AsiaJapanTottori

Tottori the land of Dunes Mount daisen and flowers

Tottori Travel Blog

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Mount daisen

Having bought tickets for 12000 yen to be able to go anywhere in the West of Japan, we settled on Tottori prefecture approximately 4 hours from  Osaka. In fact Tottori is the least visited prefecture in japan. Tottori is more well known for its rice and milk than for tourism but it does offer some natural sightseeing areas such as Mount Daisen, a lone volcano  1729 metres high and it also has the only desert in japan, the dunes of Tottori.

Around 6.00 we caught the Nozomi shinkansen from Shin Osaka station to Okayama. The trip takes over 2 hours if you use the limited express train but with the shinkansen reaching speeds in excess of 270 kilometres an hour.

give that a smell Rei
It took less than an hour to get to  Okayama to transfer to the express train to Yonago. Okayama is famous for its black castle and the beautiful surroundings of Kenroukuen park

Well our plan for the day was to hike Mount Daisen,  the ascent takes approximately 4 - 5 hours and the descent another 2- 3hours. We were to catch the bus from Yonago station to take us to the base of the mountain. Mount Daisen looks similar to Mount Fuji as they are both lone volcanoes with no mountain rangers around them. You can't actually hike to the summit of Daisen as the last time it erupted the trail has crumbled and has made it far too dangerous to attempt to climb so you actually hike about 50-100 metres below the true summit.

Mount Daisen

The scenery from the train is really beautiful from Okayama to Yonago, as it passes through a valley with a beautiful crystal clear river. The banks of the valley are full of bright green rice fields  then lead up to the forested mountains above, occasionally you could see fishermen or farmers doing their dailey chores. It gave me a glimpse of what to expect to see in August when we go to Bali.

Finally at Yonago, the nearest city to Mount Daisen. We exit the station and find the bus stop to take us there with 5 minutes to spare. We sit, we wait, we talk, we sit, we wait some more but no bus, we look at the time schedule to make sure its the same as the one on the internet and sure enough it is. this is unusual in Japan for transportation to be late. We wait another 5 minutes and still no bus. My wife takes a better look at the bus schedule and in the finest of finest prints it says this bus does not operate in the months of June and July.

dunes
OH MY GOD, WHAT...............................

Breathe in, Breathe out strike that yoga pose there's nothing to it. After calming down we thought what to do, There was Matsue, a town similar to Kyoto ,only one or 2 stations away, we could go there ,ummmmmmmmmm what else. They had a picture of a flower park with Mount Daisen looming in the background, we could always go there least we'd get to see Mount Daisen.  The free shuttle bus ran every 20 minutes and soon enough  one came, no dramas that time.

The flower park was huge and actually worth the 900 yen entry fee but you didn't here that from me. The parks main features were its large hothouse dome with Daisen looming in the background as well as its beautiful Lillies, Orchids, hibiscus and rose gardens. I'm starting to sound like a botanist, aren't I.

dunes
To my suprise we actually spent 3 hours here.

We then took the train a couple of stations to Misasa Onsen tonight we would be staying at a Japanese Ryokan alway a great experience except when your room smells, the carpet is covered in stains that look like blood or wine and some of the walls had little spots of mold. Admittedly the ryokan was cheap and I'm not one to complain so we stayed put but if I were a bigger man I would have complained to management and asked to be moved to another room.

The onsen though itself was quite nice with an indoor and outdoor bath and a suana, but I'm not a sauna person myself . The dinner also was quite nice, fresh tuna and squid sashimi,deep fried tempura, a few slices of beef steak and a seafood riscotto. It was only about 8 o'clock when we went to our room and fell into a deep sleep.

dunes
, fortunatley there were no bed bugs in the bed.

The next morning caught the train again and we were on our way to Tottori again passed the same beautiful scenery as the day before.two hours passed and we arrived in Tottori, a 20 minute bus ride and we were at the tottori dunes. This is the only desert in japan, an arid land which very little vegetation grows. The dunes stretches for 10 kilometres and can be 2 kilometres in width in places.  The dunes are a real beauty but you need all the energy you can muster as each step you take your leg sinks deeper into the sand. On top of the dunes there is a breathtaking view of the sea. Tottori dunes is a great place to watch the parachutist fill their chutes up with wind and sail. fly float whats that bloody word down from the dunes to the sea. 

If you come  here be careful of the water as there were lots of jellyfish in the sea.

dunes
Are they dangerous i'm not sure I'm not a marine biologist , I'm a botanist remember. Well it wouldn't be a dune or a desert without camels and the place has those too for a whopping 1800 yen you could be led around a little circle and taken for a ride on one of those humps Bloody Tourist trap.

Overall a great weekend I'll be back to the west of Japan again.

 

 

bernard69 says:
Christian,thanks for sharing all these amazing pics of wild nature in Japan and yr beautiful family:)
Posted on: Jun 23, 2009
reikunboy says:
Vance, cheers to that
Posted on: Jun 23, 2009
vances says:
your bus experience was incredibly similar to ours in the Netherlands, lol...here's to open itineraries!

:^)
Posted on: Jun 23, 2009
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Mount daisen
Mount daisen
give that a smell Rei
give that a smell Rei
Mount Daisen
Mount Daisen
dunes
dunes
dunes
dunes
dunes
dunes
dunes
dunes
parachutist at the dunes
parachutist at the dunes
dunes
dunes
the dome
the dome
the dome
the dome
orchids
orchids
orchids
orchids
hibiscus
hibiscus
palm tree
palm tree
hibiscus
hibiscus
lillies
lillies
lillies
lillies
dunes
dunes
dunes
dunes
dunes
dunes
jelly fish
jelly fish
lillies
lillies
my wife and son
my wife and son
view of the sea from top of the du…
view of the sea from top of the d…
mount daisen
mount daisen
parachutists
parachutists
mount Daisen
mount Daisen
mount daisen
mount daisen
parachutists
parachutists
dunes
dunes
parachutist
parachutist
foot prints in the dune
foot prints in the dune
view of the sea from the top of th…
view of the sea from the top of t…
139 km (86 miles) traveled
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photo by: reikunboy