Bridge to Heaven

Iwai – Miyazu

79 miles


Passing through the mountains, I revisited both Hyogo and Kyoto Prefecture’s. The sun sat low in the sky first thing; advantageously out of my eyes and guarded by the towering mountain chain before me.

I passed several tunnels, some nearly 4,000 metres in length and, like all things tunnel-orientated, some were more fit for the taking than others. One truck passed so close that a strong vacuum of air tried to suck me under its wheels. Regardless of the danger, I kept pedalling towards that magnificent ray of light at the end of the tunnel, which brought with it an element of safety and refuge, until the next gruelling tunnel that was.

I’d eventually end up in the Kannabe Highlands, observing panoramic views of the final stages of the rice harvest; today not only would I witness the rice still being hung and dried, but the paddy stubble was now beginning to get burnt off in places. Reams of smoke poured out of an array of paddies – that made the area look like the set of a Francis Ford Coppola movie. It was dramatic. The golden crop would soon be feeding a nation.

Descending the highlands, I ventured back into the north of Kyoto Prefecture and ended up in Miyazu, where I found the third and final of Mr Hayashi’s three most scenic sights in Japan. Amanohashidate is a narrow 3km long pine forested spit that worms its way out into the Miyazu Bay, connecting a section of land from north to south. From the southern end of the spit I took a cable car to the summit of a stunted mountain; at the top of which I found a theme park with rollercoasters, a crazy golf course and a Ferris wheel. Amanohashidate means “Bridge to Heaven”, as it is meant to resemble a pathway between heaven and Earth, something that I’m largely unable to comment upon as I’d only ever witnessed Hell on Earth.


Many tourists were bending over backwards and looking out across the bay through  between their legs – the spit from upside down apparently creating that Bridge to Heaven feel. I didn’t join in with such tomfoolery; instead I took a photograph and turned my camera screen upside down afterwards. As I suspected, the view was of a bay turned upside down. It was a nice view all the same, splendid enough, but one of the top three in the country? Never. My top three you ask? Well alright then, here you go:

1.  Mt. Fuji, from every angle

2. Hakodate, at night, and

3. Tokyo, from the Metropolitan Building.

And now you know.

For info and exponential hot goss on my latest travelling endeavours please pay me a visit over at Travel Bloke, thanks for reading:

For a more gratuitous insight into my journey please take a visit to your respective Amazon store or contact me directly for a signed copy and colour map:

Tokyo to Tokyo: A Cycling Adventure Around Japan


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