You probably haven’t heard of Okayama prefecture before but It is in Shikoku area where you can see beautiful nature and the local neighborhood.
If you go to Naoshima island, you will pass Okayama prefecture since Uno port in Okayama is the place you can take a ferry which goes to Naoshima island.
Okayama is also close to Kansai area such as Osaka, Kyoto and Kobe so you can visit Okayama either before or after your trip to Naoshima.
In this article, we will introduce you the best places to visit in Okayama and after reading this, you will have a clearer idea of what it looks like in Okayama!
1. Washuzan Mountain
Washuzan mountain is faced to Seto inland sea and close to Great Seto Bridge.
You could see a great view over the Seto inland sea with lots of islands and Great Seto Bridge from the mountain.
It is one of the famous places in Setonaikai National Park which is the first national park in Japan.
Go there by car and walk around the area while you enjoy some refreshing breeze from the sea. Sometimes you can find some cats relaxing on the summit area!
It takes only 20 minutes to get to the top of the mountain. You will see the view over the beautiful Seto inland sea.
<Access> It is better to go there by car if you could rent a car. 40 minutes by car from Uno station
2. Shibukawa Beach
Shibukawa beach is located in Tamano city which has also Uno port. Take a bus from Uno station to get there.
There are usually not so many people there (except the time when the local school events are held) and you can have relaxing time at the beach.You can just enjoy the sound of the wave and appreciate the beauty of the nature.
You can also go to Shibukawa Marine Aquariums just behind the beach. It is really a small aquarium but you can feel the local atmosphere.
<Access> 20min by bus from Uno station
3. Kurashiki Bikan Historical Area
It is one of the best touristic spots in Okayama. In the history, Kurashiki Bikan area was flourished as a merchant town. The town remains until today with the good old atmosphere with traditional style houses. There are lots of shops and places to eat, see and get the local experience.
Kurashiki Bikan Area is famous for their historical Japanese traditional buildings and shops, restaurants and museums. The area looks like time has stopped since Edo period (17th-19th).
Also,enjoy the specialty you can get from there. The famous one is Kurashiki Denim. There is a shopping area called Denim Street and you can get some high quality denim that will fit you perfectly. Try Denim hamburger which the color of buns is blue!
If you have enough time, we recommend to take “Yakata boat”.
They used to use the boat to deliver the stuffs but now they are running among the Kurashiki River for the visitors. It is very relaxing and you will find the view of Kurashiki Bikan from the boat has the different attraction. Okayama is one of the largest fruit production in Japan so we recommend you to try some while your stay in Okayama!
4. Okayama Castle
Okayama Castle is called Crow castle since its wall is black. It has a connection to Toyotomi who used to be the top warrior during the warring states period. It was originally built in 1597, but it was destroyed during World WarⅡ. The castle you can see today was reconstructed in 1966.
It is six story castle and each story has different exhibition inside. You could see how the castle was built and what they used in the history. Also you can learn some history of Okayama castle. You could see great view of Okayama city from the sixth floor.
Since it was rebuilt about 50 years ago, this black castle looks clean and beautiful.
<Access> 20 min by train & walk from Okayama station
<Fee> 560 yen (you can go to Okayama Korakuen Garden as well)<Web> https://okayama-kanko.net/ujo/english/
5. Okayama Korakuen Garden
This garden is located right next to Okayama castle. It has really beautiful Japanese garden and is known as one of the best three beautiful gardens in Japan.
It will take 1-2 hours to explore all the way around this big garden.
If you are interested in the architecture, there are some traditional old buildings to see there.
It is worth to visit if you are in Okayama!
<Access> 20min by train & walk from Okayama station
<Fee> 400 yen (Korakuen only) 560 yen (Korakuen and Okayama Castle)
Day trip outside of Okayama
We will introduce two more places where you can take a day trip when you have more time to visit the other area.
The tour to Takeda Castle
Takeda castle is located in the north side of Hyogo prefecture and it takes about 3 hours by Shinkansen (bullet train) and local trains.
It was built on Mt.Kojo summit whose altitude is at 353.7 meters.
The thick fogs sometimes appears around this area in the morning. So what you could see there is the view of the castle which covered with thick fogs. It looks like the castle is floating on the sea of clouds.
<Access> 150 min from Okayama station
Hiruzen Resort Highland
Hiruzen resort highland is located in the northern part of Okayama.
There are some activities you can do, for example, you can enjoy cycling in the beautiful nature or you can hung out in the farm. In winter season, it is popular destination for skiing.
<Access> 90 minutes from the center part of Okayama city, 2-3 hours from Osaka
Let’s Visit Okayama!
We hope this article could inspire you to go to this beautiful city, Okayama. If you have any question or want some help to make travel plans in Japan, please contact us!
We are here for you to make your Japan trip the best one.
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