Notsuke Peninsula – 野付半島
Today we will talk about Notsuke peninsula, located in eastern Hokkaidō, the northernmost island of Japan.
What’s special about Notsuke Peninsula?
Notsuke peninsula extends for 28 km and find its place between Nemuro and Shiretoko peninsulas. This piece of land resembles a folded shrimp.
Notsuke peninsula is also famous as the longest Japanese shoreline. This shoreline is made of sand carried by the stream which settles in calm waters. The shape is similar to a bird’s beak. The difference between a shoreline and a sandbank lies in the shoreline’s defined edge.
In Notsuke peninsula there are not many buildings nor people.
This unique, maybe gloomy landscape, gives a feeling of extreme distance from civilization.
This peninsula’s most famous spot in Todowara, where it is possible to see many withered fir trees. Actually, these plants died slowly because of sea’s saltwater.
How to get to Notsuke Peninsula
Notsuke peninsula is one of the hardest places to reach in Hokkaidō. Visiting this peninsula requires time and money.
Here I will explain how to reach it from Tōkyō.
Travelling by plane is the most comfortable way to get here. Nemuro Nakashibetsu Airport is a good start point, but since it is a small airport, plane tickets might get expensive in some periods and the flight availability is limited.
We suggest to rent a car at the airport, public transportation service is not very reliable. But in case, we suggest to travel by Akan buses’ Todowara-gō. The tickets for tourist bus, like the Todowara-gō, include a motorboat ride, on which you can behold the coast from offshore.
Other convenient options are available!
You can see the details on this websites, from Nakashibetsuku airport and Nemuro (in Japanese): http://tinyurl.com/m7jotnx
Todowara-gō tour: http://tinyurl.com/nl3sl2a
I visited Notsuke Peninsula in August, getting there by car from Nemuro. While having a break at Fūren Lake, I could see a “Tanchō” crane, the symbol bird of this region.
Once arrived at Notsuke Peninsula entrance, a long, straight road starts. In some stretches it is possible to see the sea from both sides, since the peninsula is very narrow. The sky was cloudy, but it is said that with a sunny day you can see mount Shari’s shape.
Going on, some Todowara zone’s withered fir trees appeared. Todowara gloomy landscape is impressive. Some people might feel sad while seeing these trees, but I think it’s worth the way since they are located in a very unusual scenery.
Going along the road, Todowara’s fir trees give way to green plains and fields full of deep yellow flowers.
I also came by a light house. Not many obstacles block the view, so once up the stairs I could see the surrounding edge-less landscape.
When the sky is clear it should be possible to see Habomai archipelago and also Kunashiri Island, one of the southern Kuril Islands (big islands belonging to Russia, strongly claimed by Japan).
I strolled along the beach, lost in my thoughts.
Notsuke is definitely an unknown tourist spot.
Since it’s hard to reach, visitors from nearby could be just few. Anyway, if you’re riding on a car between Nemuro and Shiretoko, why don’t you try to spend a couple hours here?
It’s therapeutic, I guarantee it!