For Tohoku First-timers

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

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.

  • AOMORI
  • IWATE
10:20

Depart from Tokyo Station

about 160 minutes
(JR Shinkansen)
13:00

Leave from Hachinohe Station

about 10 minutes
(100 Yen Bus)
13:30

See the market in Hasshoku Center

Many of Hachinohe's specialties in one place!
Find a large array of “Hachinohe's delicious products,” from some of the most extraordinarily fresh seafood, dried food products, delicacies, all the way to souvenirs. This is a large market place with approximately 60 different shops all under one roof, with plenty of restaurants where you can savor freshly caught seafood. What's more is there is also a charcoal brazier available for you to enjoy cooking the ingredients bought at the shops over a charcoal fire and is loved by tourists. Various events such as the “Cuisine Dojo” are also held here.
Phone
0178-28-9311
FAX
0178-28-9312
Hours open to visitors
Market building: 9AM-6PM, Kuriya Stadium: 9AM-9PM *Depends on season
Closed
Wednesday *Depends on period
URL
http://www.849net.com/

Grill over a charcoal fire there

You can grill the seafood and meats purchased at the market over an earthen charcoal brazier and eat right away.

about 20 minutes
(Taxi)
15:30

Tour the Japanese sake brewery in Hachinohe Shuzou Sake Brewery

Learn about Japanese sake culture from a port city
A brewery that was established in 1775. Using rice, yeast and local preparation water from Aomori Prefecture, it produces its main brands: “Mutsu Hassen” with its mellow flavor and “Mutsu Otokoyama” which gives off a more dry flavor. Tours of the brewery are also available, and the 6 structures were designated as a tangible cultural property by Japan's Agency for Cultural Affairs and one of Hachinohe's vital scenic structures, making them a must-see. Tasting is also available (fee required).
Phone
0178-33-1171
FAX
0178-34-1174
Hours open to visitors
Wine cellar tour: Monday to Friday from 10AM-4PM (Monday to Saturday in winter)
Closed
Sunday
Fee
500 yen (includes tasting)
URL
http://www.mutsu8000.com/

Japanese sake test testing

A great deal at 500 yen including taste testing.

about 20 minutes
(Taxi)
17:00

Barhopping in Miroku Yokocho

Huddled restauraunts overflowing with hospitality!
Located in the center of Hachinohe, this area is bustling with 26 food stalls. It has a large variety of choices such as local dishes, oden, grilled chicken, and those running the food stalls are easily approachable and ready to strike up a conversation making it a popular spot for tourists. In the heart of the city you can find eight different side streets full of personality that even now has traces from the Showa era so visiting each of the side streets is recommended.
Phone
0178-29-0815 (Food Culture Museum “Pao")
FAX
0178-29-0818 (Food Culture Museum “Pao")
Hours open to visitors
Depends on store location
Closed
Depends on store location
Fee
Depends on store location
URL
http://36yokocho.com/

Hachinohe Sanpo master

Guides will walk with you through the city and show you how to have fun here both during the day and at night.

Stay in Hachinohe

8:10

Depart from Hon-Hachinohe Station

about 10 minutes
(JR Hachinohe Line)
8:25

Head to the morning market in front of Mutsuminato Station

Your own original breakfast in a lively market!
Located in front of the JR Mutsu-Minato Station, many small shops and stores sell fresh seafood products and handmade side dishes from early in the morning. It has been thought of as the kitchen of the residents of Hachinohe following the war. One of the things that visitors can look forward to is finding something from the various selection of seafood at the morning market and pairing it with a meal purchased at the Hachinohe Fish Market, creating their very own breakfast.
Phone
0178-33-6151 (Hachinohe City Fish & Vegetable Market)
FAX
0178-33-7242 (Hachinohe City Fish & Vegetable Market)
Hours open to visitors
3AM-12:00PM (Hachinohe City Fish & Vegetable Market: 3AM-3PM, Meals: Around 5AM-10AM)
Closed
Wednesday (Hachinohe City Fish & Vegetable Market: 2nd Saturday and Sunday)
URL
http://hachinohe-kanko.com/10stories/asaichi/mutsuminato-ekimae-asaichi

Isaba no Kacha

Refers to the lively ladies selling fish. Will assist you in their interesting dialects and gestures. Don't hesitate to strike up a conversation!

about 10 minutes
(JR Hachinohe Line)
10:00

Head to Kabushima Island from Same Station

about 10 minutes
(By foot)
10:15

Kabushima Shrine

An island of faith with dancing black-tailed gulls
Breeding grounds for the black-tailed gull which is designated as one of Japan's protected species. There is a deep red torii archway at the entrance to the island, and the Kabushima Shrine enshrines the god of thriving business and guardian deity of the sea. Between March and August during the breeding season, countless numbers of black-tailed gulls cover the island, and you might even be hit by their droppings, said to be “Black-tailed Gull Bombs” if lucky. For that reason, free umbrellas to protect you from getting hit are also available.
Phone
0178-46-4040 (Hachinohe City Tourism Section)
FAX
0178-46-5600 (Hachinohe City Tourism Section)
Fee
Free to tour (Due to the rebuilding of Kabushima Shrine, entry to some areas of Kabushima Island (top) and the plaza in front of Kabushima Island are restricted)
URL
https://hachinohe-kanko.com/

Certificate of Good Fortune

Issued if you get hit by the droppings of black-tailed guills. It includes your name and your “Lucky Person” number.

about 10 minutes
(Tour Bus)
11:00

Ashigezaki Observation Area

Command a view of the Pacific Ocean from the cape's observation area
A view spot which is also a starting point of the Tanesashi Coast Promenade. You can catch an unobstructed view of the Pacific Ocian from the observation area which almost feels like a fortress. Promenades around the area are maintained and taking a walk while looking at the “Hamanasu” or Japanese rose which blooms from the middle of June to the middle of July is also recommended. Additionally, in the shop at the bottom of the viewing area you can find popular soft-served ice cream.
Phone
0178-46-4040 (Hachinohe City Tourism Section)
FAX
0178-46-5600 (Hachinohe City Tourism Section)
Fee
Free to tour
URL
https://hachinohe-kanko.com/
about 25 minutes
(By foot)
about 10 minutes
(Tour Bus)

Trekking on one section of the Michinoku Shiokaze Trail

Walk through Tohoku and feel the blessings of the sea
"Michinoku Shiokaze Trail,” which connects the Pacific Ocean coastline between Hachinohe in Aomori Prefecture and Soma in Fukushima Prefecture. One of the model courses, “Aomori Prefecture Hachinohe Route,” travels along the scenic view of the Tanesashi Coast which continues from JR Hachinohe Same Station to Okuki Station. From the undulating reefs to the white sandy beaches dotted with pine trees, you can enjoy a dynamic scenic view of the sea that changes every time you walk it.
Phone
022-722-2874 (Tohoku Regional Environment Office National Parks Division)
FAX
022-722-2872 (Tohoku Regional Environment Office National Parks Division)
URL
http://tohoku.env.go.jp/mct/
12:50

Tanesashi Coast

A stretching coastline full of change
Stretching approximately 14km from Kabushima to Hashikami is a coastline which consists of various types of terrain such as desolate rocky and sandy beaches as well as pine groves. The Tanesashi Natural Lawn is a key example of the scenery here, consists of a natural lawn that stretches down to the beach, you'll feel incredibly liber. The various seasonal flowers shift in color from early in the summer to the fall. It is designated as one of Japan's places of scenic beauty.
Phone
0178-46-4040 (Hachinohe City Tourism Section)
FAX
0178-46-5600 (Hachinohe City Tourism Section)
Fee
Free to tour
URL
https://hachinohe-kanko.com/

Tanesashi Coast Information Center

Light meals and cafe also available. Try the original menu.

14:00

Depart from Tanesashi-Kaigan Station

about 30 minutes
(JR Hachinohe Line)
14:40

Arrive in Hon-Hachinohe Station

Stay in Hachinohe

10:15

Depart from Hon-Hachinohe Station

about 100 minutes
(JR Hachinohe Line)
12:15

Ride the Sanriku Railway from Kuji Station

Just riding this unique train is fun!
The “Kotatsu Train” is an event train that runs only in the winter where passengers can enjoy a tatami-style interior and a blanket-covered heated kotatsu table built into the floor. Warm air blows out from the bottom keeping the inside of the kotatsu nice and warm. Enjoy this train journey that warms not only your body but your heart as well. The traditional “Namomi” performance that takes place in the train makes it well worth it. Keep an eye out for the namomi that suddenly appears in one of the tunnels!
Phone
0193-62-8900 (Sanriku Railways Passenger Services)
FAX
0193-63-2611 (Sanriku Railways Passenger Services)
Hours open to visitors
Saturdays, Sundays from December to March, generally operating on holidays. Inquiries: 9AM-6PM
Fee
Boarding section rates, assigned seating: 310 yen
URL
http://www.sanrikutetsudou.com/

Uni Don Bento on the train

We recommend the Uni Don(sea urchin rice bowl) sold in Kuji Station from April to November. Reservation required at least 1 hour before.

about 50 minutes
(Sanriku Railway)
13:10

Tanohata Station

about 20 minutes
(Taxi)
Reservation needed in advance
13:30

Walk in Kitayamazaki Cliffs

Called the most magnificent coastline in Japan!
A dynamic coastline composed of 200m palisades, large and small strange rock formations formed through erosion caused by harsh waves, oddly-shaped stones and caves that stretch approximately 8km. It possesses beauty that can be seen not only during sunny days with clear skies but even on days with rainy weather, creating a scenic view with palisades shrouded in a haze that takes your breath away. The 736 steps stairway from the observation area to the bottom of the cliffs allows you to reach the beach at the bottom.
Phone
0194-33-3248 (Tanohata Tourist Information Center)
Fee
Free to tour

Activities in Kitayamazaki Cliffs

A great plan filled with exciting activities such as a tour boat cruise of the cliffs and Sappa Adventure.

about 50 minutes
(Sanriku Railway)

From Tanohata to Miyako Station

about 15 minutes
(Shuttle Bus)
16:15

Stay in Jodogahama

10:15

Depart from Jodogahama

about 10 minutes
(By foot)
12:15

Tour the Jodogahama Visitors Center

The core of Sanriku Fukko National Park
Including information about the beautiful natural scenery of the Sanriku Fukko National Park which extends 300km north to south of the coast of the Pacific Ocean in the Tohoku region and its four seasons, highlights of the 18 cities, towns, and villages of Aomori, Iwate, and Miyako are explained using informational panels and films. Information about the Michinoku Shiokaze Trail, interesting points of Jodogahama Beach, and the surrounding walking routes is also available.
Phone
0193-65-1690
FAX
0193-65-1691
Hours open to visitors
8AM-6PM (9AM-5PM between November and March)
Closed
No holidays
Fee
Free entry
URL
http://jodogahama-vc.jp/
about 10 minutes
(By foot)
13:10

Board cruise boat in Jodogahama

Feed the Black-tailed Gulls

Try feeding the black-tailed gulls “Umineko-pan” on the 40 minute cruise.

about 10 minutes
(By foot)
13:30

Lunch in Jodogahama Resthouse

14:50

Walk Jodogahama

A beautiful coast as beautiful as Amida paradise
A picturesque scenery that represents Miyako. Its name comes from a Priest Reikyo, a Buddhist priest who lived during the Edo period who said “It's just like Amida paradise.” Sharply-pointed white rhyolite huddled together, the green pine trees, the white color of the rocky surface and the ultramarine color of the ocean creates a beautiful contrast. This changes with the seasons and in the winter you can see the landscape covered in blankets of snow.
Phone
0193-62-2111 (Miyako Ports and Harbor Division)
FAX
0193-63-9120 (Miyako Ports and Harbor Division)
Fee
Free to tour

Blue Cave

A small and mysterious cave reached by a small “sappa” boat.

16:15

Stay in Jodogahama

8:40

Depart from Jodogahama

about 15 minutes
(Shuttle Bus)
8:55

From Miyako Station to Iwazumi-Omoto Station

about 40 minutes
(Sanriku Railway)
about 30 minutes
(Charter Bus)
10:30

Walk the Ryusendo Cave

Giant limestone caves with a fantastical view!
Counted as one of Japan's three large limestone caves, it is designed as one of the country's natural monuments. The total length of the known parts inside the cave reaches 3,600m. 700m of it is open to the public. The stalactites formed through an endless history and one of the world's clearest deep cavern lakes, you can truly experience the wonders of the Earth. There is also a space that appears in the shape of a heart along the way.
Phone
0194-22-2566 (Ryusendo Cave Office)
FAX
0194-22-5005 (Ryusendo Cave Office)
Hours open to visitors
8:30AM-5PM *Depends on season
Closed
No holidays
Fee
Adults: 1,000 yen
URL
http://www.iwate-ryusendo.jp/
13:30

From Ryusendo Cave to Morioka

about 110 minutes
(Charter Bus)
15:45

Shopping at Morioka Station

16:50

Depart from Morioka 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!

  • IWATE
  • MIYAGI
  • FUKUSHIMA

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

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.