Ehime Prefecture is located in northwestern Shikoku. The northern part of the prefecture is a beautiful area blessed with the 200 islands dotting the Seto Inland Sea and the craggy shoreline facing the Uwakai Sea. One of the bridges connecting the main island of Honshu with Shikoku, the Shimanami Kaido, provides smooth access for Hiroshima, Okayama and other major cities in the Chugoku district. The prefecture is divided into 3 areas including Matsuyama and Uwajima in the central region which is a base for tourism, and the southwestern region.
Two of the twelve remaining castle keeps in Japan are in Ehime at Matsuyama and Uwajima Castles. In Matsuyama, there is the 3000-year-old Dogo Onsen which is one of the 3 ancient hot springs of the nation and Mt. Ishizuchi which is the highest peak in western Japan, and along the Shimanami Kaido, you can enjoy picturesque scenery while cycling in Kirosan Observatory Park. Also within Matsuyama City, the old-fashioned Botchan Railroad and the Tobe Zoological Park of Ehime Prefecture which is one of the foremost zoos in western Japan are popular.
Ehime oranges are famous all over Japan. Other famous dishes include Imabari’s yakibuta tamago-don (fried pork and egg on rice) and yakitori, Yawatahama chanpon and imotaki (boiled sweet potato) stew. The prefecture is also known as a place where oden stew is enjoyed so that it is a dish that is often seen on the menus of udon and ramen restaurants in the area.
From Tokyo, traveling to Ehime by air is common. A flight from Haneda Airport takes 1 hour and 30 minutes to reach Matsuyama Airport. Matsuyama Airport is close to downtown Matsuyama with a limousine bus reaching Matsuyama Station in about 15 minutes while Dogo Onsen can be reached in about just 40 minutes. The city of Matsuyama which includes the Dogo area also has plenty of buses and trolleys traveling around Matsuyama Castle. For travel to other tourist sites, a rental car is convenient.
There are plenty of accommodations in Matsuyama, Dogo, Imabari and Uwajima.