Preserving its nostalgic atmosphere, many writers and film directors have been drawn to this place

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The mountainside has so many temples that it has been called the Little Kyoto of the West, and on the seaside, there is the long and blue Onomichi Channel along with the islands of Seto that center around the Shimanami Kaido…which make for a port town with that nostalgic mood
Onomichi, Higashigoshomachi Onomichi-shi, Hiroshima
(0848) 37-9736

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A town that retains the feeling of old-fashioned Japan

On getting off at Onomichi Station, the calm Seto Inland Sea spreads out in front of your eyes. The Onomichi Channel which is a narrow sea that resembles a river has frequently made appearances in movies and dramas, and is a spot that symbolizes Onomichi. In the background, houses line up on the mountains, and the stone-paved alleyways on the slope that wind around like a maze are close to the areas of commerce so you can feel the nostalgia of an age without cars. There are many ways to enjoy the area whether you stroll on the stone-paved alleyways or cycle on the Shimanami Kaido.

Get a sample of Japanese culture through a tour of the old temples

The streets of Onomichi City are known for their temples for which there is a 3-hour pilgrimage covering 2 km and 25 temples linked by stone-paved roads on the slope. A treasure box of cultural assets, there are temples of varying sizes such as Jodo-ji which has been called a National Treasure; Saikoku-ji which has giant straw sandals festooned on its Niomon gate; Senko-ji, a symbol of Onomichi which stands atop a steep cliff; and Jiko-ji where you can make a squeezed Buddha through clay. There are also other differently-themed courses to enjoy such as a pilgrimage of the Seven Buddhas and a simple leisurely stroll.

Get that feeling of nature by cycling on the Shimanami Kaido

The Setonai Shimanami Kaido which extends for 70km linking Onomichi and the island of Shikoku with Ehime Prefecture is perfect for walking and cycling. There are all sorts of islands and tourist spots such as Mukaishima which has a large cultivation of tropical orchids and other blossoms that make use of the warm climate, Innoshima which was the birthplace of the Murakami Navy with its view of the Seto Inland Sea, and Ikuchijima which is famous for being the original source of domestic lemons and for art through facilities like its art museum.

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