Minetopia Besshi : A Place Beyond Space & Time to Experience Mining History & Be Healed by the Forest – The Gold Prospecting Edition?!

Last time, we recommended a sightseeing trip to the Minetopia Besshi copper mine:




But that’s not the only attraction here…

First, take a look at this!

This is a rock that’s on display in the facilities.


Naturally, it’s not just any old rock. Take a good look at the price tag – it costs JPY26,420,000?! In fact, it’s a very large piece of gold ore that weighs around 2 tons and contains around 6.1 kilograms of gold, and around 2.1 kilograms of silver.

I was surprised that such a valuable rock is just left laying around. 😉

Well, let’s leave that aside. What I really want to talk about today is that visitors to Besshi Copper mine can also enjoy searching for gold and silver in this activity corner!


The Gold dust searching experience!

As it looked like a lot of fun, I decided to try it out for this article!

Gold and silver is mixed in sand that you can scoop and search for 30 minutes!


As you shake your scooped sand in water, the lightweight sand is washed away leaving the heavier grains, and within that lays gold and silver!

In addition, you can also find turquoise, crystal, tiger-eye, sodalite, carnelian and many other colorful stones mixed in.

When you’re done, put them in the container and take them home!


You can also make key holders with the gold, silver and stones you found.

It’s really fashionable, right? 🙂

On top of that, somewhere mixed within the sand there is gold with a tanuki mark on it (tanu-gold). If you find three of these, you can exchange them for a 5-gram solid gold ingot!


I was completely absorbed in searching, but this time I wasn’t able to find three…

If you visit, do have a try!

If you feel hungry after your gold hunt, visit Mori no Kaze, a restaurant in the same building.

Popular for its deep fried oysters, I especially recommend the extremely hearty “Donden donburi”!

This is the 2nd article of the Minetopia Besshi series. Look out for the 3rd and final one – it’s the best!

I will introduce the Tounaru Zone, which is also known as the Machu Pichu of the Orient!

Don’t miss it!

Minetopia Besshi
Location: 707-3 Tachikawa-cho, Niihama city, Ehime prefecture
Tel: 0897-43-1801
Business hours: Gold dust searching experience 9.30-16.00 (Open everyday from the spring holidays to Nov. From Dec. thru the spring holidays, open only on Saturdays, Sundays and national holidays. However, if a reservation is made for 10 people or more, it will open on weekdays, as well.
Gold dust searching experience fees: Middle school students and older JPY600, Elementary school students JPY500
Parking: for 383 cars
HP: http://besshi.com/ (Japanese)

Setouchi Finder Photo-writer: Daisuke Chiba



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Written by

Daisuke Chiba

Daisuke Chiba

Daisuke Chiba / Photo-writer I was born in 1985 in Miyoshi City, Tokushima Prefecture, and now live in Tokushima City. After graduating university, I worked at a publishing company as an editor for various mooks, and in April 2014 I went freelance. I work as a photographer, copy-writer and editor, but also do product development and other stuff as well. If anyone needs me, I can do anything! Except, in spite of my being from Tokushima, dancing - I’m really bad at dancing Awa Odori!


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