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When people go to Miyajima, they usually aim to hike Mt. Misen, the island’s highest peak. Miyajima affords spectacular views of the Seto Inland Sea from the mountain – even as far as Hiroshima on clear days. Some people might be too lazy to hike. Yet, with a ropeway to help us hike halfway, we will still need to hike a kilometer away from the last station of the ropeway in order to reach the peak.

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We island visitors might visit Miyajima and its mountain around winter, when the day is shorter than in summer. After getting off the ferry, we get excited to pet the deer, go to Itsukushima shrine, taste local food, and shop at Omotesando shopping street. We then realize it’s getting darker outside when it’s just 15.00! Okay. Don’t panic, everyone. If we want to see the Seto Inland Sea from Mt. Misen and take great pictures with the scenic sea as a background, we can still make it. We just have to take the ropeway from Momijidani Ropeway Station towards Shishiiwa Station, the last station of Miyajima Ropeway. Shishiiwa Obervatory is right next to it.

view of Seto Inland Sea from Miyajima Ropeway, Hiroshima

We can also see the beauty of Seto Inland Sea from the Miyajima Ropeway

Atop the mountain’s Shishiiwa Observatory, with our limited time, we can still enjoy the Seto Inland Sea. The Seto Inland Sea (瀬戸内海) is a semi-enclosed coastal sea surrounded by Honshu (the main island of Japan), Shikoku, and Kyushu. Miyajima is one island in this sea, considered Japan’s most scenic waterway and protected within the Inland Sea National Park. It sounds great, doesn’t it? Don’t forget to take pictures with this well-known sea as the background. Shishiiwa Observatory in Miyajima is the perfect spot to take that kind of picture.

view of the sea from an observatory atop a mountain, Miyajima, Hiroshima

Seto Inland Sea from Shishiiwa Observatory, Miyajima

taking a picture atop a mountain, Miyajima, Hiroshima

My friend taking a picture

It’s time to go back! The last ropeway to Momijidani Station will depart at 17.00. In winter, better hurry, because from here, we’ll be able to see a beautiful sunset as well. It’ll be a perfect end to the day.

sunset from the observatory atop a mountain, Miyajima, Hiroshima

Sunset from Shishiiwa Observatory, Miyajima, Hiroshima.


Shishiiwa Observatory Access:

From JR Hiroshima Station, take the JR Sanyo Line to Miyajimaguchi station with either a 410 Yen ticket or your JR Pass. A 260 Yen tram ticket is a cheaper yet slower option.

Walk directly to the ferry docks from Miyajima station. You can board either the JR or Matsudai ferry for 180 Yen.  The journey takes 10 minutes, and the JR ferry is covered by the pass.

Once on Miyajima, walk 20 minutes from the ferry pier. The gondola ride takes 20 minutes and includes one transfer.  Continue hiking for half-an-hour to Shishiiwa Observatory.

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I am a university student from Indonesia and am currently exchange program student in Tokyo.

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