Oct 21, 2016 Shiga
Part 1 - Omi-Takashima St.
Omi-Takashima Station is located on the JR West Kosei (JR西日本湖西線) in Shiga Prefecture. The Kosei line follows the western side of Lake Biwa until it connects with the Hokuriku Main Line in Omi-Shiotsu. If you've taken the Thunderbird or any other express train from Osaka to Kanazawa or Toyama then you've probably been on the Kosei Line. Takashima is a rural city with a tourist infrastructure for year round outdoor activities and nature. As with many places in Shiga, the former name Omi (AKA Ohmi) is used in place names to mean Shiga Prefecture.
I love finding random things like this. There is a fishing pond here by the station with this segmented bridge. Great public infrastructure if not completely underused.
Looking back towards the train line. The big white building is a local hospital which looked pretty busy. Perhaps it's one of the largest in the area. (Side note: I was interested in how the hospital had a keicar [軽自動車] only parking lot. This is definitely a car dependent area of Japan.)
I wish I had more time to explore through this old part of the city. All the new shops are along the new roads. They are not so photogenic. Around here I could have taken more pictures than I'd ever have time to edit.
Things Grow Here
I went to Guam in September and was amazed about how much plant life just grew and grew. The same is here in Japan. Almost brand new asphalt here on the sidewalk but the grass is already coming through. The open spots around the trees also just filled in with plants. Nature is doing its best to reclaim the places taken over my us.
Not sure what this use to be (fishing related I would bet) but it's not much any more.
A Green Roof
Do the fallen pine needles provide a "soil" for the grass to grow or are they just stuck up there because of the grass which is growing for other reasons.
Build Around Nature
Cars need straight roads, but bicycles and pedestrians can enjoy a bit of curves--especially if it means leaving the trees as they are. (Also, notice how all the white tags are at the same height. )
Takarabune Onsen 宝船温泉
A ryokan, camp site, BBQ spot and day use hot spring. There is an indoor and outdoor bath here which are separated requiring to re-dress if you want to try both out. Both baths could fit 2 people maybe 3. It's great water. Very unique spot. I'll link the review once I write it.
Shiga Prefect seems to be all about the bike rental at the stations and I've seen it a few times now. I didn't know there was a rental here at Omi-Takashima but was very happy to use it. Being on a bike definitely allowed me to explore much more of the area that I wouldn't have otherwise. Good option to keep people using the train and affordable. This bike for a few hours cost about ¥300. I can't remember exactly. Only downfall is they close early--around 5 or 6 probably.
Omi-Takashima Station Info
- ~1 hour from Osaka
- ¥1.490 form Osaka
- Shinkaisoku trains stop here
- There is a Lawson by the station
- Bike rental available
- There's also some Gulliver's Travels related something around there. You'll see it when you exit the station.
- Photos on Flickr