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Japan Hour

Local Bus Trip To Miura Peninsula

Local Bus Trip To Miura Peninsula

Bus tours to discover unique local places and experience activities such as octopus fishing, sightseeing on tub boats and a luxurious all-you-can-eat meal of top-class beef are featured this week.

This week, we join two popular bus tours to discover unique places and interesting local activities. The first one is conducted by Orion Tour and we will be going around Miura Peninsula. Our tour group has more than 20 participants and the meeting point is Konandai. The bus departs at 8.55am and our tour guide starts telling us about Miura Peninsula. The area is known for its tuna and radish, while a must-see attraction is Hayama Marina, a place for marine sports. 

Our bus enters Yokohama Yokosuka Road. The scenery changes from here and we see many vegetable fields. Our first stop is the Hasse Fishing Port, which faces Sagami Bay. Instead of a sightseeing boat, we board a fishing boat and head to the ocean. We try octopus fishing and have a friendly competition with two other teams to see who catches a larger haul using fish cages. 

The first team of Akane and Saito manages to catch five octopuses, while the second - comprising Mr and Mrs Nakajima - captures one octopus and one marbled rockfish. Unfortunately, we only manage to get one octopus in our cage. The Sajima octopuses from the west side of Miura Peninsula are very popular and are often compared to octopuses from Akashi. They are known to be chewy but are also tender and sweet. An octopus from Sajima can cost more than 1,000 yen each at high-end sushi restaurants in Tokyo. After our fishing experience, we head to an inn near the fishing port with our haul of freshly caught octopus. For lunch, we feast on octopus shabu shabu, octopus rice and deep-fried octopus. 

Our next destination is Yokosuka City, located in the central part of Miura Peninsula. There is a US naval base here. After a 15-minute ride, we alight at Le Soleil, a large-scale theme park which is managed by the city. It normally attracts more than 700,000 visitors each year. It is a popular attraction among the locals. It offers more than 30 different activities and as part of our local tour, we get to attend a bread-making class. It is one of the most popular activities at Le Soleil. Participants can be creative and shape their bread whichever way they want. 

Our bus tour includes a visit to a “petting zoo”, where we also get to see a bird show. The audience can touch a cute horned owl called Sonsu and enjoy a performance by parakeets. The highlight of the show is Harry the hawk from Latin America. 

The second bus tour we will join leaves from Nagoya City in Aichi Prefecture. This time, the meeting point for the Kintetsu tour is the parking area of Valor, a local grocery store in Tokai. It was chosen to make it convenient for participants to drive and park their car here before taking the tour. There are nearly 30 participants and we will be going to Ogaki City in the western part of Gifu Prefecture. On the bus, our tour guide tells us that Ogaki is closely associated with haiku poet Matsuo Basho, who travelled across the Tohoku region and Hokuriku region for five months. Ogaki was the final stop of his epic journey. There is also Ogaki Castle, which was home to famous samurai Mitsunari Ishida. We later get to experience being a boatman of tub boats in the moat below Ogaki Castle as part of the tour. The city is also the number one producer of square wooden cups as it is located near the area where high-quality Kiso cypress trees grow. In addition, it is also known as the birthplace of mizumanju. 

After Ogaki, we head by the tour bus to Sekigahara, where the epic Battle of Sekigahara took place. This area is also known as the birthplace of Japanese buckwheat noodles. Lunch is a luxurious all-you-can-eat meal featuring various kinds of top-class meat - Matsusaka beef from Mie Prefecture, Omi beef from Shiga Prefecture and Hida beef from Gifu Prefecture. 

The bus tour’s last destination is Shiga Prefecture. We go to Lake Biwa, which is famous for marine activities such as sailing as well as the popular Biwako Terrace with its spectacular views. Our final stop is a boat race course. We get to see where the racers prepare for the race and maintain their boats. We also receive boat race course souvenirs. 

Tips:

1)    Hayama Marina is a must-visit attraction of Miura Peninsula
2)    The Le Soleil theme park is a hidden gem of Yokosuka City
 

Source: CNA

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