Model Course Vol.04
The northern-most of Shikoku’s four prefectures, Kagawa and Ehime are blessed with gorgeous scenery and great places to visit.
Regarded as one of Japan's best landscape gardens, Ritsurin Garden is an oasis in Kagawa’s capital city, Takamatsu. This Edo-era garden epitomizes the essence of shakkei, “borrowed scenery,” by incorporating Mt. Shiun into its background.
I spent hours wandering through the spacious garden and pausing frequently around the bridges, ponds and artificial hills to admire the scenery. Visitors can take a break from their strolls and visit the teahouses or Sanuki Folkcraft Museum.
TrainApprox. 3 hours
One of Japan's twelve castles with its original keep, Matsuyama Castle is nestled on a hill in the heart of Matsuyama City in Ehime. Visitors can either climb the steps or take the ropeway to the castle. An exemplar of a 17th century castle, the complex structure was first constructed with a five-tiered keep but subsequently renovated as a three-level structure. Venturing inside the castle, I learnt more about the castle’s history and defenstive features and even tried on samurai costumes. The castle’s tower is my favorite spot to rest and enjoy panoramic views of the city.
BusApprox. 15 minutes
Temple number 51 of the Shikoku Pilgrimage, the intriguing Ishite Temple is filled with important cultural and religious artefacts. Ishite means “stone hand,” as the temple is linked to a legend about a man who was reincarnated with a stone in his hand.
A designated national treasure, Niomon Gate opens up to the vast grounds of the temple. The most memorable part of my visit was exploring the enigmatic cave that connects the main temple to the inner temple.
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A passionate educator, Wendy has experiences teaching English in Singapore, Japan and around the world on Peace Boat. With a MA in literary studies, she enjoys writing about her travel adventures. Embracing the “carpe diem” spirit, she thinks that life is too short not to eat and travel non-stop!