THE BEAUTIFUL BRIDGE AND ISLAND SCENERY OF THE SHIMANAMI KAIDO
Experience the charm of Japan’s Inland Sea by bicycle The Inland Sea’s Shimanami Kaido or ,”Shimanami Sea Road”, is a route that links Onomichi city in Hiroshima prefecture, Honshu and Imabari city in Ehime prefecture, Shikoku,through approximately 60 Kilometres of bridges. Thereb are 3 ways to enjoy the beauty of this link between Honshu and Shikoku – by bicycle, via a pedestrian walkway and by motorbike (providing the engine is under 125cc).
The route, which features 7 bridges connecting 6 islands of the Inland Sea, has won fame for hosting cycling tournaments and is now considered one of the best cycling courses in the world. However it’s not just aimed at competitive cyclists – tourists can also enjoy the bicycle route as part of a trip through Japan.
In order to make the route more enjoyable for cyclists, there are cycling rental shops set up where you can hire a variety of types of bikes. For example, if starting from the Shikoku side at Imabari, inside Imabari station the Taiwanese international bike maker, Giant, operates their “Giant Imbari” store. Here you can rent genuine road bikes,hybrid bikes, children’s bikes and electric bikes. To further assist beginners who may just be starting out, along the length of the cycling course is a blue line which lists the distance to the next destination, as well as the direction, so you don’t have to worry about getting lost.
The Shimanami Kaido is not only about the picturesque scenery of interweaving islands and bridges; the area also offers incredible gourmet cuisine featuring local ingredients which should definitely be sampled. So why not take your time exploring the islands by bicycle to truly enjoy the beauty of the Inland Sea?