Cycling in Hiruzen-kogen Heights (Maniwa City)

cycling in hiruzen

Hola amigos. It’s Mr. Wada back on duty. Let me share our day of cycling in Hiruzen-kogen Heights.

Cycling in Hiruzen-Kogen Heights (Maniwa City)

Hiruzen is in Maniwa City, Northern Okayama Prefecture. Many Okayamanians visit this place for camping, hiking and cycling with full of nature!

 

Information

Hiruzen-Kogen Heights Cycling Route

It is a 29-km trail with less ups & downs compared to other routes in Okayama Prefecture, which is ideal for beginners.

 

Rental bikes are available at cycling stations or stores in Hiruzen. Kaiyukan Onsen offers 200 yen per 30 minutes for regular bikes and 300 yen/30 minutes for mountain bikes. Let the cycling begin! Our plan is to go clockwise and come back.

 

Breezy!

 

Sakura trees in bloom in May? What a surprise (they are already all greenish in Okayama City).

 

Follow this sign or the blue line so you won’t get lost.

 

So-called panorama area. Indeed the surroundings are quite something.

 

Break time. There are small stops to have a seat on the way.

 

Gotta go through some sloops…..(pant pant)

 

Going along the river. It would’ve been nicer earlier with sakura trees.

 

Now we encountered Hiruzen-Kogen center joyful park (sorta theme park).

 

And there goes Wood Pao over there. We wanted to have something for lunch but a long lineup would take us like an hour, so we decided to get back to the start point and eat there instead.

 

Second half was rather easy with mild ups & downs. We were glad we finished the other part first.

 

Passing our campground. (Naka Hiruzen Auto Camping Ground)

 

Almost there.

 

We made it in an hour! Oh well…..(pant pant)

 

We returned the bikes and had very nice Genghis Khan (grilled lamb) lunch at a restaurant next door. Soooooooooooooo yummy! Oh boy. it really made our day.

 

After lunch we took a bath at Kaiyukan Onsen (in the same building). So this place is designed perfectly for cyclists! Cheers.

 

Let’s call it a day.

 

Lastly

How do you find it? Since Hiruzen is upper part of Okayama Prefecture, it really feels great to hang out in spring and even summer. Please swing by if you get a chance.

See you around!

Cafe at Yoshida Mountain: Mo-an (Kyoto)

Cafe at Yoshida mountain mo-an Kyoto

Hi there. It’s Mr. Wada back on duty. I would like to introduce Mo-an cafe this time.

Cafe at Yoshida Mountain: Mo-an (Kyoto)

Mo-an is located right on top of Mt. Yoshida. Mountain though it is just 105 meter high, so it’s not like for climbing but for a little hiking. Walk up the hill and have cappa joe, sounds great, doesn’t it?

 

A Path to the Cafe

Get off the city bus at Kyodai-seimon-mae (in front of Kyoto University) and walk down towards the Yoshida Shrine.

Reference: https://www2.city.kyoto.lg.jp/kotsu/webguide/files/tikabusnavi/en_tikabusnavi_2.pdf

 

Which way to go? Take a right and continue walking.

 

Go go go!

 

Passing through Torii gates.

 

We encountered a small park. Continue straight until you see a sign of Moan.

 

Here we are finally.(pant pant…)

 

Cafe Mo-an

Apparently there used to be 8 tea rooms and 1 pantry in this mountain in the Meiji era. Now the pantry remains as a cafe after being renovated, and two tea rooms are still used as well.

 

Take off your shoes and go up stairs.

 

Tada. Looks spacier than I thought it would be. Oh, it has window seats on both sides!

 

We got these window seats on the right.

 

You could see Kyoto central from the window.

 

A cup of iced coffee for me and a piece of cake and a latte for Mrs. Wada.

 

Ceiling and even the floor are made of Japanese cypress which is supposedly lux (this wood is often used for onsen bath tabs). Very shiny and cool huh?

 

OK, let’s call it a day.

 

Information

Name Mo-an (茂庵)
Access 8 kaguraoka-cho, Yoshida, Sakyoku, Kyoto
Business Hours

11:30 – 18:00

Closed: Mondays, during new year holidays, summer (Aug 17th – 31st)

Contact 075-761-2100
Website www.mo-an.com

 

Tips:
We figured that entering the mountain from North would be easier to access the cafe later on. If that’s the case, get off the city bus at Kita-Shirakawa. But we also enjoyed the route passing through Yoshida Shrine as well. You could get out from the North exit like we did as well. There are suggested routes by the cafe as well. Also you can check if the cafe is busy on this page.

 

Lastly

How do you find it? Location wise it was overwhelming but definitely worth a visit! Take a visit while in Japan!

See you around!