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Monday, November 25, 2013

A Walk Around Kyushu Day 20 Part 1 Hyuga City to Takanabe

A Walk Around Kyushu Day 20 (Part 1), Monday March 25th Hyuga City to Takanabe

I headed out at sunrise to an overcast sky that promised to dissipate. Yesterday was a short day and today was going to be a much longer one so I made as fast a pace as I could along the main road heading south out of Hyuga City in Miyazaki.

After an hour I headed off the road towards the hills upon which was the first temple of the day, Nakanoji, number 34. Yesterday there was only one of the pilgrimage temples to visit, today there would be three.

Miyazaki Beach, Kyushu, Japan
Click on the image to expand

On reaching it after a little climb the sun broke through and the line of moss-covered statues along the entrance path was covered with the deep red of fallen camellia blooms and scattered over them like confetti were white cherry petals. There is no-one around this early in the morning so I quickly depart back down the hill, under the new expressway being constructed and follow the road alongside it with its constant stream of dump trucks.

I have no idea how many people in Japan are employed to drive piles of earth from point A to point B but if it was in the millions it would not surprise me.

Japan is in a constant state of being reshaped. The main road now runs past some nice looking beaches with dark grey/beige sand. A lone surfer is out optimistically hoping that the tiny waves will grow. I stop in at a handful of shrines. As the road approaches the Mimi River it starts to rise to become the new concrete bridge spanning the river mouth, and then the sidewalk just stops!

I walk back and try to find a sign that explains how I can cross, but find none so I drop down to the old road and follow it upstream to the old bridge. I'm a bit peeved as I can ill afford the time needed for the detour. Once on the other bank I pass a couple of love hotels tucked away.

The literature on these uniquely Japanese establishments deal pretty much just with urban examples, rural love hotels are quite different.

As the road rejoins the main road at the new bridge I see it has a sidewalk. Looking back I can see a staircase climbing up from the village on the other side. If I had gone into the village I could have found it.

Mimitsu, Mimi Port, Miyazaki Prefecture
Click on the image to expand

Now I am in Mimitsu, Mimi Port, classified as one of the top 100 Most Beautiful Historical Landscapes of Japan. Since the Edo Period, and until the railway and roads took away the business, Mimitsu was a major port and supposedly had 1,000 dwellings, storehouses, and shipping offices.

There are three stone-paved streets in the village lined with Edo period homes, shops, and warehouses. I would have liked to spend a few hours here taking photos and visiting the local history museum, but I had much further to walk today so had to content myself with shooting on the run.

To be continued

Jake Davies

A Walk Around Kyushu 19

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