Shikoku

Finally I`ve got time to write about our trip to Shikoku, it was only about 4 weeks ago!

Been doing a bit of overtime lately, so not been at the old pc much.

So anyway, a few weeks ago, we went off to Shikoku, the fourth of Japans, 4 major islands.
(Shi = 4, and also Death, so could be Land of the Dead, as one horror movie recently named it).
We headed off after work, in the pouring rain, which made the driving fun. Lots of bridges and tunnels from Kobe to Shikoku and not much visibility!

Tunnel in Shikoku

Tunnel in Shikoku


First we stopped off at Takamatsu, just 2 hours from Kobe,and quite famous for it`s udon, which my girlfriend loves.
Found a hotel near the station, and headed off to a restuarant.
Takamatsu, Shikoku

Takamatsu, Shikoku

Udon in Takamatsu

Udon in Takamatsu


The next day, we set off to Sojo, where we were meeting some relatives, and then Matsuyama, one of the biggest cities on the island. A great, interesting city. If anyone`s seen the Miyazaki film, Spirited Away, they might recognise the old, famous onsen (public bath) in the middle of the city, as he based the onsen in the movie on it. I didn`t know before, and was surprised when we turned a corner and there it was. Looking exactly like the movie (except for the bridge, and the talking animals, etc.)
Dogo Onsen

Dogo Onsen

Shikoku has 81 temples on it, and many people do a pilgrimage to each one (it`s supposed to take 15 days I think) – according to the horror movie, you`re supposed to go in a specific order, the woman in the film went the opposite way to raise the dead – this isn`t true though!
Number 51 is in Matsuyama, and it`s one of the biggest, and really is quite impressive. There`s also a cave there, leading into the mountains (but it was closed when we got there). Oh, and in a wood near the temple, there`s a mini version of each of the 81 temples so you can do the pilgrimage in just 2 hours if you want. Nice.

Shikoku Temple

Shikoku Temple

Shikoku Bridge

Shikoku Bridge

That night we went to a very Japanese style restaurant and had a set meal, that included individual nabe (a soup containing chicken, vegetables and tofu, that you cook yourself), sashimi, rice (of course) and cooked fish. Fantastic!

Nabe

Nabe


The next day we headed back to Takamatsu for more udon, and then made it home in the evening.


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