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A Day in Sakaiminato

Located in the western section of Tottori Prefecture, bordering Shimane Prefecture sits Sakaiminato, a port city with two major claims to fame: anime and crabs. The Matsuba crab commonly caught, served, and sold in this region is one of Tottori Prefecture’s culinary icons. Sakaiminato is also the hometown of Japanese manga artist and historian Shigeru Mizuki. Though Shigeru passed away in 2015, his legacy still lives on through his creations, which inhabit Sakaiminato’s streets.

  • A Day in Sakaiminato

    A Day in Sakaiminato

    As you wander through the city you’ll soon realize the impact of Shigeru’s work on the people of Sakaiminato. The city’s major road is named Mizuki Shigeru Road after the artist and it’s dotted with countless references to his work. Stretching 800 meters from JR Sakaiminato Station to Honmachi Arcade, the road is home to bronze statues of Shigeru’s characters as well as live characters in costume ready to welcome unsuspecting guests.

    A Day in Sakaiminato

    A Day in Sakaiminato

    While wandering down the anime populated main street, pay special attention to your surroundings as the real art of the Sakaiminato city’s homage to the manga icon is in the tiniest of details. Shigeru’s trademark anime eye image is carefully hidden in countless corners of the city. Visit the GeGeGe no Kitaro manga figurine shop located in the center of Sakaiminato to pick up some unique collectors’ items and keep a look out for the Shigeru-styled eyes above the door front.

    A Day in Sakaiminato

    A Day in Sakaiminato

    Mizuki Shigeru’s most famous work, the manga series GeGeGe no Kitaro was born in the 1960s and is most well known for popularising the Japanese folklore figures yokai, who are supernatural spirits most commonly referred to as demons. Since its incarnation, the story has been adapted into films, live action movies, and video games. To learn more about this fascinating local figure, be sure to visit the Mizuki Shigeru Museum located nearby. The museum houses exhibitions as well as motion pictures and most importantly a Japanese house diorama, which features yokai hiding inside.

    A Day in Sakaiminato

    A Day in Sakaiminato

    Once done exploring the spooky world of Shigeru, be sure to pay a visit to one of the city’s most iconic locations, the Chiyomusubi Sake Brewery also located on Mizuki Shigeru Road. Founded in 1865, they’re the only sake brewery in the city and everything here is crafted specifically with locally grown rice sourced from the Tottori area. If you feel so inclined, you can also sign up for a 20 to 30-minute brewery tour which takes guests through the sake making process and features a sake tasting session at the end. Reservations are required so be sure to book in advance.

    A Day in Sakaiminato

    A Day in Sakaiminato

    Signposted by a towering Kitaro statue, one of Shigeru’s most famous characters is the Nakaura Fish Market. Opening in 1992, today the bustling market is so popular it’s estimated to attract between 450 - 600 thousand visitors a year. It’s definitely worth visiting if you find yourself in Sakaiminato. As well as a wide range of seafood, the market is one of the most popular places to buy Matsuba crab, you can try it here or take it home fresh to cook yourself.

    A Day in Sakaiminato

    A Day in Sakaiminato

    If you’d rather have someone else cook for you, the best way to wrap up a visit through Sakaiminato city is by grabbing some dinner at Genki-tei. The restaurant is most well known for their dish kaisen-don (seafood over rice) featuring fish fresh off the boat.

    A Day in Sakaiminato

    A Day in Sakaiminato

    The best way to get to the area from nearby Tottori City is to catch the JR San-In Line Limited Express to Shin-Yamaguchi and switch to the Sakai Line at Yonago Station. This trip takes a little over two hours and costs About 3,440 yen. If coming you’re travelling by car from Shimane Prefecture, be sure to soak up the impressive views of Mt. Daisen and the harbor, and the city while crossing the bridge.

    Sakaiminato
    Address
    Tottori Pref. Sakaiminatoshi Taishoumachi
    Phone
    Mizuki Shigeru Memorial Museum
    rating 248 Reviews
    Address
    Tottori Pref. Sakaiminatoshi Honmachi 5
    Phone
    0859422171
  • sabo kuraya
    rating 15 Reviews
    Address
    Tottori Pref. Sakaiminatoshi Taishoumachi 131
    Phone
    0859423191
    Tairyo Market Nakaura Fisherman's Wharf (Union of Kansai Government's Regional Direct Sales Outlet)
    Address
    Tottori Pref. Sakaiminatoshi Takenouchidanchi 209
    Phone
    0859451600
    Genkitei
    rating 5 Reviews
    Address
    Tottori Pref. Sakaiminatoshi Taishoumachi 38
    Phone
    0859423551
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