“Lover’s Sanctuary” with naturally formed heart-shaped hollow on the rock
“Heart hunting” trips in the season for love
Around 30-minute drive from the center of Sendai, Rairaikyo Gorge is a scenic spot that extends about one kilometer upstream and downstream on the Natori River. From the Nozokibashi Bridge situated at the entrance to the famous hot spring Akiu Onsen, you can look down to find a heart shape in the depression of a rock as it reflects light from the water!
What is the origin for the name “Rairaikyo Gorge”?
The kanji character for “rai’ in Rairaikyo Gorge means stones scattered about. The strangely shaped rocks and gigantic stones from volcanic tuff are called “Akiu Stone”. This gorge was named Rairaikyo Gorge in 1931. The person who named it was Mr. Toyotaka Komiya who at the time was an emeritus professor at Tohoku University. He was also a pupil of the author Natsume Soseki. At the foot of Nozokibashi Bridge, there is a walk along the gorge, and you can enjoy the beauty of the gorge such as the Shigure-taki Falls and the Hachiken-iwa Rock.
Looking down at the heart from the “Lover’s Sanctuary”
The heart shape in the depression of a rock is a heart mark that was made naturally. Nozokibashi Bridge that overlooks the heart shape is an arched bridge that is 32 meters long and 16 meters wide. With rumors like “standing here as a couple and looking at the heart together, you might find happiness” have spread, it is now a popular date spot and being called a “Lover’s Sanctuary”.
Zunda sweets – inspired from the past, rearranged for the modern
Zunda is a traditional Japanese confectionary from Sendai (in Northeast Japan). It is a green soybean paste that is mixed with sticky rice cake. Don’t forget to enjoy some unique Zunda sweets that have been arranged with a contemporary style during your trip.
Akiu Onsen, Sendai’s backyard
In the area of northern Honshu traditionally known as Oshu, Akiu Onsen is one of three famous hot springs, along with Naruko Onsen (Miyagi Prefecture) and Iizaka Onsen (Fukushima Prefecture). At Rairaikyo Gorge you can enjoy both sightseeing and bathing in the hot springs.
|Location/Access||Akiumachi Yumoto, Taihaku-ku, Sendai-shi
It is approximately 45 minutes by Airport Liner from Sendai Airport to Akiu Onsen. Alternatively, it is about 25 minutes by train from Sendai Airport to Sendai Station → 30 minutes by bus or car from Sendai Station to Akiu Onsen Yumoto.
|Inquiries||Akiu Onsen Tourist Information Center
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