For Tohoku First-timers

Southern Tohoku Highlight Course using the JR pass4 nights, 5 days

A trip in Tohoku is a trip where you get to know the people and its culture. The Highlight Course is recommended for those coming to Tohoku for the first time where you can make good time visiting all the recommended locations. This plan will take you around the must-go places for sightseeing in Hiraizumi and Matsushima where you can enjoy an aquarium, shopping and various hands-on activities.

  • IWATE
  • MIYAGI
  • FUKUSHIMA
9:50

Depart from Tokyo Station

about 130 minutes
(JR Joban Line)
12:00

Depart from Izumi Station

about 20 minutes
(Bus)
12:30

Lunch and shopping in Iwaki Lalamew

A sea and fish themed park!
A tourist center whose theme is “all things good in Iwaki are here.” In addition to a fish area where you can purchase seafood delivered directly from all over Japan in an auction market style, there are also 6 other zones which include restaurants and a souvenir corner. Moreover, in addition to the informational corner which teaches visitors about Iwake, there is also a large tour boat cruise available that cruises around Onahama Bay. A tourist center whose theme is “all things good in Iwaki are here.” In addition to a fish area where you can purchase seafood delivered directly from all over Japan in an auction market style, there are also 6 other zones which include restaurants and a souvenir corner. Moreover, in addition to the informational corner which teaches visitors about Iwake, there is also a large tour boat cruise available that cruises around Onahama Bay.
Phone
0246-92-3701
FAX
0246-92-3147
Hours open to visitors
Fish zone & goods zone: 9AM-6PM, Dining zone & restaurants: 10AM-6PM, Onahama Tour Boat Iwaki Day Cruise: 10AM-3PM (until 2PM on weekdays)
Closed
Undecided
Fee
Free entry, Onahama Boat Cruise: Adults: 1,800 yen
URL
http://www.lalamew.jp/

Iwaki Day Cruise

A cruise boat that goes around Onahama Port. Why don't you go out on a small cruise?

about 5 minutes
(By foot)
14:00

Tour Aquamarine Fukushima

An aquarium that lets you get closer to nature
An aquarium exhibiting approximately 130,000 creatures belonging to 800 different species. In large tank which stretches from the 2nd to 4th floor, visitors can see Japanese sardine and skipjack tuna swimming around with incredible force. In addition to the tropical Asia section, there are large mammals such as sea lions, the deep sea creature corner as well as the popular “Seas of Coral Reef” corner which has exhibits containing the Spotted Garden Eel.
Phone
0246-73-2525
FAX
0246-73-2526
Hours open to visitors
9AM-5:30PM (last entry 1 hour before close) *Depends on season
Closed
No holidays
Fee
Adults: 1,800 yen, Primary to high school: 900 yen, Preschoolers: Free
URL
http://www.aquamarine.or.jp/

Activities in Janome Beach

A variety of experiences available such as fishing, charcoal grilling and feeding the animals.

about 20 minutes
(Taxi)
16:00

Tour the Iwaki City Coal and Fossil Museum

A combined coal and fossil facility
Introduces Japanese industrial promotion and the long history of coal fields which assisted in Japan's modernization as well as the fossil materials uncovered in Iwaki and other countries Consists popular exhibits such as the representative fossil of Japan, the Futabasaurus suzukii, tunnels made to simulate what coal mining is like, giving visitors a sense of the scale. There are also workshops available where participants can make ammonite samples using real fossils.
Phone
0246-42-3155
FAX
0246-42-3157
Hours open to visitors
9:30AM-5PM (last entry at 4:30PM)
Closed
3rd Thursday (on day following national holiday, comensatory holiday, no holidays in August)
Fee
Adults: 650 yen, Middle/High/University students: 340 yen, Primary school students: 320 yen
URL
http://www.sekitankasekikan.or.jp/
about 38 minutes
(JR Joban Line)

Stay in Iwaki

Hula Girls

Hula Girls perform every day at the Spa Resort Hawaiians. You must go see the perfomance!

10:00

Depart from Iwaki

10:30

Tomato picking and lunch in Wonder Farm

A tomato-themed park!
A farming and food experience farm taking on a tomato-based theme. In addition tomato picking on a large farm, those who visit the farm can enjoy a buffet with freshly picked vegetables, barbecue in an open plaza, ride the talked about vehicle of the future, the “In Motion” Segway device, and experience “wonder” farming. There are also plenty of products made from tomatoes that are great for souvenirs available.
Phone
0246-38-8851
FAX
0246-85-5106
Hours open to visitors
Tomato Picking: Saturday, Sunday, national holiday from 10AM, 5 times a day *Depends on facility, program
Closed
Depends on facility and program
Fee
Tomato picking: 800 yen *Depends on program
URL
http://www.wonder-farm.co.jp/
13:00

Depart from Iwaki Station

14:50

Koriyama Station → Sendai Station

15:40

Stay in Sendai

Try Sendai's famous beef tongue!

You must have the grilled beef tongue in Sendai. Many of the restaurants serve this dish so you better check it out!

10:00

Depart from Sendai City

①Sightseeing in Sendai
about 15 minutes
(Loople Sendai)
10:20

Walk the Sendai(Aoba) Castle ruins

Date Masamune's statue watches over the town
The castle ruins of Date Masamune, one of the Sengoku feudal lords that ruled over Sendai 400 years ago. The castle itself no longer remains, but the stone wall which have been carefully reconstructed helps to preserve those ancient times. A statue of Date Masamune riding a horse stands in the inner citadel ruins where you can catch the perfect view of the stores and houses located in Sendai's city center. Use Sendai's tourist city loop bus, “Loople Sendai,” as a convenient way to get around.

Lord Date Statue

Located on the ruins of Sendai Castle. Take a picture together if you're lucky!

about 40 minutes
(Bus Transfer)
12:00

Tour the Sendai Umino-Mori Aquarium

Encounter the many creatures of the sea!
An aquarium with approximately 100 tanks covering a space of 9,000m2 displaying some of the world's as well as Japan's fascinating and unique creatures. This aquarium is filled with plenty of things to see and do such as the giant tank that recreates the habitat of the sea of Sanriku, interacting with penguins and South American sea lions. There is also and dolphin and seal performances. The Backyard Tour where you get to explore the back areas with the aquarium's caretakers is also popular among visitors.
Phone
022-355-2222
FAX
022-355-2225
Hours open to visitors
9AM-last entry at 6:00PM *Depends on season
Closed
No holidays
Fee
Adults: 2,100 yen
URL
http://www.uminomori.jp/
about 10 minutes
(By foot)
14:00

Shopping at Mitsui Outlet Park Sendai Port

about 20 minutes
(Bus)
16:00

Tour the Sendai Anpanman Kids Museum and mall

Stay in Sendai

②Sendai City Reconstruction Tour
about 15 minutes
(Subway)
10:20

Sendai 3.11 Memorial Community Center

Memories of the earthquake to the future, to the world
In addition to being a location to learn about the Great East Japan Earthquake, it also acts as an entrance to the eastern coastal region of Sendai which was hit hard by the tsunami. In addition to permanent exhibits that teach visitors about the damage inflicted by the earthquake and the current state of restoration to the area, exhibits which demonstrate the damage through how those in the region live and their memories, there are also workshops where you can have a chance to discuss the disaster caused by the earthquake as well as field tours where participants will visit the surrounding areas.
Phone
022-390-9022
FAX
022-353-5710
Hours open to visitors
10:00~17:00
Closed
Monday (and following day of national holiday except Saturdays, Sundays and national holidays)
Fee
Free to tour
URL
http://sendai311-memorial.jp/
http://sendai311-memorial.jp/wp/wp-content/uploads/2017/10/smcc_3ori2-170916-SGR.pdf
about 15 minutes
(Bus)
12:00

Earthquake Ruins Sendai Arahama Elementary School

Its appearance left untouched from the damage
Arahama Elementary School, the site which children, teaching staff and local residents fled to at the time of the earthquake and was hit by the tsunami up to the 2nd floor was reopened as a remnant of the earthquake disaster. Photographs and footage are displayed inside the school which show the progress of events from the time the earthquake occurred, evacuation, when the tsunami hit, to the time of rescue, demonstrating the terrible power and threat of the tsunami. Even now, visitors can view the restoration and reconstruction taking place from the roof of the school.
Phone
022-355-8517 (Management office)
FAX
022-355-8517 (Management office)
Hours open to visitors
10AM-4PM
Closed
Monday, 2nd and 4th Thursday (and day following national holiday excluding Saturdays, Sundays, national holidays)
Fee
Free
URL
https://www.city.sendai.jp/kankyo/shisetsu/ruin_arahama_elementaryschool.html
https://www.city.sendai.jp/kankyo/shisetsu/documents/mitsuori_arahamasyo_2.pdf
about 40 minutes
(Bus/Subway)
14:00

Walk around Sendai city

16:00

Stay in Sendai

10:00

Depart from Sendai City

about 40 minutes
(JR Senseki Line)
10:30

Arrive at Matsushima-Kaigan Station

about 10 minutes
(By foot)
11:00

Visit the island on a tour boat cruise in the Matsushima Bay

A must-do if you want to tour Matsushima!
Matsushima, where you can find as many as 260 islands, both large and small. Take the Matsushima Pleasure Boat Round Trip Course, the cruise that will give you the chance to see the beauty of this view up close. This cruise arrives and departs the boarding area located near JR Matsushima Coast Station. The course has various routes that are roughly 50 minutes, cruising around the various uniquely shaped islands such as Futagojima Island and Senganjima Island. “Niojima Island” which is shaped like someone wearing a beret with a cigarette in their mouth is also worth seeing.
Phone
022-354-2233 (Matsushima Island Tour Boat)
022-365-3611 (Marubun Matsushima Kisen)
FAX
022-354-2235 (Matsushima Island Tour Boat)
022-365-3509 (Marubun Matsushima Kisen)
Hours open to visitors
Depends on tour boat company
Closed
No holidays
Fee
Adults: From 1,500 yen
URL
http://www.matsushima.or.jp/ (Matsushima Island Tour Boat)
https://www.marubun-kisen.com/ (Marubun Matsushima Kisen Steamboat)
12:00

Walk along the Matushima Kaigan Avenue

Zuiganji Temple

Family temple constructed by Masamune
The temple of the Date family which Date Masamune took over 5 years time to complete in 1609. Those visiting the temple can see the treasure hall which contains reproductions of magnificent paintings considered national treasures that decorate each of the rooms inside the temple, and documents related to the Date family. English tours of the grounds are also available on Sundays and national holidays.
Phone
022-354-2023
FAX
022-354-5145
Hours open to visitors
9AM-5PM (last entry 1 hour before close) *Depends on season
Fee
Adults: 700 yen
URL
http://www.zuiganji.or.jp/

Oyster curry bread in the Matsushima Tamatebako-kan

The harmony between the whole oysters and curry is out of this world. A popular dish in Matsushima.

Godaido

Symbol of Matsushima rebuilt by Masamune
A temple which was rebuilt by Date Masamune, and acts almost as a landmark of Matsushima Island. The statues of the five great wisdom kings installed there are usually hidden but revealed once every 33 years. Twelve animals are carved into the four sides of the temple. To get to the small island with the Godaido Temple, you will cross an open-floored bridge painted in a vermilion color that goes over the transparent sea below.
Phone
022-354-2023 (Zuiganji Temple)
FAX
022-354-5145 (Zuiganji Temple)
Hours open to visitors
8AM-5PM *Depends on season
Fee
Free to visit
URL
http://www.zuiganji.or.jp/keidai/godaidou.html

Homemade Sasa Kama Experience

You can experience grilling your own sasa kama while viewing the Godaido Temple. 1 for 200 yen.

Entsu-in Temple Prayer Bead Making Experience

Admire the beauty of nature in a zen temple
Opened as a mausoleum to Date Mitsumune, grandson of Date Masamune, a feudal lord of Sendai. Located here is “Sankeiden,” Miyako Prefectures oldest mausoleum, nationally designated as an Important Cultural Asset, and you can enjoy the appearance of the four seasons such as the light-up event to celebrate the changing colors of the leaves in the fall carried out in the moss-covered Japanese garden. You can find on the left-hand side of the temple gate a “Marriage Kannon” which brings good luck to a couple's marriage as well as many lined-up marriage “Kokeshi” wooden dolls. You can also experience making prayer beads using beads of your choice.
Phone
022-354-3206
FAX
022-354-5447
Hours open to visitors
8:30AM-5PM (last entry 30 minutes before close) *Depends on season
Fee
Adults: 300 yen
URL
http://www.entuuin.or.jp/
17:00

Stay at the Matsushima Hot Springs

A hot spring beach resort city
Matsushima Hot Springs, which is nicknamed the “Hot Spring of Beauty,” that leaves your skin feeling smooth. There are seven hot spring hotels available, all with their own way to attract guests such as guest rooms with an ocean view and meals that come with plenty of the sea's fresh harvest. Since Matsushima has been chosen as one of Japan's top 100 spots for viewing the moon, we especially recommend soaking in the open air bath while gazing at the moon over Matsushima Bay.
Phone
022-354-4111 (Office: Matsushima Century Hotel)
FAX
022-354-4191 (Office: Matsushima Century Hotel)
Fee
Lodging fee depends on facility
URL
http://www.matsushima-onsen.com/
10:00

Depart from Matsushima-Kaigan Station

about 105 minutes
(Direct Bus)
12:00

Lunch at Hirazumi Chusonji Temple Rest House

about 10 minutes
(By foot)
13:00

Chusonji Temple Konjikido Temple

14:00

Motsu-ji Temple

15:50

Depart from Hiraizumi Chuson-ji Tempple Rest House

about 10 minutes
(Charter Bus)
16:20

Depart from Hiraizumi Station

about 10 minutes
(JR Tohoku Main Line)
16:50

Depart from Ichinoseki Station
(to Sendai Station or Tokyo Station)

  • AOMORI
  • IWATE
  • MIYAGI
  • FUKUSHIMA

The want-it-all plan which takes you around to all of the coasts along the Pacific Ocean in Tohoku. Grab the steering wheel and see the beautiful landscapes on the coastline in no time. Interact with the locals, enjoy delicious gourmet seafood, watch the morning sun rise over the ocean horizon. An unforgettable trip both with loved ones and friends.

  • AOMORI

Trek along the Tanesashi Coast which is said to be a treasure trove of beautiful scenic views. Feed the black-tailed gulls, view the alpine plant life, eat Japanese food. Take a relaxing walk along the beautiful coastline!

  • IWATE

This ever-changing coastline is almost like something you would see in a painting. A newly famous trekking area where you can enjoy the beautiful rias coastline right in front of you!

  • AOMORI
  • IWATE

The Tohoku Journey is a trip which brings you in contact with the people of Tohoku and its culture. We recommend the Highlight Course which efficiently hits all the recommended spots for those coming to Tohoku for the first time. This is a packed plan that will take you around to the shopping alleys and morning markets of Hachinohe and the local train lines as well as touring around places such as the Tanesashi Coast, Kitayamazaki Cliffs, and Jodogahama.

  • IWATE

We will not lose against this tsunami. A reconstruction tour where you get the chance to see the reconstruction and the cities that continue pushing forward to the future following the Great East Japan Earthquake, and how those in the area live currently. The fact that this is an area which cannot be seen anywhere else in the world is what makes this trip so special.

  • MIYAGI

We will not lose against this tsunami. A reconstruction tour where you get the chance to see the reconstruction and the cities that continue pushing forward to the future following the Great East Japan Earthquake, and how those in the area live currently. The fact that this is an area which cannot be seen anywhere else in the world is what makes this trip so special.