Saturday, April 7, 2018

Chugoku Sanyo, San-in 中国地方山陽、山陰 - Onomichi JR Station 尾道駅, Onomichi Hondori 尾道本通り


Onomichi JR Station (尾道駅) is a train station located along Sanyo main line and is the gateway to Senkoji (千光寺), a historic temple which has been around since 806 and Kannon is being worshipped here. Due its elevated position on a mountain slope, the main hall became a popular destination to capture a panoramic view of Onomichi city and Seto Inland Sea.

This train station is only served by local trains and the fastest way to get to here from either Okayama or Hiroshima is as follows:
- from Okayama, board Kodama on Sanyo Shinkansen line heading for Hakata, alight at Fukuyama 福山駅 and transfer to local train.
- from Hiroshima, board Kodama on Sanyo Shinkansen line heading for Shin Osaka, alight at Mihara 三原駅 and transfer to local train.

Onomichi Tourism Association: https://www.ononavi.jp/index.html


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What's nearby?


(1) Bus Terminal, about a minute walk from the train station. Upon exiting from the train station, turn right and the bus terminal will be within sight.
- There are two ways to get to Senkoji-san Ropeway (千光寺山ロープウェイ), either by foot (which takes approximately 15 minutes) or take any Onomichi Bus (尾道バス) from Platform 1 and alight at Nagae guchi (長江口). There is a bus departing from this platform almost every 10 to 15 minutes, making bus a convenient option to get to the ropeway station located at the foot of the mountain.
Fee (from Onomichi ekimae to Nagae guchi) = 140 yen
(2) Onomichi Hondori Shopping Street 尾道本通り, about five minutes walk from the train station.
The entire stretch of Onomichi Hondori is about 1.2 km long and is completely sheltered. Such covered walkway where shop houses lined the sides of the street is actually quite a common sight encountered in Japan. One major concern pertaining to these streets is the decline in patrons (especially foreigners) over the years. Especially in smaller cities/towns, many of these shop houses have ceased operations and is in need of revitalisation to survive in the modern days. In recent trips, it is heartening to see signs of improvements which are brought about by younger entrepreneurs choosing to set up their businesses here, injecting life to these hushed shopping streets.

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After visited Senkoji and had Onomichi Ramen at Ichibankan (尾道ラーメン壱番館) for lunch, we made our way to the shopping street, heading towards the direction of Onomichi JR Station.


Yu-Yu- (ゆーゆー): This is a building which will grab anyone's attention while strolling along the street. Formerly a communal bathhouse, which has been around for more than a century since the Meiji era, Yu-Yu retains most of the features inside out even after being converted into a cafe and shop. Take for example the two doors to Yu-Yu-, these were previously the entrances to the male and female bathhouses. Though we did not patronise both the cafe and shop in the end, we found many people like us walking into the building, trying to identify and relate to the various nostalgic elements/details which were left behind by the olden days. 
Opening hrs: 1100 - 1700 hrs; closed on Thursdays.



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Bakery Koro (パン屋航路): In general, Onomichi Hondori was pretty quiet on the day of our visit but there was one shop which was unexpectedly packed with patrons. Our noses led us towards this modern looking shop where an aromatic scent of freshly baked bread was continuously coming from it. Bakery Koro focuses and is particular about dough formation as it aims to create more wholesome tasting bread. There is a huge varieties of bread to choose from; could not resist the temptation and decided to join the crowd. Because it was freshly delivered out from the oven, the crispy crusted bread was soft on the inside with well distributed air pockets. One hidden gem uncovered!
Opening hrs: 0700 till all the bread is sold out for the day (~1800 hrs); closed on Thursdays and Fridays.
Website: https://www.facebook.com/%E3%83%91%E3%83%B3%E5%B1%8B%E8%88%AA%E8%B7%AF-1571256129768935/



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Onomichi Hondori website: http://www.okaimonomichi.com/shop/index.htm

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Commemorative stamp:




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