06 May, 2009

Matsuyama, another Japanese Beauty


Matsuyama is the capital city of Ehime Prefecture, in Japan. It is located on the Shikoku island of Japan, on the northeastern part of the Dogo Plain. It has a population of over half a million of people and a density of over 1000 people / square kilometer. You can find many hot springs, and visit Dogo Onsen, the oldest hot spring bath in Japan.

Its history dates from the medieval times. There are many temples dating from the past like Ishite-ji and Taisanji, both dating from the 8th century. Also, there are many shrines like Isaniwa shrine, built in the second part of the second millennium. Other attractions are poet’s Masaoka Shiki house or the Shiki Memorial Museum.

Matsuyama is now a modern city, the largest in Shikoku. Despite this, it has kept its streetcar systems. Also, you can travel by bus; the bus network connects all corners of the city. Besides buses, there are also trains, taxis or you can always rent a bicycle. The bicycle is always a great way to see the city, no one rushing you. The city’s airport has regular flights to Tokyo, Osaka and other major cities. It also has international destinations like Shanghai and Seoul. You can travel by ferry to Kobe, Kokura, Kita-ku and places. The culture is not neglected either. The city is home to several universities, like Ehime University. The city creates unique products like tarts and Botchan dango. If you like festivals, you can go to the Dogo Festival, held in spring, the Fall Festival, held in autumn. Matsuyama has a local football club: Ehime F.C.

The city is very charming. There are attractions like Dogo Park and Yukuzi Castle Ruins, Ninomaru Historical Garden, Shiki Commemorative Museum, or 8 of the 88 temples that are part of the Pilgrimage.

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