The resort of Atami is famous as a place for healing and relaxation: there are thermal springs here, which are more than popular mainly among the Japanese. Locals like to come to Atami for the weekend or even for a complete vacation. The town is perfectly located for this, it stands on the very seashore, but on the same island of Honshu as Tokyo. Some mass holidays and festivals are often held here – in particular, the annual fireworks festival on the water, so the atmosphere in the city is always light, bright and carefree. True, this property also has a downside: for weekends and holidays, hotels in Atami are booked months in advance, and usually they are packed to capacity. Check ANDYEDUCATION.COM to learn more about the country of Japan.
Today, Atami is one of the top three Japanese beach and thermal resorts.
How to get to Atami
Atami is located about 100 km southwest of Tokyo, it does not have its own airport, so it is most convenient and fastest to get on the ultra-high-speed and somewhat Martian Japanese trips. In particular, from the central Tokyo railway station Shinagawa (which, by the way, also accepts express trains from Narita Airport), Tokaido Shinkansen trains leave every hour, the ticket price is about 6000 JPY. The second option is on a regular train, but you will spend about 1.5 hours on the way (6 departures per day).
All these trips are included in the Japan Rail Pass.
Atami grew up on flat slabs of volcanic lava, on a caldera near Sagami Bay. In fact, the city is located on the territory of the Fuji-Hakone-Izu National Park. Mountain slopes protect it from continental winds, and the coast is washed by the warm Kuroshio current, which is why it has hot summers and short winters. Already from the 8th c. Atami became known as a thermal resort. At a time when the capital was still old Edo, the entire territory of the Izu Peninsula belonged to the Tokugawa shogunate. Atami acquired the status of the city in 1894. In 1923, after a strong earthquake, a 35 m high tsunami rolled over the city, causing significant destruction, so that the city in its modern form was formed around 1937. In 1950, the Japanese authorities recognized it ” city of international tourism and culture”, which caused an increase in the number of hotels and the rapid development of the region as a whole.
In Atami in 1949, the third largest yakuza group in the country, Inagawa, arose.
Atami Attractions and Attractions
In total, there are four thermal springs in Atami: in fact, the famous Atami, Iju-san, Zu-Yugawara and Ajiro. In the very center of the city, near the railway station, the hot geyser Oyu beats. In addition to thermal springs, the city has another equally popular attraction – an orchard, which covers an area of more than 30 thousand square meters. m. More than 700 old plums grow here. In the middle of our winter, in February, all these amazing trees come to life. At this time, the city hosts a celebration of admiring the flowering of trees, and the number of foreign and local tourists jumps at times. In the same season, a large crowd of people is observed in Himenosawa Park, where azaleas and cherry blossoms bloom in lush color. You can get to the park from the station by bus (about 45 minutes).
It will be interesting and informative to visit the City Art Museum. The museum is under the patronage of the Shinto community and has an extensive collection of masterpieces of national painting, engraving, pottery, calligraphy, decorative and applied objects made of lacquered wood – about 3,500 exhibits in total. Here is a large part of the collection of the eccentric multimillionaire and religious leader Mokishi Okada. A small theater has also been opened here, because theatrical art in the country is revered on a par with any other. Nearby is a tea hut where ceremonies are held, where you can simply attend and try to brew tea yourself, as it should be. The museum can be reached by free shuttle bus from the railway station in 10 minutes.
From time immemorial, Atami was also famous for onsen geishas – that is, geishas who entertain vacationers at the resort sources.
Other interesting places in the city are, for example, a natural park with a cactus greenhouse for more than a thousand “cactus places”, birds, monkeys and a crocodile nursery. Chimpanzee shows are held here several times a day. You can also visit Atami Palace, which was built in 1959 in the Momoyama architectural style. This building is about 160 m high with an observation terrace on the roof, inside of which the Museum of the Samurai Way of Life is located.
Particularly curious is the Museum for adults – “Hinokan”, that is, the Museum of Sex. It is right in front of the Atami Palace and can be reached by both regular and cable cars. The museum’s curious collection includes both rather old exhibits and high-tech novelties, including holograms. Entrance to the museum for persons under 18 years of age is prohibited.
Three kilometers south of the railway station is the Rose and Herb Park, which includes three different gardens and is planted with approximately 100,000 plants and 5,000 rose bushes. The Japanese style garden has one of the largest bonsai trees in the country. It is impossible not to pay attention to Atami and the statue of Omiya and Kan-ichi (a girl and a guy), which is on the northern edge of the city beach. The plot of the monument is taken from the classic novel by the famous Japanese writer of the late 19th century. Koyo Ozaki.
To take good photos of the city and the coast, it is best to get to the Jogasaki suspension bridge, which is raised 40 m above sea level. The viewing platform near the Akao Hotel is also suitable for this.
In the vicinity of Atami there are also quite interesting places. The Izu Peninsula, at the beginning of which stands Atami, has long been considered one of the most picturesque places in the country for outdoor recreation, and its proximity to the main cities makes it one of the most visited by the Japanese. The background for the landscapes of Izu is Mount Fuji, which is about 70 km from the same Atami.
If you focus on hotels and bedroom development, then Atami is actually combined with Ito: these two resorts are separated by only 15 km, and it is difficult to understand where one ends and the other begins. The Matsu-kawa River flows through Ito, near which a local spring is located, throwing out more than 30 thousand liters of hot water every minute. There are several museums here, including the 20th century Ikeda Museum, whose collections are devoted to modern painting on the theme of “Man”, as well as the Music Box Museum, which exhibits ancient mechanisms from around the world – a total of about 80 musical instruments.
South of Ito stretches the picturesque coast of Irozaki, relatively virgin and untouched, with picturesque cliffs, precipices and wild beaches. Wonderful views of it open from the water, during a boat trip (the cruise lasts about 25 minutes, departure from Ito every half hour). Even further south along the coast, completely unexplored places begin: for example, the most beautiful Cape Tarai, 8 km east of Irozaki, can only be reached along a footpath through the forest. Another scenic stretch of coastline is Yogasaki, which can be reached via the Kadowakizaki Suspension Bridge, which is 23 meters long and 48 meters high. You need to walk here for about 3 km.
3 things to do in Atami:
- Climb the cable car to the crater of a dormant volcano to have lunch with eggs boiled with your own hands here, on the spot, in a hot underground spring.
- Take a ferry to Himenosawa, an entire resort island covered with lush subtropical vegetation.
- Try one of the many wasabi dishes: the Izu Peninsula is considered one of the largest wasabi producers in the country.