#4547

Kure port town and surrounding islands on the inland sea.

Kure port town and surrounding islands on the inland sea.

The historic and beautiful port town of Kure is located between the more famous tourist destinations of Hiroshima and Onomich. A mere 60 minutes on the local train on the Sanyo main line directly from Hiroshima Station.
For those of you looking to experience somewhere off the beaten track, a place where you can learn about Japanese maritime history, enjoy unparalleled views of the unique Seto-inland sea, sea submarine crews changing of the guard and taste delicious local fare Kure is a wonderful day trip. Arrive early because there is so much to do!

After arriving at Kure Station, follow the multi language signs to the Submarine Museum officially titled the JMSDF Kure Museum. The three floor museum both charts the history of the maritime self defense force and has a number of displays and artifacts. Most impressively you get to walk through an actual submarine, both children and adults will steering the sub, and looking through the periscope. Whats more amazingly entrance is free.

After touring the cramped confines of the submarine take a boat tour around the harbor; tours depart regularly throughout the day from Kure Port a two minute walk from the submarine museum or 5 minutes from the station. The 30 minute cruise passes directly by submarines, huge container ships docked in the port, towering cranes and even military freighters.

Returning to land walk across the plaza to the Yamato Museum. Unknown to most people outside of Japan, The museum is named after Yamato a famous warship during the 2nd World War, which was built in Kure. The museum is perfect for military buffs with a replica of the warship, planes torpedos and even kamikaze subs. and even those who would like to learn a different perspective of the war. The third floor also has a huge children's play area where kids can swim in ball pools and man a lighthouse.

If your starting to feel a little hungry pick up some of the local fried cake and enjoy it on a bus to the island town of Miterai.
The bus ride hugs the coast, as it passes through numerous islands all connected by the areas distinctive red arch bridges.
Once in Miterai take a walk around a fishing town frozen in a bygone era. Wooden houses decorated with simplistic flowers to welcome guests along with moss covered temples, a perfectly preserved Japanese theater as well as small family stores and restaurants. All to the soundtrack of gentle waves lapping against the port walls.

As much as you may wish to linger in Miterai, don't forget to get back to Kure by sunset to experience the ceremonial naval lowering of the navel flag ceremony, which can only been seen in Kure.
Everyday directly in front of the Submarine Alley bus stop at sunrise and sunset the sounds of bugles echoes across the harbor and mountains as against a backdrop of the rising or setting sun, the flag is raised and lowered on the submarines and the naval ships docked in the harbor.

To stay with the navel theme, wrap up your day in Kure with some delicious Kure naval curry and a refreshing Kure brewery beer at any of the restaurants around the station.

by Robert

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