A bullet train to Kurashiki to take in some history.

Day 11 Planned:

The intended itinerary for today is to:

  • Bullet train to Kurashiki
  • Possible cycle tour
  • Walking a canal district with traditional shops and cafes

I’m actually not sure which way I’ll go here. Although I haven’t seen it yet apparently the movie Napping Princess aka Ancien and the Magic Tablet is partially set in Kurashiki.

Day 11 Actual:

There was actually a local train after the Shinkansen but basically the early morning was spent in travel to the hotel and leaving our bags. After that it was back to the train station to head out into a rural area for a cycle tour.

The train station where we rented the bikes was essentially unstaffed, there was no one there to check our JR Rail Passes, and there was a ticket machine on the train.

It has been a long time since I’ve ridden an upright bike and I’m rather glad that the 17Km or so we covered today was a) flat b) not windy and c) broken by many stops to see interesting shrines and temples. Many, most, of these were related to the story of Momotaro in some way or other.

As may be seen from the photos the rental bikes were, perhaps, not the best examples of bicycles to be found in the world. I chose reasonably well and got a belt drive in decent shape and 3 whole gears to work with… other members of the group were less fortunate.

The scenery was great and well worth the exercise.

We ended up at Soja (I think) and caught a local train back to Kurashiki. Then it was time for the big (as in all you can eat, and they kept the meat coming) Shabu Shabu meal. For the record I did eat some vegetables and even asked for more.

Finally, back to the hotel to crash for an early start tomorrow for the trip to Kyoto.


Despite the scenery being great today (albeit with weather that wasn’t as spectacular as yesterday) there aren’t as many photos since an upright bike isn’t exactly a stable platform for me. But the ones I did take are here.