Explore the Best of Shikoku & Setouchi Japan with this Incredible 9D7N Package

Explore the Best of Shikoku & Setouchi Japan with this Incredible 9D7N Package

Experience a spring like no other – scenic beauty, strawberry picking, udon making and more!

Thinking about yet another holiday trip to Japan? Why not leave the usual tourist hotspots such as Tokyo and Kyoto behind and take a tour through Shikoku instead? Sure, it might be the smallest of Japan’s main four islands, but there’s no shortage of natural and cultural wonders. From an incredible glittering coastline to movie-inspiring backdrops, there’s plenty to see and do!

Create your perfect moment with JTB’s amazing 9D7N packageSpring Rhythm in Shikoku with Setouchi Japan this NATAS Travel Fair, happening from 22 – 24 Feb 2019. Guaranteed to cover, showcase and highlight the best of the region, there are limited spaces available so hop on in as soon as possible and embark on a journey of a lifetime!

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Day 1: Touch down in Hiroshima

Image credit: Visit Hiroshima

Upon arriving at Hiroshima, head on over to Shimanami to begin your trip! It’s home to Kosanji Temple (耕三寺), one of the local unique Buddhist temples in the prefecture and filled with replicas of some of Japan’s most famous religious sites.

Image credit: JTB

Once you’re done digging into a delicious lunch spread, check into your hotel room before roaming Dogo Onsen Town at your own pace. This quaint town has plenty to see, such as Isaniwa shrine and Ishiteji Temple, but the main attraction has to be Dogo Onsen. It offers baths of all sorts for you to soak in at your own leisure to refresh and recharge.

Fun fact! If Dogo Onsen seems a little familiar to you, that’s because it’s the inspiration behind the timeless favourite Ghibli film, Spirited Away!

Day 2: Bask in the beauty of spring

Image credit: JNTO

After breakfast, set off to Matsuyama to visit Matsuyama Castle (松山城)  a castle in the sky, or rather, a castle perched on top of the mountain. The castle peeks through the swathes of cherry blossoms to offer stunning views from the peak.

Image credit: JNTO

Stroll around Ozu City (大洲) after lunch for a leisurely guided tour that will introduce you to the sparkling Little Kyoto of Iyo. As you wander around the quiet streets and take in the sights of the traditional architecture, don’t forget to try the matcha in the teahouse of Garyu Sanso!

End the day with a scenic walk through Nanrakuen Japanese Garden (南楽園), one of the biggest gardens in Shikoku.

Day 3: Embrace your inner zen – papermaking, peaceful rivers & calming beaches

Image credit: JNTO

Begin the day by visiting Shimanto River (四万十川) and taking in the natural beauty of the scenery as you cross the Sara Chinka Bridge (佐田沈下橋). Shimanto River is the longest in Shikoku with clear pristine waters, making it a picture-perfect spot that’s sure to make your friends back home envious.

Image credit: JTB

Head on to Inomachi Paper Museum to get a hands-on experience making Japanese Paper Washi! Make a pitstop along Katsurahama Beach (桂浜) after to take in the refreshing sea breeze. While you’re not allowed to swim at the beach, it doesn’t make the experience any less beautiful and serene.

Day 4: Be wowed by breathtaking sights

Image credit: 京浜にけ

Get your adrenaline pumping by crossing Kazurabashi Bridge (かずら橋), an amazing suspension bridge made of mountain vines. Fair warning though, it’s not for the faint of heart!

Then, board the Naruto Whirlpool Sightseeing Cruise (うずしお観潮船) to see the roaring whirlpools of the Naruto Strait. A naturally occurring daily phenomenon, it’s definitely an incredible sight to behold.

Image credit: JNTO

Fret not about missing Awa Odori Festival, the most popular dance festival held across Japan in summer. Awa Odori Kaikan holds several traditional dance demonstrations a day, where you can sit back and enjoy the show. If you’re willing to give it a try, you can join in the dance too! As the old Tokushima saying goes, “The dancing fool and the watching fool are both fools, so why not dance?”

Day 5: Fall in love with the seasonal beauty

Image credit: JTB

While in Takamatsu, your trip is not complete without doing two things – the first of which is visiting a local farm for strawberry picking! Kagawa prefecture is known for their incredibly large, sweet and juicy Sanukihime strawberries and the farms allow you to pick and eat as many as you want within half an hour! The second not-to-be-missed activity is making your own Sanuki Udon over at Nakano Udon School!

Image credit: JNTO

A quick ferry ride will bring you to Shodo Island (小豆島), right where the popular couple spot Angel Road Beach is located. During the low tide, a sandbar emerges, opening a path to a series of small islets. It is said that if you walked to the one called Yoshima while hand-in-hand with your partner, all your romantic wishes would be fulfilled!

Day 6: Create new memories on Shodo Island

Image credit: JTB

For a truly unique Japanese experience, why not try your hand at making your own omiyage? Visit Inoue Seikoen (井上誠耕園) for an Olive Oil Making Experience! The Olive Park is also a landmark of Shodo Island that shouldn’t be missed, with groves of stunning olive trees that transport you to the Mediterranean instead! Traditional soy sauce town, Hishiono Sato, also allows visitors to witness the traditional soy sauce brewing process. In fact, the original equipment used is on display at the Marukin Memorial Hall too!

Image credit: JNTO

The Kankakei Valley Ropeway also offers breathtaking views and a relaxing afternoon respite from travelling. End the day with another ferry ride to Shin Okayama Pier to wind down for the night.

Day 7: Re-immerse yourself in Hiroshima

Image credit: JTB

Before returning to Hiroshima, make the best of the early morning fresh air to stroll around the old scenic town of Kurashiki through the Kurashiki Bikan Area (倉敷). You can even take a boat ride down the willow-lined river or walk around wearing a rented kimono!

Back in Hiroshima city, explore the Hiroshima Shopping Area Hondori and Hacchobori for some last-minute souvenir shopping. It’s also worth visiting the preserved ruins of Peace Memorial Park, a beautiful yet chilling sight. To learn more about the history, there are also museums located within the Peace Memorial Museum.

If this sounds like your kind of trip, leave the hassle of planning behind and follow along with JTB Travel on their 9D7N Spring Rhythm in Shikoku with Setouchi Japan Package!

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To top it off, there’s plenty more other equally fantastic package deals up for grabs at the NATAS Travel Fair! Happening this weekend 22 – 24 Feb 2019, the first mega travel fair of 2019 guarantees bigger and better travel deals for all your upcoming adventures.

Brought to you by JTB Travel.

About Author

Rainer Cheung

Motivated out of bed solely by the prospects of food, travel, or her dog's incessant pawing.