Let’s drive around the many highlights of Sawara by bicycle! 【Sawara Special3】
Sawara is popular for its townscape which preserved the traces of the Edo Period, the time when there were Samurai in Japan. This article is the third in a series of 4 articles in which the charms of Sawara are introduced in detail.
This time, we would like to introduce a route to enjoy the water town of Sawara by bicycle. Blessed with sources of water such as the Tone and the Ono Rivers, Sawara is a town where the bustle of the time it flourished thanks to transportation on water still remains. So by cycling along the riverside, you can cover many of Sawara’s attractive places. Well then, let’s rent a bicycle and start our journey!
①Suigo Sawara Tourist Association's Station-Front Tourist Information Center
At the Suigo Sawara Tourist Association's Station-Front Tourist Information Center, you can not only rent bicycles but also buy souvenirs. In addition, there are coin lockers and suitcases can be left there, too! Thanks to these conveniences, you can even drop by and have fun just before your return to your country.
Address:74-31, I, Sawara, Katori City, Chiba Prefecture
Closed:Open 365 days
Price:Regular bicycle ¥500, Electric bicycle ¥700
Note: Rentals are canceled if it is raining.
②Along the Tone River (Cycling Route)
Let’s get on our bicycles and head towards the cycling route along Tone River. From the road built along the banks of the Tone River, the view is outstanding! Since there aren’t many cars or pedestrians, you can cycle free and easy.
③Along the Ono River
After that, let’s head towards the Ono River. Here, you can ride the bicycle while looking at the traditional Japanese townscape. Let’s stop from time to time to enjoy the view from the riverside or one of the bridges.
You can also encounter the rare scenery of a single-track railway crossing, which is unusual in present Japan.
④お休み処どんどん (Oyasumidokoro Dondon) /in Burekimera Parking
When you feel just a little tired from cycling, go to “Oyasumidokoro Dondon”, where you can eat a desert which is only available in Sawara: A gelato made by using soy sauce, which is a famous local product. The subtle fragrant of Japanese-style flavor is exceptional. Other seasonal gelatos are recommended, too.
Address:1720-1, I, Sawara, Katori City, Chiba Prefecture
Closed:Dec. 31, Jan. 1
Price:Various gelatos ¥350 each
⑤香取神宮 (Katori-jingu Shrine)
Once you have restored your physical strength with sweets, the next destination is the Katori-jingu Shrine. Associated with the god responsible for the protection of the country, this shrine has a close connection to the imperial household. In general, people go there to pray for the safety of the household as well as for certain victory in martial arts and recently, it has gained popularity as a power spot.
The cherry blossom or the foliage season is particularly recommended!
Address:1697 Katori, Katori City, Chiba Prefecture
Business hours:All hours (Reception 8:30-17:00)
Closed:Open 365 days
The scenery of the Kanpukuji Temple, where you can see brilliant cherry blossoms or multicolored autumn leaves is worth seeing, too. It is a popular location visited by people from all over Japan.
⑥水の郷「さわら」 (Mizu-no-sato Sawara)
After cycling further, let’s have a break at Mizu-no-sato Sawara. Apart from a comprehensive information center, this facility permanently accommodates a food court and a space selling special products, where souvenirs can be bought. By all means try the “Soy Sauce Cider” made using the soy sauce of a well-established maker.
Address:3981-2, I, Sawara, Katori City, Chiba Prefecture
Business hours:Roadside Rest Area (Apr.-Sep.) 9:00-19:00 / (Oct.-Mar.) 9:00-18:00
Closed:Open 365 days
Below is the bird’s-eye view of the cycling route introduced in this article.
In addition, along the route you can stop by the Sawara Visitor’s Center located in the historic townscape, where information on Sawara’s sightseeing spots, restaurants and events is available.
Address:1903-1, I, Sawara, Katori City, Chiba Prefecture
Closed:Every second Mon. (or the next regular weekday if the Monday falls on a holiday), Jan.
Sawara has many spots worth seeing. Why don’t you get on a bicycle and go a little further?