(尾道市-shi) is a city located in the Hiroshima prefecture
If you have the opportunity to visit a single place on your road to Hiroshima
, it should probably be this one : Onomichi
Harbor city of average scale, wedged between Fukuyama and his numerous pachinko and the remote suburbs of Hiroshima, the town of Onomichi might first look as an ordinary and uninteresting japanese city.
Located between Okayama and Hiroshima, you will need to get off the shinkansen at Fukuyama and take a local line to reach Onomichi station. But believe me, Onomichi is a very good place to reach the old Japanese spirit. Why is that? Well, there are some elements that never lie. Whether you are an admirer of the film maker Ozu
(the city is also the starting point of his movie “Tokyo monogatari”), enjoy life guided by rural nonchalance, the rustic behavior of the locals, the kitsch and oldies appearance of the shops on the main arcade, or just if you love simple things, you will be able to share Onomichi's secrets. Numerous artists, writers and film makers have come and frequented the city, and a famous writer, Fumiko Hayashi
, has passed the majority of her life here; Onomichi also serves as background for a manga – which became later an anime. There are no luxurious things and amazing constructions like in Tokyo, and the town lacks the vitality and language of a city like Osaka. But it is an old-fashioned, charming place that you will encounter, the kind of images found in the classical japanese movies. The town is indeed surviving the passing time.
If your curiosity leads you here, don’t expect to find attractive addresses or extraordinary spots known only by a couple of happy few. Onomichi is a simple and modest city; so go there, and walk around with a opened mind. This could mean hanging around the harbor, shopping under the main arcade, walking on the hills or hunting down the cats humming on a sunny winter; you sure will find the pleasure of being a pedestrian. There are many small museums, well-hidden and sometimes charming. Most of the temples are located on the hill, and some of them have a long-lasting history; all of them have been spared during the 2nd World War, and deserve the trip, even if it is just for the panorama.
Anyway, if all these efforts make you hungry, the downtown popular restaurants will be the appropriate answer! You will find there ramen, sushi, lots of café offering curry, or even some typical french bistro cuisine with a characteristic japanese taste...
(Ramen) : If you are an epicurean person enjoying ramen like in the movie Tampopo, go there, it’s not probably one of the best ramen-ya of the Hiroshima prefecture, but also one of the best in Japan. They use here a fish base for the broth, which gives a special taste to the ramen. Very well known in the city and by japanese tourist, the entrance is always full of people standing here, waiting to get the opportunity to taste those very famous ramen. Try it, you will love it!
Address : 尾道市十四日元町4-12
has learned french cooking in France, but he doesn’t forget his japanese origins. The result is more than convincing. And since the deco, the service and wine list are all very attractive, why hesitate ?
This sympathic bistro is located just in front of Shukaen
Address : 尾道市十四日元町3-33
Phone : 0848-37-7145
: Despite the old, uninspiring front wall, do not hesitate to climb the stairs to a second floor displaying no sign of luxury. Like the name said, Grill Akane serves a typical yakiniku food. The quality of the meat and the curries is one the best I ever tried (probably more tasteful than the Four Seasons in Tokyo!!), but the specialty is clearly liver! Several time award winners in international competitions, the chef is also proud of its gold medal received at the Brussels gastronomic salon.
Address : 広島県尾道市十四日元町7-11
Web : a-kane.co.jp
: You’re still hungry ? Then head off to the north, and just below the hill you will found Commons, where the waffle and the ice combinations are so gorgeous that you will leave with a couple of extra pounds.
Web : www.common.jp/index2.html
Karasawa Ice Cream
: If you like ice cream, this is «THE » place to be. Maybe one of the best ice cream makers of Japan, this small and modest house is dedicated to ice cream since many years. Despite a small choice (vanilla, macha, red beans), the taste is so creamy, and the waffle so crunchy, that you will leave the place delighted. One of the best ice cream makers for the journal Brutus
: you cannot come to Onomichi
, and not try it!
Address : 広島県尾道市土堂1-15-19
Web : www.ice.jcom.to
Have a nice trip !!
Some useful links
Official web site of the town, including places to visit, museum, walks, temples and activities :
The Yokoso site made by the japanese tourism association:
And a link for the movie « Tokyo Monogatari » from the film maker Ozu :