Continuation of our Ise-Shima adventure!
After lunch in Ebiya, we went back to the Ujiyamada Station to go to Meoto Iwa. When we arrived at the Futamino-Ura Station, we could really feel the rural life. There was no machine for us to insert our ticket as we headed towards the exit. Instead, there was an old man who checked our ticket. After exiting the station, there was no vehicle even on the main road. It was a good thing there was a local who we could ask for directions going to Meoto Iwa. He only spoke Japanese but his directions using his hands (even including Y gesture to signal the fork road) were very clear.
We walked for about 20 minutes before we finally arrived by the seaside. I was expecting to enjoy the scenery but the wind was really strong… strong enough to pull up my hoodie!
We went inside Futamiokitama Shrine, which is generously decorated with frogs of different sizes.
After braving the strong wind, we finally saw the famous MEOTO IWA (“Wedded Rocks”). It is said that the larger rock represents the husband while the smaller one is the wife, and this couple is actually a representation of Izanagi and Izanami, the gods who created Japan.
It may not look as majestic as the ones in photos seen online, but they say that the best time to go here is during high tide and sunrise – get to see the sun rising between the two rocks. These rocks, connected by Shimenawa rope (Shinto sacred rope), are also considered as a symbol of marriage.
If you are into drainspotting, do not miss the manhole cover in this area which showcases Meoto Iwa.
When we got back in Ujiyamada Station, we had to purchase tickets back to Osaka. We did not purchase this beforehand since we were not sure what time we will finish our adventure in Ise-Shima. We somehow regretted it because ticket price per person was around 2,000 or 3,000+ yen. We also made a mistake of boarding the wrong train (1 minute earlier than ours!!) so we had to pay an extra fee.
The train is called Premium Express Shimakaze. It definitely looked and felt premium than the train we rode in the morning – reclining chair, automated window blinds… We even got a boarding certificate to commemorate our ride.
Lesson learned: Japanese trains arrive on the dot unless they announce otherwise. Who would have thought that that train which arrived 1 minute earlier is indeed different from the one we should have boarded. Oh well.
For our last dinner during this trip, we decided to go to HONKE SHIBATO, a restaurant famous for its eel dishes. The restaurant is 300+ years old so their quality is definitely something to be trusted. If you are on a budget, definitely skip this place then. We both got the Osaka Mamushi, which costs ¥2,730 per order. It was my first time to eat eel and their unagi definitely did not disappoint.
The staff was really nice and they even offered to take our picture outside the shop. 🙂
Next post is our last day in Japan. T_T