Besides seeing Ine‘s unique Funayas by taking the Ine Bay Sightseeing Ferry, there is another way to adore the town’s rural scenery. The view from the Roadside Station Funayanosato Ine (道の駅 舟屋の里伊根) is the most spectacular in the area, and it doesn’t cost you anything to enjoy it!
Table of Contents
- How to Get to Roadside Station Funayanosato Ine
- On the Way to Roadside Station Funayanosato Ine
- The View from the Roadside Station Funayanosato Ine
How to Get to Roadside Station Funayanosato Ine
After we got to Ine, we checked with the staff at Ine Town Information Center about the recommended attractions. One of the attractions they mentioned was Roadside Station Funayanosato Ine. They said we can get a different view of the Funayas from there, but they also warned us about the required effort to get there. Hundreds of staircases continue to the top of the hill!
While it sounded daunting, we still decided to head there the next morning. We could just treat it as a morning exercise before breakfast.
One of the few advantages of Google Maps not having complete road information is that it might recommend an easier route to get to your destination. Because the stairs leading to the Roadside Station Funayanosato Ine are not shown on Google Maps, it recommended a motor road through a tunnel. So while walking through the sidewalk in the long and dim tunnel was a bit scary, the end result was fabulous!
Tip: The easiest way to get to Roadside Station Funayanosato Ine is: from the bus stop, Ine, follow the road where the bus stop stands and head north. Turn right at the first intersection and keep walking. You should get to the entrance of Hirata Tunnel (平田トンネル) in minutes. Then, make another right turn at the first intersection on the other end of the tunnel. Follow the road, and you will arrive at the roadside station in 5 minutes.
As you can see in the photo, the road on the right is flat and easy to walk on. On your way back, you can take the stairs on the left under the shade. It will lead you to a road along the coast.
On the Way to Roadside Station Funayanosato Ine
If you take our advice and take the flatter route, a set of short wooden stairs leads to a small lookout once you pass the parking lot close to the tunnel. Compared to the view from the roadside station, this lookout offers a closer view of the Funayas.
There is also a large sundial behind the lookout (the 2nd photo in the IG post). It isn’t accurate though. We arrived around 7:30 am, but the shade was between 8 and 9 am.
Nonetheless, it is a spot that you can stop by on the way to the roadside station.
The View from the Roadside Station Funayanosato Ine
From the Funaya area, it takes around 20 minutes to get to the roadside station.
On a sunny day, your effort in making your way up will certainly not be wasted once you reach the observatory at the back of the roadside station. The view of the Ine Bay and the Funayasis is absolutely stunning!
If you come at dawn, the scenery is even more beautiful, with the sky dyed in orange by the sun appearing from the horizon!
One of the restaurants in the roadside station also has an observation deck. If you visit it during its business hours, remember to check it out!
Roadside Station Funayanosato Ine’s Opening Hours and Access Information
- The observatory is accessible 24/7.
- The roadside station is open from 9 am to 5 pm except for Tuesdays.
- While there are restaurants around, unfortunately there are no vegetarian menus.
- You can also take a bus from the town center and get off at Michinoeki Funayanosato Ine (道の駅 舟屋の里伊根). Please refer to HERE for the timetable.
Yellowtail’s Monument (ブリとタイのモニュメント)
Roadside Station Funayanosato Ine isn’t at the highest point of the low mountain. You can walk up to where the yellowtail’s monument is in the IG post. The stairs are well-maintained and are easy to walk on. The second photo in the post is the view from the monument.
But that isn’t the end of the promenade. You can climb further up for an even wider view of Ine Bay, as well as mountains emerging from the water. The scenery from there is just breathtaking. And you are likely to have the above stunning view all to yourself!
P.S. The third photo in the IG post was taken on the way to the highest point of the promenade.
Ine Bay (伊根湾)
Now that you have checked out the unique Funaya from the outside, it is time to explore the small fishing town and the internals of the Funayas. If you can understand Japanese or are accompanied by an interpreter, consider booking or joining their guided tour!
For more information on how you can enjoy this fishing village, please refer to our article on Ine Bay!
Visit Amanohashidate for One of the Three Views of Japan
If Ine Bay is on your itinerary and you haven’t been to Amanohashidate, you definitely should. The two destinations go hand in hand!
Check out our article on Amanohashidate to find out why people are bending down over on the observatory and how the 5,000 pine trees can grow on the 3.6 km sandbar surrounded by seawater!