2016.10.2
Hiroshima

The Fun of Any Trip to Miyajima Starts at Miyajimaguchi!! Top 5 Recommendations!

Miyajima has become a place that attracts travelers from all over the world, and has just been placed in TripAdvisor’s “Top 3 Best Attractions by Foreign Travelers Ranking 2016”.

Did you know that the fun actually begins before even getting there? Miyajimaguchi, the gateway from the mainland to Miyajima, is littered with old wooden cafes, cafes where backpackers gather, bars, and other out-of-the-way spots. Here are some recommendations:

1) Factory Specialty Coffee in Miyajimaguchi : Itsuki Coffee Factory

Itsuki Coffee was one of the first cafes to open in Miyajima. They now have 3 cafes, but their first was Itsuki Coffee Factory in Miyajimaguchi. Conveniently located, it’s right by the ferry that goes to Miyajima, many tourists stop by for some refreshment and reinvigoration. The hand-dripped coffee made with beans the cafe roasts itself comes highly recommended, and the menu is packed with flavorful choices such as espresso, cafe latte, casacara tea made with dried coffee cherries, etc. – a menu to satisfy anyone!

The hand-dripped coffee is simply amazing.

Itsuki Coffee factory

Address: 1-11-7, Miyajimaguchi, Hatsukaichi, Hiroshima Prefecture
Open: 9:00~19:00
Closed: No scheduled holidays
Tel: 0829-20-5106
Parking: 5 spaces
Access: 5 minutes walk from JR Sanyo Honsen Line’s Miyajimaguchi Station
http://itsuki-miyajima.com/

2) A Memorable Hidden Cafe : Miyajimaguchi no Omoide shop epilo

Located in the renovated storehouse of Anagomeshi Ueno, the cafe is very well disguised. “I want travelers to Miyajima to come for both the ‘prologue’ and epilogue’ of their trip and make some good memories here,” says cafe manager Matsushima. Together with her mother who is the owner, she runs the cafe which also sells various items unique to Hiroshima, such as local souvenirs and books by local authors. The 2nd floor cafe space contains over 2000 secondhand books for customers to read. The books are mainly about travel, food and art, and can also be borrowed. With the purchase of one drink, customers can also bring an anagomeshi (eel-over-rice bowl) bento from the restaurant next door.

The 1st floor features retro tableware and local souvenirs from Hiroshima.

Miyajimaguchi no Omoide shop epilo

Address: Inside Anagomeshi Ueno 1-5-11, Miyajimaguchi, Hatsukaichi, Hiroshima Prefecture
Open: 10:00~18:00 (Sat/Sun/public holidays open until 19:00)
Closed: No scheduled holidays
Tel: 080-3879-0016
Parking: A few spaces available (Anagomeshi Ueno parking spaces may be used)
Access: 4 minutes walk from JR Sanyo Honsen Line’s Miyajimaguchi Station
http://epilo.net/

3) Fresh Out-of-the-Oven, Guaranteed! Popular momiji manju shop : Okinado

Momijo manju (maple leaf-shaped buns with bean-jam filling) shops as popular as this one are a rare sight. At Okinado, customers are guaranteed freshly baked hot manju, and this attracts a steady stream of customers. “We do this because we really want to make great momiji manju,” says shop manager Kitani. Out of the 6 different bean jams on offer, not one fails to impress. Even the cream bean jam that can now be seen all over the country, originated at Okinado. The recommendation is the cheese momiji manjuu, which contains a mix of 7 different cheese types.

The soft fluffy dough and the melted cheese is a great combo!

Okinado

Address: 1-10-7, Miyajimaguchi, Hatsukaichi, Hiroshima Prefecture
Open: 9:00~19:00
Closed: Thursdays (changes may occur)
Tel: 0829-56-0007
Parking: Unavailable, but there’s coin-parking nearby
Access: 5 minutes walk from JR Sanyo Honsen Line’s Miyajimaguchi Station
http://okinadou.com/

4) Keeping Miyajimaguchi’s Traditional Pottery Art Alive! Miyajimaguchi Kawahara Geneido

Since its start at the beginning of the Edo period (1603~1867), Osunayaki (pottery that has sand from Miyajima mixed in the clay) has been through countless rises and falls. Today, three pottery studios still breathe life into the art form. One of them, Kawahara Geneido, is comfortably situated on the road between Miyajimaguchi station and the ferry. Passersby stop to watch the potters as they work at their wheels on the other side of the large glass windows. Inside, a large amount of pottery is on display, but the best sellers are the single-flower vases and plates for everyday use. Those who are interested can also have a painting lesson. Please contact the store directly for more information.

Visitors can watch the potters pouring all their attention into the clay and working the wheel.

Kawahara Geneido

Address: 1-5-15 Miyajimaguchi, Hatsukaichi, Hiroshima Prefecture
Open: 10:00~19:00
Closed: Store is open throughout the year (Atelier has irregular holidays)
Tel: 0829-56-0238
※ Painting lesson reservation required. Please call for more information
Parking: 5 spaces
Access: 4 minutes walk from JR Sanyo Honsen Line’s Miyajimaguchi Station

5) Bar & Cafe Combined! Backpackers Miyajima (2,900 yen a night)

Backpackers Miyajima is the perfect spot for people travelling the world on a tight budget. Backpackers can stay the night for the low price of 2900 yen per person. Opening in 2015, on the first floor is a cafe and bar where guests can eat pizza and drink beer from all corners of the world. Making this new tourist spot a welcoming place, backpackers, locals and regulars alike come together.

Events are also held here every now and then. Today, an impressive magic show livened-up the place.

Backpackers Miyajima

Address: 1-8-11 Miyajimaguchi, Hatsukaichi, Hiroshima Prefecture
Open: Cafe & bar 18:00 ~ 22:00
Check-in: 16:00 ~ 22:00
Tel: 0829-56-3650
Car parking: Unavailable
Bicycle parking: Available
Access: 5 minutes walk from JR Sanyo Honsen Line’s Miyajimaguchi Station

http://backpackers-miyajima.com/

For visitors, the road between Miyajimaguchi station and the ferry is a treasure trove of gems. Swing by for a little while, and your trip will definitely get a lot better! Why not drop in the next time you’re on your way to Miyajima!

Setouchi Finder photo-writer: Akiko Isonaga

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