one of the two observation parks, we would recommend going to Amanohashidate View Land. It is closer to the station and, from Kasamatsu Park, the sandbar just looks like a straight line.

Photo from 海の京都DMO

If Amanohashidate View Land is your first stop, make a right turn after you got out of the station. Follow the road until you see the brown street sign asking you to make another right turn (or you can follow Google Map on your phone of course). You should get to the Amanohashidate View Land Lift and Monorail Boarding Area (天橋立ビューランド リフト・モノレールのりば) in 5 – 10 minutes.

There are two ways to get to Amanohashidate View Land, by single-seating Chairlift and by Monorail for you to choose from. The park’s admission fees include the return cost of the chairlift and/or monorail. No matter which mode of transport you choose, the costs are the same.

For ticket and operating hours information, please refer to their website HERE. Also, don’t forget to check out the special ticket deals on their website HERE. You might also be able to get a discount at other facilities in the area if you show the Amanohashidate View Land admission ticket.

Tips: We will highly recommend taking the monorail on the way up and the chairlift on the way down. This is because your back will be facing Amanohashidate on the way up meaning there won’t be too much scenery for you to enjoy. Plus, the monorail is usually packed on the way down. When taking the monorail on the way up, do try to get to the back of the carriage so you have access to the window facing Amanohashidate.

Once you got to the top of the mountain, you will realise that Amanohashidate View Land is actually a small-scale amusement park that has attractions such as go-caring and Ferris wheel. Other than the two observation decks, many of the attractions in the park also provide you with a wonderful view of Amanohashidate.

Although there are a restaurant and a cafe in the park, there is no completely vegetarian menu as the broth of their udon contains bonito extracts.

Hiryūkan-Kairō (飛龍観回廊)

Photo from 海の京都DMO

The view of Amanohashidate from Amanohashidate View Land is called Hiryūkan (飛龍観) because the sandbar looks like a dragon flying to the heaven as the shape is more winding.

The Hiryūkan-Kairō or Flying Dragon Corridor that has a total length of 250 metres was built to imaging the dragon-like Amanohashidate. You get to adorn the breathtaking scenery from various angles from the platform.

On a day with strong wind or in winter when it snows, this platform will be closed for your safety.

One thing to note is, don’t wear skirts or dresses on the platform unless you want to give people underneath the chance of knowing the colour of your underwear.

Tips: You might want to bring binoculars if you have one.

Amanohashidate View Land’s Mata-nozoki Platform (股のぞき台)

To see the sandbar like a Bridge to Heaven, you inevitably have to bend down and be in the position in the photo. No matter how funny the position might seem to the passer-by, it is one of the things that you do to enjoy Amanohashidate!

Just be careful when you try to return to your normal position. Depending on how long you are putting your head in between your legs, there might be a lot of blood rushing back down when you come back up which will give you some dizzy spells.

Photo from photo-ac.com

Click HERE to get back to a list of attractions in Amanohashidate.

Chionji Temple (智恩寺)

Photo from 海の京都DMO

Chionji Temple is ranked first of the three temples in Japan dedicated to the Bodhisattva Monju (文殊菩薩). It is the third closest attraction to Amanohashidate Station.

The Bodhisattva Monju is known as the bodhisattva who has the most wisdom. So many objects including food on the temple’s ground and the surrounding area have “wisdom” in its name. For example, the wisdom pine or even the wisdom mochi/rice cake.

And because the Bodhisattva Monju is enshrined here, many pilgrims come here to pray for more wisdom and academic success.

In front of the worship hall, you will find a round stoup for gargling and purifying your hands. The stoup was actually the temple’s monk’s bathtub centuries ago. It is currently one of the few Japan’s National Cultural Properties that you actually get to use!

Chionji Temple’s Main Gate

Being just a four minutes’ walk away from the station, you can cut the travel time even shorter by entering the temple from its side gate at the temple’s car park that will lead you straight to the temple’s worship hall.

If you entered the temple from its side gate, we would recommend you to leave the temple from its main gate instead of exiting it from another side gate at the other end. The gate is Kyoto Prefecture’s cultural property and was named Ōgonkaku (黄金閣) meaning golden pavilion, commemorating the gold received from one of the Japanese emperors.

The two-storied Ōgonkaku isn’t just a gate but has a worship hall on its second floor enshrining the Gautama Buddha and the 16 Arhats at his sides.

Photo from Tango Kairiku Kotsu

Chionji Temple’s Fortune Slips

Photo from 海の京都DMO

The most interesting thing about Chionji Temple is probably the fortune slips here. Although the fan-shaped fortune slips are just too cute to not take them home, it is better if you tie them up on either the pine tree if your slip is predicting good fortune or the cedar if the content on the slip isn’t favourable.

And make sure you tie your slip on the right tree. The pronunciation of pine is “matsu”, the same as expecting. And for cedar, it is pronounced as “sugi”, which is the same as “past”.

So you really don’t want to tie your upcoming good fortune to a tree that symbolises the past or bad fortune to a tree with a name pronounces the same as expecting.

Mochi of Wisdom (智恵の餅)

Close to Chionji Temple’s main gate, there are four tea houses that are selling the local specialty – Chie no Mochi (智恵の餅) or rice cake of wisdom.

The rice cake covered with red bean paste was originated by an old lady selling it to Chionji Temple’s pilgrims. With a catchphrase that you will get wisdom by eating it, it remains a popular souvenir in the area.

Photo from 海の京都DMO

Chionji Temple’s Opening Hours and Acces Information

  • Chionjit Temple is opened from 8 am to 5 pm

Click HERE to get back to a list of attractions in Amanohashidate.

Chienowa Stone Lantern (智恵の輪石灯籠) and the Rotating Bridge (廻旋橋)

Before you set your feet on Amanohashidate, check out two of the popular photo spots in the area. You can get to them by exiting Chionji Temple through the side gate facing the sea.

Apparently, in the past along the waterway, the Chienowa stone lantern was originally installed to ensure a safe sailing of the ships coming close to the shore.

It is now a monument relating to Chionji Temple that you will be blessed with wisdom if you manage to pass through the lantern three times. Note that this excludes inserting your body through the ring. So whether the blessing will come or not, after you figure out your own way of doing it, we are sure you would have been a wiser person compared to before.

Photo from Tango Kairiku Kotsu

The red bridge with the pine trees at the sides is really a great spot for some photos full of the Japanese traditional atmosphere. And if you are lucky enough, you might just be on the bridge when it starts to make a rotation to allow ships to enter the waterway on the other side of Amanohashidate.

Photo from 海の京都DMO

Click HERE to get back to a list of attractions in Amanohashidate.

Amanohashidate Beach (天橋立海水浴場)

Photo from 海の京都DMO

Just a 7 minutes’ walk away from Amanohashidate Station, the Amanohashidate Beach is especially popular with families with young kids. The beach that is opened from late July to mid-August is there for you to enjoy all sorts of beach activities.

Essential facilities such as change rooms, shower facilities with warm water, toilets, first aid room, and cafes are all available for you to utilise when needed.

If you are driving, there are car parks close by but note you will have a hard time securing a car space for you if you arrive from late morning onwards on weekends and public holidays.

Click HERE to get back to a list of attractions in Amanohashidate.

Amanohashidate Shrine (天橋立神社)

Photo from 海の京都DMO

Going north from Amanohashidate Beach, you will soon find this shrine in the pine forest. The shrine that is said will fulfill your prayers relating to romantic relationships belongs to Chionji Temple (a temple dedicated to the Manju Bodhisattva just south of Amanohashidate).

Isoshimizu (磯清水)

The most amazing thing about the shrine is this well called Isoshimizu.

Locating in the middle of the sea, the water coming out of the well is surprisingly not salty at all. This is why the spot was chosen to be one of the 100 Selection Japan’s Famous Water Source (日本名水百選) and the reason why pine trees can grow on the sandbar.

The water is actually a layer of rainwater stored underground. So if you want to drink it, it is recommended that you boil it first just in case.

Photo from 海の京都DMO

Click HERE to get back to a list of attractions in Amanohashidate.

Amanohashidate Fuchū Beach (天橋立府中海水浴場) and Amanohashidate Activity Center (天橋立アクティビティセンター)

Photo from 海の京都DMO

The beach at the northern part of Amanohashidate that is also opened from late July to mid-August is called Amanohashidate Fuchū Beach.

For those who want to do SUP and/or sea kayaking, this is the beach you want to be at. The Amanohashidate Activity Center that has all the equipment you will need is just next to the beach. Even if you don’t have any experience, they have well-trained instructors who can guide you throughout the session.

Note that pre-school children won’t be able to participate in either of the activities. And if you don’t feel well, don’t force yourself to participate either because they won’t accept you as well.

Activities’ Pricing and Reservation

  • SUP
    • 3,000 yen for adults, 2,000 yen for primary school students
    • 2 sessions, one at 7 am, one at 4:30 pm
    • Eash session lasts for 60 minutes including introduction
    • If you would like to do it during the day, feel free to check with them their availability
  • Sea Kayak
    • 6,000 yen for adults, 4,000 yen for primary school students
    • 2 sessions, one at 9:30 am, one at 1:30 pm
    • Eash session lasts for 120 minutes including introduction
    • There are also two 60 minutes session held at 7 am and 4:30 pm. The cost is 4,000 yen for adults, 3,000 yen for primary school students

Photo from 海の京都DMO

During your session, they will also help you take photos.

To make a reservation, you can either book online on their Japanese website or give them a call at +81-90-9047-5896. If you check the below links through Google Chrome, the browser should be able to translate the page to English for you by clicking the Google Translate icon at the right-hand side of the address bar.

Important: Please note cancellation fees apply if you cancel within 5 days of your booked session. If they have extra capacity, they will also take walk-in customers.

Amanohashidate Activity Center’s Business Hours and Access Information

  • The centre is opened from 9 am to 6 pm
  • From Amanohashidate Station, it is a 35 mins’ walk
  • From Kasamatsu Park, it is a 15 mins’ walk
  • If you are taking a bus from Amanohashidate Station, get off at Amanohashidate Kono Jinja Shrine (天橋立元伊勢籠神社)
    • Refer to HERE for the timetable
  • If you are taking the sightseeing boat, Motoise Kono Shrine is just a min’s walk from Ichinomiya Ferry Terminal
    • Refer to HERE for the timetable
    • From the ferry terminal, it is around a 3 mins’ walk

Click HERE to get back to a list of attractions in Amanohashidate.

Motoise Kono Shrine (元伊勢籠神社)

If you are trekking or cycling your way to the north of Amanohashidate, before you get to Amanohashidate Kasamatsu Park that has a couple of observatories to overlook the sandbar, you will go past through the Motoise Kono Shrine.

The shrine is the highest ranked shrine in the San-in area and was the home of the god in the famous Ise Jingū (伊勢神宮) in Mie Prefecture. This is why the shrine is called “Motoise”.

It is said that Amanohashidate itself was originally the approach to the Kono Shrine, and the region’s name – Miyazu (宮津) means the port where the large shrine is located (the Motoise Kono Shrine in this case).

Photo from Tango Kairiku Kotsu
Photo from 海の京都DMO

If you pay attention to the balustrade of the main worship hall, you will notice it is decorated with balls of five different colours. Known as “Suedama (座玉)”, the balls symbolise the high rank of the shrine and the only other place that you can find this type of decoration is at Ise Jingū (伊勢神宮).

The shrine that has a long history also has quite a few National Important Cultural Properties.

Like the two Komainu (狛犬) or guardian dogs statues in front of the worship hall that were made in the Kamakura period (1192 – 1133), they got the protection of the roof from severe weather conditions such as heavy snow in winter.

Photo from Tango Kairiku Kotsu

Manai Shrine (眞名井神社)

Manai Shrine is the rear shrine of Motoise Kono Shrine. At the back of the worship hall, you will find two giant stones called Iwakura (磐座). They are the true appearance of the god of the shrine (or should we say the object of worship).

In ancient times, when there was no shrine built to worship gods, people thought that gods would come down from heaven and reside in natural things such as large trees and rocks, and connect the world of gods with the world of people.

Photo from Tango Kairiku Kotsu

Photo from Tango Kairiku Kotsu

It is also the shrine where you want to go with an empty water bottle because people around the country would travel their way to Amanohashidate for the sacred water!

In front of the Manai Shrine’s torii gate, there is water coming out of another giant rock. The name of the shrine actually came from this water fountain. It is said that the sacred water is brought down from heaven in a golden bowl by the god, and “Manai” is the honourific title given to spring.

Also, another rare thing at the two sides of the shrine’s torii gate is the guardian animal. Instead of the normal dogs/lions, Manai Shrine has got two dragons!

Sabō Kamunagara (茶房 かむながら)

In between Motoise Kono Shrine’s two torii gates, inside the traditional Japanese building is the shrine’s tea house. It is a great place to enjoy some traditional sweets and a cup of freshly made matcha green tea with premium matcha powder!

Motoise Kono Shrine’s Opening Hours and Access Information

  • Motoise Kono Shrine is opened from 7:30 am to 4:30 pm with the shrine’s office opened from 9 am. Note the opening hours differ from the 31st of Dec to the 3rd of Jan
  • If you are taking a bus from Amanohashidate Station, get off at Amanohashidate Kono Jinja Shrine (天橋立元伊勢籠神社)
    • The bus trip takes around 25 mins
    • Refer to HERE for the timetable
  • If you are taking the sightseeing boat, Motoise Kono Shrine is just a min’s walk from Ichinomiya Ferry Terminal
    • Refer to HERE for the timetable
    • From the ferry terminal, it is around a 3 mins’ walk

Tips: If you like birds and are visiting Amanohashidate from late November to mid-March, there might be Tundra swans around the Ichinomiya Ferry Terminal. So keep an eye out for them!

Click HERE to get back to a list of attractions in Amanohashidate.

Amanohashidate Kasamatsu Park (天橋立傘松公園)

Photo from 海の京都DMO

Amanohashidate Kasamatsu Park is where you discover another face of Amanohashidate. The view from here is called Shōryū-kan (昇龍観), meaning ascending dragon.

Comparing to Amanohashidate View Land, Kasamatsu Park is probably a better place for natural scenery. On the way to the top of the mountain, the surrounding is covered by the cherry blossom in spring and bright coloured leaves in autumn.

And if you are after the rare snowy scenery in the photo, your best chances are between late January to early February. Whilst the snow season starts somewhere in December, the pine trees probably won’t be covered by snow at the beginning of winter.

Cable Car and Chairlift at Amanohashidate Kasamatsu Park

Similar to Amanohashidate View Land, there are two modes of transportation, cable car, and chairlift. The only difference is, you can hike your way up which takes around 50 minutes.

And the same as Amanohashidate View Land, cable car up and chairlift down!

For opening hours and ticket information, please refer to Tango Kairiku Kōtsū (丹後海陸交通)’s website HERE.

Photo from 海の京都DMO

Amanohashidate Kasamatsu Park’s Mata-nozoki Platform (股のぞき台)

Photo from 海の京都DMO

And here is another platform for you to perform the amusing pose.

Apparently, here is the first place where people start viewing Amanohashidate this way (≧▽≦).

Apart from the platform, there are also a few other observatory areas and activities that you might want to give a go in the park. Cafe and restaurant are also there if you ever feel hungry albeit there is no vegetarian menu.

Photo from Tango Kairiku Kotsu
Photo from Tango Kairiku Kotsu

HERE is a map that will give you some visual idea of what is where. It is in Japanese only but there are photos to help paint the picture. Also, you can translate the page by using the translation function of Google Chrome.

Plate Throwing at Amanohashidate Kasamatsu Park

A fun activity to do at Kasamatsu Park is trying to through the round plates into the ring. It is said that if you manage to do so, something lucky will happen to you (=゚ω゚)ノ.

It is actually a lot harder than it might seem, so when you actually did it, you will get a large cheering from your audience!

Photo from Tango Kairiku Kotsu

How to Get to Amanohashidate Kasamatsu Park

To get to the park other than walking/biking, you can also take Tankai Bus or Amanohashidate Sightseeing Boat.

  • Tankai Bus: board the bus from Amanohashidate Station (天橋立駅) and get off at Amanohashidate Cable-sita (天橋立ケーブル下). There are a couple of bus routes that will stop at both bus stops.
    • Please refer to HERE for the timetable
    • The cable car/chairlift station is just a 3 mins’ walk away from the bus stop
  • Amanohashidate Sightseeing Boat: board the boat from Amanohashidate Pier (天橋立桟橋) and get off at Ichinomiya Ferry Terminal (一の宮桟橋)
    • Please refer to HERE for the timetable
    • The cable car/chairlift station is less than a 5 mins’ walk away from the ferry terminal
    • Do expect some upward slope from the pier

Click HERE to get back to a list of attractions in Amanohashidate.

Nariaiji Temple (成相寺)

From the side of Amanohashidate Ksamatsu Park, you can catch the Nariai Mountaineering Bus (成相寺登山バス) to get to the 28th temple of the 33 Saigoku Kannon Pilgrimage – Nariaii Temple.

Of course, instead of a 7 minutes’ bus trip, you can hike your way up. But just note the road is quite steep.

Photo from Tango Kairiku
Photo from Tango Kairiku Kotsu

The temple that has a long history was founded in 704. After the five-story pagoda was restored in 2000, it is one of the not too many places in Japan where you can adorn the Kamakura-style building.

Nariaiji temple is one of the most scenic places around Amanohashidate throughout the year, especially in the autumn foliage season from early to mid-November. Locating further up from Kasamatsu Park, apart from the beautiful autumn foliage, you might be able to see the fantastic sea of clouds scenery from its observation deck in the early morning.

Mt. Nariai Panoramic Overlook

Note that to get to Mt. Nariai Panoramic Overlook for a magnificent view of Amanohashidate, you have to hike your way up for around 15 minutes. There is a cafe next to the lookout perfect for you to rest at.

Also, if you are after the sea of cloud scenery, we would recommend you to drive your way up in the early morning if not at dawn (taking a taxi is another option). This is so to increase your chance of catching the breathtaking scenery as the fog/cloud will disappear as the temperature increases slowly after sunrise.

Photo from Tango Kairiku Kotsu

Nariaiji Temple’s Opening Hours, Admission Fees, and Location

  • Nariaiji Temple is opened from 8 am to 4:30 pm
  • The admission fee is
    • 500 yen for adults
    • 200 yen for middle and high school students
    • Free otherwise
  • Refer to Tango Kairiku Kōtsu’s website HERE for information regarding Nariai Mountaineering Bus

Tips: Depending on how you plan to explore the area north of Amanohashidate, choose one of the SPECIAL TICKET DEALS to save. The information is currently not available on Kairiku Kōtsu’s English website so open the link in Google Chrome and get it translated to English by switching the language by clicking the Google Translate Icon at the right of the address bar.

Click HERE to get back to a list of attractions in Amanohashidate.

Events, Festivals, Cherry Blossom and Autumn Foliage Season at Amanohashidate

For a list of current and upcoming events and festivals, please refer to the official website HERE. You can also refer to their event calendar HERE.

  • The cherry blossom season at Amanohashidate is usually from early to mid-April
  • The autumn foliage season usually peaks from mid-November and can last till early December in some years
Photo from 海の京都DMO

Discover the Charm of Kyoto’s Summer Resort – Kurama and Kibune

Kibune-Kawadoko-Ryori-Kyoto-Japan
Click the photo to find out more about Kurama and Kibune!

The Kurama and Kibune area is the perfect place to escape the summer heat in Kyoto city centre. Up in the mountain, and enjoying Japanese cuisine on the platform above the river, and visiting the famous Kurama-dera Temple and Kifune Shrine is one the best way to enjoy Kyoto’s summer!

For more information, please refer to our article on Kurama and Kibune!

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