Day 8: Shimanami Island hopping

When life gives you lemons, ride on. The plan today was to circumnavigate three Seto Inland Sea islands, Ikuchi, Innoshima and Mukaishima.

This would involve crossing bridges on the Shimanami Kaido six times.You can see below the six bridge climbs, and another blip thrown in for good measure.

The climbs to the bridge have been well engineered with each access path around 1.1 km long and climb averages of around 3.1-3.4 per cent.

The view from the bridge connecting Omishima and Ikuchi islands showed the promise of another brilliant day. It was about 7.45 am when this photo was taken.

On each bridge there has been information on each bridge and the Shimanami Kaido.

The lemon comment and photo explanation. Ikuchi Island is known as the lemon island of Japan, with a mild climate and low annual rainfall, combined with their sloping terrain ensures the lemons receive constant sunlight creating a perfect citrus growing environment. Ikuchi is the top producer of lemons in Japan with around 600 orchards.

The island is not that big, so that is a huge concentration of lemon orchards.

The lemon statue was at the resting spot below, which provided a great view of the bridge we had just crossed.

Whilst I waited for Tony at out first pit stop, I took a better look at this vending machine. Stunned female cyclist, but on the front, information that the proceeds help to prevent cyclists paying a toll to use the bridges.

Interesting. We had noted the motor cycles (125cc and below can use the cycling lane) pay a toll of 50 yen per bridge. Money goes into a shute at the end.

Searching for coffee, we held out a glimmer of hope at Sunset Beach where there were heaps of bicycles set up to be rented.

Sunset Beach was quite nice. It had just been raked over with piles of sea debris being collected in a small truck.

No coffee. I suspect we were a bit early. I did find this character though.

Over the road was this old bus that had seen better days.

Making our way onto the bridge between Ikuchi and Innoshima.

This chap was interesting. We passed him on the road as he merrily roller bladed along, and did not think too much of it at the time.

However, as we headed back on our return route hours later, here he was a few bridges up still rollerblading. He appears to have done the kaido on rollerblades.

We could not pass the albino dinosaur without a quick snap.

The bridge between Innoshima and Mukaishima islands has the bike path under the vehicles. A totally seperate under structure.

Looking at the bridge from the side, you can make out the bike path below the vehicle route. Clever engineering again.

We were closing in on Ominichi, and passed this nice beach, then red bridge.

Ominichi, to cross or not to cross? There were multiple ferry options but we decided this was close enough. There is a cable car going up to a viewing platform in this image.

One of the ferry options.

Lunchtime! We stopped at a larger supermarket named Halow. I went in and was blown away by the fish section and wish I’d brought the camera in.

I grabbed some nice strawberries and grapes, and had such a hard time choosing from the many options in the sushi area.

The choice of Japanese cooking items was massive and so many I’d like to take home, but obviously on a bike a bit of a no go, and I could see myself ending up on the Border Security show playing dumb like most of them do 🤣🤣

You could hardly miss this guy in a corner. It’s purpose and intent was unclear. But King Kong dominated.

Then the song Science Fiction from the Rocky Horror Picture Show got stuck in my head….”But he told us where we stand, then something went wrong, for Fay Wray and King King, they got caught in a celluloid jam…”

The islands continued, remembering there are around 3000.

A quiet narrow road, this is a two way road.

Finally after 88 plus km, back on Omishima Island for the night.

We have been truly lucky with the weather the last few days. The sunscreen has come out, and we both have farmer arms and tanned legs. My glove marks are hilarious. I have white hands, but half my fingers are very brown almost looking dirty. From the half fingerless gloves.

We leave here tomorrow riding about 14 km to catch a ferry and do most of the Tobishima Kaido, a lesser known cycle route around the islands.

Dinner tonight was a selection of sushi and sashimi as there are no restaurants around this village.

We are ready for bed. Thankyou for reading .

Smile on 😊❣️

2 thoughts on “Day 8: Shimanami Island hopping

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