Proceeding north of the Chirihama Beach Driveway, you will enter a region of countless strange rocks and cliffs extending for about 30 kilometers. The scenery here is as stunning as Mt. Kongou (Kumgang, 金剛山) in North Korea, which is why it is named Noto Kongō (能登金剛).
The most representative thing of the Noto Kongō is a 15-meter tall and 6-meter wide cave called Gammon (巌門) at the middle point of the coast.
The penetration cave created by erosion on the bedrock over a long time can be enjoyed either by foot or by boarding a sightseeing boat.
Gammon (巌門) and the Sightseeing Boat
To get to Gammon, the fastest way is to park your car at Noto Kongō Center’s (能登金剛センター) free car park. From there, it is a 3-minute downhill walk with a great Sea of Japan view.
Tip: Whilst most parts of the promenade are all well-maintained, the area around Gammon is rocky and slippery. So, bringing a pair of aqua shoes will be really handy. Or, a pair of good sneakers with good grips should also suffice.
Before trekking downwards, check to see if you have enough cash to pay for the 1,200 yen for your boat ticket.
If you don’t have enough cash or prefer to pay by credit card, ensure you get your boat ticket from Noto Kongō Center first.
Tip: Come here in the morning for better lighting for a better view of Gammon from the shore. The cave has a depth of 60 meters. With the afternoon lighting coming from the sea, it will be quite dark at the landside of the cave.
The promenade goes through the tunnel at the right of Gammon. While it isn’t displayed in the photo above, there are clear directory signs to guide you all the way to the sightseeing boat pier. As long as the boat is parking at the pier and there is more than one guest, the boat should depart as soon as you arrive.
The Ganmon Cruise Trip
The boat tour usually takes around 20 minutes. It is the best way to enjoy Noto Kongō. Not only will you be super close to the cave from the seaside, but it will also tour around other iconic rocks and cliffs along the 30-meter coast in the west of the peninsula. You will even be able to see Japan’s oldest wooden lighthouse – Old Fukuura Lighthouse (旧福浦灯台)!
Important: As the waves can be rough, if you tend to get travel sickness, having your medication with you may be better.
Tip: The lighting is the best for the sightseeing boat in the afternoon. As there are two boarding points for the sightseeing boat, we recommend arriving at Noto Kongō Center in the late morning and enjoying trekking at this part of the coast. Then in the afternoon, drive to and park your car at the Tabinoeki Ganmon Yūransen Information Center (旅の駅 巌門 遊覧船案内所). The pier is also a 3-minute downhill walk from the information center. It is where you can get your boat ticket with card payments as well.
Important: Please note it could be hard to find a vegetarian menu at the restaurants around Gammon. Consider bringing a bento box if you don’t take non-vegetarian broth.
Gammon Sightseeing Boat’s Operating Hours and Boatfare
- The boat is operating from 8 am to 4 pm from mid-March to mid-November
- It costs
- 1,200 yen for adults
- 600 yen for elementary school students to board
- Free for Younger won’t be charged
Shiawase-no-Ganmon Bridge (幸せのがんもん橋)
Close to the Tabinoeki Ganmon Yūransen Information Center, there is a suspension bridge in between two cliffs. Don’t miss out on the great view as you cross the bridge!
The promenade on this side of the coast also has a few lookouts for some beautiful photoshoots.
How to Get to Gammon with Public Transport
From JR Hakui Station (羽咋駅), take Hokutetsu Noto Bus (北鉄能登バス) bound for Togi (富来) and get off at Ushioroshi (牛下). Both of the sightseeing boat’s pier is just a 20-minute walk away.
For the bus service’s timetable, please refer to Keta Grand Shrine’s access information.
Discover Other Awesome Attractions in Noto Penisula
Looking forward to visiting Chirihama Beach Driveway during your next Japan trip? The beach is only one of the many fascinating attractions on Noto Penisula.
For more attractions you may be interested in, refer to our article on Noto Penisula!