Road Trip on Sanko Line (Part 2)

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Road Trip on Sanko Line


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Road Trip on Sanko Line (Part 2)

We continue our two-day trip along the JR Sanko Line. We end Day One at Kasubuchi Station and manage to get to Plaza Sanbe Hotel. It is located in the heart of Oda, a city in Shimane Prefecture. It is late by the time we reach the hotel so we ask the hotel staff to recommend a restaurant for dinner. We are told to try Izakaya Sakura, which is renowned for its homestyle cooking. We feast on egg rolls, stewed beef tendon and fried shrimp.

The next morning, we plan to take the 7.50am train from Kasubuchi Station. However, the hotel’s proprietress tells us that the bus from the hotel will only leave at 7.20am and arrive at the station at 8.10am. So we have no choice but to hitch a ride with a gentleman to the station. We reach Kasubuchi Station in time to catch our train. We ride along the Gonokawa River and alight eight stops later at Shikaga Station.

Our next train departs at 1.55pm, which gives us over five hours to roam around. We meet a local who suggests we visit the Kannon Falls. On the way there, we come across another group of locals who mention a water museum which has been around for 20 years. They also invite us to join them at the Kannon Falls for a barbecue lunch after we have visited the museum.

So we head to the water museum first. The Mizunokuni Museum opened in 1997 and it commemorates the completion of flood prevention efforts on the Gonokawa River. It exhibits various pieces that fuse art and science. An example is an artwork called Coelacanthiformes, which was created by sculptor Takashi Imura. It is also the largest museum in Japan which is dedicated to water.

After this, we walk for an hour to the Kannon Falls, where the locals we met earlier are waiting for us. The waterfall is nearly 50m high. It is a beautiful offshoot of the Shikagadani River, a tributary of the Gonokawa River. We enjoy a barbecue at the foot of the waterfall and later, the kind locals see us off at Shikaga Station.

We then take a 55-minute train ride to the final stop on the JR Sanko Line, Gotsu Station. It is near the Sea of Japan. We meet some high school students who recommend we go to a cafe in Honomachi called Mamechaka; it opened in a renovated old home in 2008. They tell us to try a dessert called the “pandora's box”. It features honey bread coated in ice cream, chocolate syrup and kinako powder.

We end our journey along the JR Sanko Line by visiting the Iwami Osaki Hana Lighthouse. It commands beautiful views of the Sea of Japan. This breathtaking view captured the imagination of poet Kakinomoto no Hitomaro, who was featured in the ancient Manyoshu, a collection of Japanese poetry.


1) The Mizunokuni Museum is the largest museum dedicated to water in Japan
2) Visit the Iwami Osaki Hana Lighthouse to enjoy spectacular views of the Sea of Japan