Takehara [竹原市], in Hiroshima Prefecture, claimed to have its own Gion-like district, and they are trying really hard to promote it. I decided to check out whether it was true / worth it. And after half an hour what I kept wondering was “are you sure you’d want this to become as crowded as Kyoto?”
The historical area consists on a few streets, temples and shrines dating back to the Edo period. Let’s see whether I can retell the route accurately. My first stop was Izumo Jinja [出雲神社]
After I had taken the wrong turn a couple of times because the map was cute but not that accurate, I found the “Takehara Historical District”, actually Takehara Townscape Conservation Area Takehara Machinami Hozon Chiku [たけはら町並み保存地区]. The main tourist route runs along Honmachi [本町] Street, and during my whole walk I ran across maybe ten other tourists.
My first diversion was Choseiji [長生寺].
After this I had a better idea of where I was, so things rolled more easily. I continued along the houses and turned right to climb up Saihoji Fumeikaku [西方寺普明閣].
Afterwards I visited Okakae Jizo [おかかえ地蔵], who will grant you wishes if you pick him up
Then Ebisu Jinja or Kodo [胡堂].
Afterwards, Shōrenji [照蓮寺].
Historical alley, holding Shumpukan [春風館] and Fukkokan [復古館].
I diverted then to Sumiyoshi Taisha [住吉神社].
And Kusunoki Jinja [楠神社].
Isonomiya Hachimangu [磯宮八幡] was under construction, so I did not bother the workers.
After this I wandered a little around the river, considering whether going to the harbour or not, but in the end I decided against it and headed off back to the station, where I took a train towards Mihara [三原], where I visited the site of Mihara Castle Remains, Mihara jōato [三原城跡].
I also found… Rakkii Jinja [らっきー神社], which I think it’s actually “Lucky Jinja”… in Mihara Station… I don’t ask anymore… but apparently Mihara is the “Octopus Town” and this is their mascot?
Then I went on back towards Nagoya via Kobe. This took around three and a half hours, so I was in Nagoya [名古屋] around late afternoon. Once there, I continued on my search for long jackets and I was finally successful in acquiring two of them in the Midland Square Mall, where I actually went to check out on a LemonEd pop-up shop… which I almost didn’t find because it was way too discrete.
Walked distance: 17438 steps / 12.4 km.