Shimanto Area

Kochi, Shikoku

Japan's last pristine river is known for its rocky outcrops. You can enjoy the landscape from a tour boat or a tramcar.

The Shimanto-gawa River is famous as Japan's last pristine river. Beginning its 196-kilometer journey in the western Shikoku mountains around Mt. Irazu-yama, the river winds its way through the southwest of the prefecture, finally flowing into the Pacific Ocean at Shimoda, Shimanto City. Because rich forests cover the river's headwaters, and there are no dams, pure water flows along the entire length of the river. One of the characteristics of the bridges spanning the Shimanto-gawa River is that they have no guardrails. This is to reduce resistance and to prevent the bridge from being washed away during the times of flood.

Around Nakamura, where the river broadens and slows, you can view ancient fishing techniques, which have been passed down from generation to generation. One such technique seen is "To-ami" - throwing a cast net over a school of Ayu fish. Another is called "Hiburi-ryo" - a night-fishing technique where flaming torches carried on fishing boats are waved aboved the water to drive the fish into nets. This technique is used only during fall.


From Tokyo:
[Air] 1h 20 min from Haneda to Kochi Ryoma Airport, and 40 min from the airport to JR Kochi Station by bus.
[Rail] 3h 20 min from Tokyo to Okayama Station by JR Tokaido-Sanyo Shinkansen Line, and 2h 30 min from Okayama to Kochi Station by JR Seto-ohashi Dosan Line. 1h 40 min from Kochi station to Nakamura station on the JR Tosa Kuroshio Line
From Osaka:
[Air] 40 min from Itami or Kansai International Airport to Kochi Ryoma Airport.
[Rail] 40 min from Shin-Osaka to Okayama Station by Shinkansen.

Around the Shimanto Area