Tajima: Northern Hyogo Prefecture
Tajima, or "The Taj", is on the Sea of Japan side of Hyogo Prefecture. (Hyogo is highlighted in the map to the right.) Previously a collection of small towns, recent and ongoing gappei(town mergers) have created 4 very large, rural cities. Tajima is a great place for the outdoor or cultural adventurer. Tajima is known for its beaches, onsen and ski resorts, as well as Tajima beef, snow crab and Izushi soba. It is also nationally recognized for the preservation of the endangered White Oriental Storks.
Life in "The Taj"
What's so special about Tajima? We've put it all down in a little booklet called the Taj Living Guide. Originally intended to help new JETs get their bearings, its also a great read on what there is for visitors to do and see. Get a glimpse of the beautiful place you'll be visiting and learn more about the Taj here.
Accessing the Tajima Dome
Perhaps the easiest way to access the Tajima Dome is by bus. Buses run regularly between the dome and Ebera Station (江原駅). A schedule is available that shows the times and drop off locations.
Tajima Access: Planes, Trains and Automobiles
Tajima is accesible via JR, Zentan bus, car and even plane!
It is highly recommended to come to the tournament by car, if possible. Free parking will be available at both the Tajima Dome and the Lodge Utopia.
Take the BANTAN motorway (¥1400 one-way for a regular car and ¥1100 for a K) or Route 312 (free). Head north to WADAYAMA-CHO (now part of Asago-shi). If you take the BANTAN, you will take it until the Wadayama Exit (the last one!). When you get to the first light after the toll gate, turn right onto 312.
In Wadayama: At the intersection with the McDonald's ahead on your left, continue going straight. Follow this road for about 15-20 minutes passing through Yabu-shi. When you come to a Y intersection with a bridge that forks to the left (signs say "to Izushi/Toyooka") cross the bridge and you will be back on 312.
Stay on this road and pass 2 Lawsons. Soon after the 2nd Lawsons you will come to a traffic light and a border sign for Toyooka City. The road forks here - stay to the left and go through the Asakura tunnel. You will pass through one more tunnel. After the second tunnel you will go through one set of traffic lights. Pass by a sign on your left for EAT Value Supermarket. At the second set of traffic lights (intersection named "Nyou" with route 482)make a left onto 482.
You will now be driving on the same road through rice paddies for approxiamately 5 km. To give you some landmarks to look for: You will pass through one tunnel, drive under a lighted highway announcement board, go through one set of lights and pass an elementary school on your left. At the second set of lights, go straight. You will pass a Le Jardin coffee shop and a tobacco store. Next, there will be a JA-SS gas station and the 3rd set of lights. Continue going straight. After the 3rd set of lights, the road starts a steady incline. You will pass the Uemura Naomi Museum on your left and go through a 4th set of lights. Then, you will pass the Tanida Restaurant on your right. About 2 minutes later you will come to the 5th set of lights. Turn right here (there is a stone statue/gravemarker store at the intersection on the righthand side). This road will soon start another incline. Go through the Kiyotaki Tunnel. Follow this road until it comes to a T junction. At the T, turn left. If you are going straight to the Dome, turn left at the Y intersection (it is the 2nd possible left from the T). The Dome will be a few hundred meters up on your left. If you are going to the lodge/camp site, do not turn left - continue along the same road (right side of the Y).
FOR LODGE: You will see a very large green billboard for Uenohira/Kitakabe on the right. At the bottom left of the sign there is a small mention of Lodge Utopia. Turn right directly after the sign. You will go down through a short tunnel. After the tunnel the road heads uphill again and you will see a large gravel lot on the left side with a sign for Lodge Utopia (in English). The Lodge is the large building at the far side of the parking lot.
FOR CAMP SITE: Continue following this road straight (it will curve around to the left). Pass a go-cart area on your left and then turn left into the parking lot at the end of the go-cart course. The camping areas will be directly ahead of you.
Head west on Route 9 to WADAYAMA-CHO (now part of Asago-shi). At the intersection with the McDonald's ahead on your right, turn right and follow this road for about 10 minutes through Yabu-shi. When you come to a bridge that forks to the left (signs say "to Izushi/Toyooka") cross the bridge and you will be back on 312. Start following the directions above from the mention of the 2 Lawsons.
Head east on Route 9 to YOKA-CHO (now part of Yabu-shi) until you come to a large intersection with signs for Route 6. Drive along Route 6 for about 5 minutes until you reach the Route 312 T-intersection with signs to Kannabe Heights (There will be a Mobil Station ahead on your left). Turn left here and go straight on this road for about 10-15 minutes. The road will bend to the left and then you can follow the first set of directions above from the mention of the 2 Lawsons.
NOTE: The BANTAN is accesible via the CHUUGOKU and SANYO motorways and the HIMEJI BYPASS. The on-ramp is just east of central Himeji.
BY TRAIN (all JR)
Tajima is serviced by the Sanyo and Bantan JR Lines. The closest station to the tournament venue is EBARA. Express trains from Osaka, Sannomiya/Kobe, Akashi and Himeji depart about every hour to hour and a half. Express trains from the Kansai cities are called HAMAKAZE and KITAKINKI. It is also possible to take local trains on the BANTAN line, departing from Himeji or the SANYO line, departing from Fukuchiyama. On the local train, you must change trains at Teramae and Wadayama Stations. After April, we will post the update train schedules here.
|Express Costs and Time (One Way)|
|Departure City||Travel Time||Reserved Ticket (¥)||Unreserved Ticket (¥)|
|Osaka||approx 3 hours||5130||4620|
|Sannomiya/Kobe||approx 2 hrs 45 min||4390||3880|
|Akashi||approx 2 hrs 15 min||4080||3570|
|Himeji||approx 1 hrs 30 min||3070||2560|
|Tottori||approx 2 hrs 30 min||2870|
|Fukuchiyama||approx 45 min||2200|
|Local Costs and Time (One Way)|
|Departure City||Travel Time||Ticket Cost (¥)|
|Himeji||approx 2-3 hours||1620|
|Tottori||approx 3 hours||1620|
|Fukuchiyama||approx 1 hour||950|
ZENTAN bus service runs several buses a day to the Tajima area.
- OSAKA Hankyu Sanbangai - HIDAKA Shokokaikanmae: This bus costs ¥3250 (one way) and takes about 3 hours. The last bus departs Osaka at 13:20.
- SANNOMIYA - HIDAKA Shokokaikanmae: This bus costs ¥2850 (one way) and takes about 3 hours. The last bus leaves Sannomiya at 17:10.
Toyooka is home to a small airport called "Kounotori Airport" or "Tajima Airport". Flights leave twice daily to and from Osaka Itami Airport and take about 30 minutes one way. Please be advised that there are only 30 seats available on each flight. Flights depart once in the morning and once in the early evening. Exact flight times will be posted in May.
There are three types of airfares. You may want to talk to your local travel agent to see if you can get a discount for a connecting flight to Itami.
- HAYAWARI 21: ¥6300 one way. *must be booked at least 21 days before departure
- TOKUTEIBIN 1: ¥6800 one way. *must be booked at least 6 days before depature
- NORMAL PRICE: ¥10300 one way