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Ishidatami Village in Shikoku

HOME > Japan’s Local Treasures > Ishidatami Village in Shikoku


Explore the beautiful landscapes dotted with rice fields, wooden bridges, and watermills

Uchiko Town, Ehime Prefecture



Ishidatami village, about 15km north of Uchiko in Ehime Prefecture, Shikoku, is a perfect example of what Japanese people call satoyama. This word refers to a rural landscape that has been formed and maintained through long-term human interaction. For over 30 years, great effort has been made to preserve the terraced rice paddies and other rural elements of Ishidatami, which include traditional covered wooden bridges and old wooden water mills. In autumn, the maple trees turn stunning colors, making for even more picturesque scenery to be discovered while walking in the area.
There are a couple of key tourist spots to aim for. The first is Yuge Jinja Shrine, a Shinto place of worship built during the Muromachi period (1336-1573). To reach the shrine, you have to cross the 22-meter Taikobashi Covered Bridge. Many people visit each year to take photos, as the appearance of the bridge reflected in the pond is simply beautiful. The surroundings are gorgeously colored by plum and cherry blossoms in spring, iris flowers in early summer, and an array of colors in autumn.


Nearby is the Ishidatami Seiryuen Park, where 3 watermills have been reconstructed along the Fumoto River. There were once over 30 watermills along the river, which is also spanned by another covered wooden bridge. This beautiful green park has footpaths and a rest area. The watermill has become a symbol of rural culture in the Ishidatami district.


How to get there

IFly from Haneda Airport to Matsuyama Airport (about 1 hour 20 minutes), then take a limousine bus from Matsuyama Airport to JR Matsuyama Station (about 15 minutes). Next, take a train from JR Matsuyama Station to JR Uchiko Station (about 25 minutes), then take a taxi from JR Uchiko Station (25 minutes).


Shidatami, Uchiko-cho, Kita-gun, Ehime-ken


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