Amanohashidate (ah-ma-no-ha-she-da-tay) contains one of the Three Great Views of Japan. Look at this amazing sight upside down and you will know why they call it the “Bridge Over Heaven.”
If you want to add a little time to unwind, get out of the city, and enjoy some great views this is a fantastic stop. This town is in the Kansai area and is an especially great and easy stop if Kyoto is a part of your itinerary. There are a few bus and train options that make reaching Amanohashidate from Kyoto very easy.
When you arrive at Amanohashidate Station you will find yourself a short walking distance from many of the main attractions, which makes a stop even a practical day trip.
What we did was stay at a Ryokan (Hotel Kitanoya) that had an open air bath with a view of the water — this is highly recommended.
Just a short distance southeast from Amanohashidate Station is a chairlift that takes you up to Amanohashidate Viewland. From up here you can see the magnificent sight that you came to Amanohashidate for — the pine tree covered sand bar that stretches from one coast to the other.
A must on this trip is to get a look at this sight upside down. This is how you can see the “bridge over heaven.” We really enjoyed having a drink at Amanohashidate Viewland while watching tourists bend over and look through their legs.
Amanohashidate Viewland is a great spot to go with children as it has a number of kid’s rides. Even if you are an adult, you might find a couple things you want to try.
Another must-do in Amanohashidate is to rent a bike to ride across the sand bar. As you make your way to the bridge to the sandbar you will find many reasonable options for renting a bike either for a couple hours or for the while day. There is a temple and some small shrines to visit as you bike through the pine trees and along the beaches.
On the other side there is another lift where you can view the sand bar from the other side. Over here there is a trail that you can hike (or, depending on the time of year, you may be able to take a bus) that will take you up to a beautiful temple and garden area.
There is also a winery over here. Just keep in mind that it is illegal to drink and ride your bike, so you will not be able to have a tasting if you are travelling by bike.
If you want to get a little bit off the beaten path and visit a sightseeing area that mostly only the Japanese vacation to, think about visiting Amanohashidate!
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