Yamaguchi prefecture is the prefecture which is the westernmost point of Honshu. Yamaguchi Prefecture faces the calm Seto Inland Sea on the south side, while the north side faces the wild Japanese sea. Shinkansen runs in the southern area of this prefecture, but in the north area it is inconvenient to get to. Since there are various areas in this prefecture, please find your favorite tourist spot by all means.
Outline of Yamaguchi
The sightseeing spots in Yamaguchi Prefecture are really varied. If you are planning a trip with Hiroshima prefecture as the main destination, I would recommend going to Kintaikyo Bridge in Iwakuni City, which is close to Hiroshima prefecture. Kintaikyo is a fairly interesting bridge.
If you are interested in nature, I recommend that you go to Akiyoshidai in Misaki. There is the largest limestone cave in Japan.
If you are interested in Japanese history and traditional buildings, I recommend that you go to Hagi city in the northern part of Yamaguchi Prefecture. In the latter half of the nineteenth century, Hagi played an important role when Japan ended the Tokugawa shogunate and accelerated modernization.
Yamaguchi Prefecture has Yamaguchi Ube Airport. At Yamaguchi Ube Airport, scheduled flights are only being operated with Haneda Airport in Tokyo. People who go from Tokyo to Yamaguchi prefecture are a little more likely to use airplanes than Shinkansen. However, if your destination in Yamaguchi Prefecture is far from the airport, it may be faster to use the Shinkansen.
From Yamaguchi Ube Airport it takes 30 minutes by bus to JR Shin Yamaguchi Station. It is approximately 1 hour and 30 minutes by bus to Shimonoseki Station. There are also ways to use trains from Shin Yamaguchi Station to various parts of Yamaguchi Prefecture.
The Sanyo Shinkansen runs in the southern part of Yamaguchi Prefecture. So in the southern area you are relatively easy to move. However, there is no Shinkansen station in the north. Please note that even the number of regular railways is small in the north.
In Yamaguchi prefecture, the Sanyo Shinkansen trains stop at the next 5 stations.
Shin Iwakuni Station
Shin Yamaguchi Station
Shin Shimonoseki Station
Kintaikyo Bridge is a wooden arch bridge installed at the Nishiki River in Iwakuni City. On the Nishiki River (width about 200 meters), four foundations are built. Five wooden arch bridges are installed on these foundations. The bridge is about 5 meters wide and the total length is 193.3 meters. Kintaikyo is famous as a very unique shaped bridge and is crowded with many tourists.
This bridge was built in the 17th century. After that, it has been rebuilt several times. In 1950, it was swept away by the typhoon, but it was rebuilt immediately.
Before this unique bridge was built, it is said that the bridge had been blown several times by the flood. There, long arch bridges were made on solid foundations.
You can get off the river bed and look up at this bridge. Then you can observe the structure of this bridge.
Cherry blossoms bloom in the spring around the Kintai Bridge. Autumn leaves are also beautiful. This bridge reflects the changes in the four seasons, creating beautiful scenery.
Akiyoshidai and Akiyoshido
In the central part of Yamaguchi prefecture there are two amazing places as seen in the above photos.
As seen in the first picture, Akiyoshidai, the plateau with the highest concentration of karst formations in Japan is spreading on the ground.
And, as can be seen in the second picture, Akiyoshido, the largest and longest limestone cave in Japan spread in the basement. You can put it in this cave.
These places have tremendous power. If you are interested in exploring, I recommend that you go to Akiyoshidai and Akiyoshido.
Hagi city is an old town facing the Japan Sea side of Yamaguchi Prefecture. This town was once the center of the Mouri clan (Choshu clan) in the era of the Tokugawa shogunate. Mouri clan played an important role when finishing the Tokugawa shogunate and accelerating modernization. If you go to Hagi, you can see the birthplace of historical figures who left significant achievements in modernizing Japan and related museums.
In the end of the Tokugawa shogunate's era, Hagi was a center that moved Japan's politics. However, the town of Hagi was hardly developed after that. Because this town is surrounded by mountains on three sides, there was a limit to enlarging the town.
Thus, old houses and streets were left in Hagi. So, you can walk the way the samurai walked in the same way. If you are interested in history, I think that Hagi is a very attractive tourist destination.
I appreciate you reading to the end.
Bon KUROSAWA I have long worked as a senior editor for Nihon Keizai Shimbun (NIKKEI) and currently work as an independent web writer. At NIKKEI, I was the editor-in-chief of the media on Japanese culture. Let me introduce a lot of fun and interesting things about Japan. Please refer to this article for more details.