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February 12, 2016 - Naruto to Toya
For today, I started the day in Naruto which is known mainly for it's whirlpools caused by deep water and high water inflow through the Seto sea. My hotel was also on Ogi Island which means that I could virtually walk to the Naruto Whirlpool boat - if the first one I tried to buy a ticket from wasn't cancelled.
For today, I visited the following locations in order
(1) Naruto Whirlpools
(2) Otsuka Museum of Art
(3) Bentenyana Shrine
(4) Byodo-ji Temple
(5) Hikasa Turtle Museum
(6) Yakuo-ji Temple
(7) Toyo Surf Beach
If you wish to see more specific details specific locations - they can be viewed here: https://www.google.com/maps/d/edit?mid=zp0MtAJdtIro.kbCMDMM0L_yY&usp=sharing
If you wish to watch the whirlpools at Naruto - then your best bet is to catch one of the different boats that take you close to where the action is. Normally there is one boat every 30-40 minutes (boat tour lasts roughly 30 minutes) but I was unlucky to find that the boat I planned on catching was cancelled. As such - I had to drive a few minutes away to catch a boat from another company in another close port (not walking distance).
The boat that I caught cost 1800 yen per person - but the most important thing to do is to check both the dates and times as some days have much stronger currents.
These websites tell you the best time to view the whirlpools
The Oksuka Museum of Art shows many of the world's best pieces of art as reproductions and is located right next to Naruto Park. This large art museum costs 3,240 yen and will be overwhelming in size to most people who only have a mild interest in art. For me - I only have a slight interest in art and I'm happy I saw this after the art islands as I'm now SICK OF ART!
Bentenyama Shrine is located in outer Tokushima and was visited as it was "kind of on the way". It's a nice enough shrine - although it's nothing special....
Byodo-ji Temple is one of the 88 temples along the Shikoku temple pilgrimage and is nice in it's own way. The one thing I'm liking about the temples in Shikoku is their main gates which are more Japanese than Chinese in historical terms.
Hiwasa Turtle museum costs 600 yen to enter and is kind of in the middle of no-where. In front of the museum is a large sandy beach and it also held a large conference in the 1980's in relation to - you guessed it - turtles! There is an English pamphlet with some information but basically all of the exhibits are in Japanese which is kind of expected for a rural Shikoku museum.
Yakuo-ji Temple is located reasonably close to the Turtle museum and as can be seen - they were pulling down matsuri stalls after the previous days National Holiday. This temple is also one of the larger ones and it's car park/s seem to be bigger than almost every temple I have seen in Shikoku as of yet.
After a long day of driving, I ended up finishing the day speaking to an American Surfer Chick on Toyo Surf beach who works in Kansai. As I was now in Kochi, the beach now abuts the Pacific Ocean which means bigger swell or decent surfing. The only main problem was the large number of locals who were also doing just the same thing as her!
For tomorrow, I will be driving between Toyo and Yasu which is near Kochi. I was hoping to get accommodation in Kochi - but a marathon meant that basically no accommodation was available in the entire city!