Ishinomaki city in Miyagi prefecture was one of the many cities affected by the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami. According to data, this city received waves of up to 10 meters that went inland for 5 Kilometres.
On our way to Ishinomaki
To visit Ishinomaki we took a bus from Sendai station. I will never forget this bus trip because, as we got closer to the city, I could hear and old obaasan crying in the bus.
When we arrived to the city, we got our map from the tourist office and found out that Ishinomaki is well known for its manga museum and for being the hometown of a famous manga artist Shotaro Ishinomori.
So we decided to walk towards this manga museum and on our way we passed by a covered area where an historical parade was happening. Suddenly, the street was filled with samurai!
Samurai parade in the covered area of the city
We continued our path and got to the manga museum which was also where the area destroyed by the tsunami also started.
The manga museum
From the manga museum we walked a little bit in the direction of the Ocean and after walking along these paths for a while we decided to go back. Unfortunately, we never got to the Ocean, but the impact of the tsunami could easily be seen around us.
You can still see some houses and building that were affected in 2011
Back at the museum and we found a small acting stage where salutes and performances where happening. It was so amazing to be part of all this. We stayed here for a while enjoying the performance and the great feeling around us.
Live performance of super heroes
For lunch, we found a small hipsterish café / restaurant called hiyori kitchen. Unfortunately I don’t have any pictures of the food or the place but you can see more on their facebook page here: https://www.facebook.com/HiyoriKitchen/
It was the perfect place for us to have lunch, there was a set menu and the food was both beautiful and delicious. The place was beautiful and everyone was really kind.
This picture is from the Restaurant’s official facebook page. Check it out by clicking on it.
At the end of the day we got back to the station and took our bus back to Sendai, but before, we still had time to buy our Ishinomaki manga themed cake souvenirs.
Our sweets for this trip, chocolate heroes
I was so happy to see a lively city, with so many things happening. There were parades, performances, people were eating out everywhere. I am really happy that we visited and I wish for this city to recover and return to being a wonderful place full of life.
Impressive view on our way back to Sendai
Ishinomaki is a little further from Matsushima on the Sanriku Coast. To get there you can take bus or train from Sendai. Train will take you through the Senseki Line during 90 minutes while buses, also from Sendai, will take 75 minutes and cost around 8 dollars.
Its main attractions are the Ishinomori Manga Museum, Hiyoriyama Park on the site of the former Castle and the Date clan boat Sant Juan Bautista near the coastal area. This boat is a replica of Spanish and Portuguese galleons built in Japan.
A great day trip from Sendai, but in my opinion should be done as a whole weekend trip. Specially for a family trip to visit the manga museum and explore the castle grounds as well as the nearby Tashirojima Island by boat.
What would I do differently
I wish we had reached the Ocean when we where walking through the area affected by the tsunami. I really wanted to embrace the feeling of how vulnerable we are when compared with Nature.
Also, I am a big fan of boat trips and getting to that small island further from the coast would have been really cool.
I am sorry for the delay for this post, today was the start of a future adventure that I will write about later.
For now, next post will be about Imonikai in Japan. Hope you’ll come back to read about it! じゃねー