Trip to Tohoku, Chubu and Chugoku in 2016 winter – Part 3, Kakunodate to Nagoya via Sendai and Yamadera

Most famous view of Yamadera
Most famous view of Yamadera

This post is continued from Trip to Tohoku, Chubu and Chugoku in 2016 winter – Part 2, Akita airport to Kakunodate.

On 3rd day of my trip, I left Kakunodate, visited Yamadera and then go to Nagoya. It was such a long day. But after I visited Yamadera, my mother took a flight from Sendai. I was a solo traveler. My trip was getting busier and busier. I squeezed the places as many as I could after Sendai.

Kakunodate to Sendai

Kakunodate 9:59 (Komachi 14) 11:29 Sendai

Before we left Kakunodate, we walked along Hinokinai river and in town too.

2016 winter Japan trip 173

2016 winter Japan trip 175

It was very quiet but in cherry blossom season, this place is one of the busiest places in Tohoku region. Huge number of cherry trees are along the dike of this river. The view is amazing.

We took Akita Shinkansen again to get Sendai.
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Sendai’s Beef Tongue for lunch

We had a lunch in Sendai station because there are very few restaurants open at Yamadera because of low season. And also I really want to eat Sendai’s most popular food. That was beef tongue. Sendai is well known as beef tongue town.

In Sendai station, there are four beef tongue restaurants. This place is called “Gyutan-dori” that means the street of beef tongue. In lunch time, it is busy. When I got there around 11:45, all four restaurants had line up. I pick up “Tanya Zenjiro” because the line up was the shortest.

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2016 winter Japan trip 190

I ordered regular beef tongue combo at 1,500 yen. It includes BBQ beef tongue, rice, beef tail soup and Tororoimo (a sort of grated yam potato).


My mother ordered beef tongue over the rice at 1,200 yen. Price range is not very affordable. But I was very satisfied by Sendai’s beef tongue. It was very yummy and worth spending money.


There are four beef tongue restaurants in Sendai station. All four restaurants are very well known restaurants in Sendai. You can pick any restaurants. The average price is not much different among these four restaurants too.

If you are interested in this “Beef Tongue Street”, exit Shinkansen central gate and turn right, and then turn right. You will see some restaurants. It is just a few steps away from the gate.

Trip to Yamadera

Kakunodate 13:01 (Senzan line rapid train) 13:57 Yamadera 16:16 (Senzan line rapid train) 17:13 Sendai

After we enjoyed beef tongue lunch at Sendai station, we got on local rapid train on Senzan line to Yamadera.

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2016 winter Japan trip 202

Yamadera is very famous temple where is located between Sendai and Yamagata. As you see my schedule above, it take one hour to get there form Sendai. If you access there from Yamagata, you also can take Senzan line and it takes about 15 to 20 minutes.

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Yamadera means Mountain Temple. This temple is located in the mountain. You can find the temple in the photo above.
Yamadera means Mountain Temple. This temple is located in the mountain. You can find the temple in the photo above.

This temple is called “Yamadera” but this is not a real name of this temple. The actual name of this temple is Risshaku-ji. You can access to this temple from JR Yamadera station by walk. There are lots of signage to Yamadera and you cannot miss it.

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2016 winter Japan trip 217

You can get the entrance in 10 minutes by walk from the station. But you have to hike up to get the main hall and view point. There are many many stairs.

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When we were there, lots of snow were left on the stairs and it was very slippery. My mother gave up to hike up.

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I spent 20 minutes to get the main hall. But I think most of you spend at least 30 minutes. Unfortunately many buildings were closed due to winter season. But I could see most famous spot in this temple. The view was gorgeous.

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2016 winter Japan trip 236

After we enjoyed this temple, we took Senzan line train again to go back to Sendai. My mother went to Sendai airport and took the flight to Osaka. One of my task was completed.

Yamadera station building
Yamadera station building
Yamadera station waiting room
Yamadera station waiting room
The stairs to the platform
The stairs to the platform
Yamadera station has only one platform.
Yamadera station has only one platform.

Sendai to Nagoya

Sendai 17:30 (Hayabusa 26) 19:04 Tokyo 19:33 (Hikari 531) 21:17 Nagoya

I just took two Shinkansen trains to get Nagoya. I wanted to get Nagoya by the end of this day. Because I wanted to start the trip to Magome and Matsumoto in early morning.

I do not have many things to tell you about this Shinkansen trip because it was just moving. But I had 30 minutes at Tokyo station. I usually go to the basement floor of Daimaru department store whenever I am in Tokyo station. I like to shop something to eat and drink there before on board. Especially in the evening, many stores try to sell the items as many as they can. I sometimes can find the food at half price.

At this time, I did not have enough time to find the good deal. But anyway I got a small bento box and beer. I enjoyed Japanese beer and bento at Shinkansen’s comfy seat.


After arrival Nagoya, I checked in the hotel just in front of the station.


In next post, I will show you day 4 of my trip, visiting Magome, Matsumoto, Shinano-Omachi, Itoigawa and Toyama.

6 thoughts on “Trip to Tohoku, Chubu and Chugoku in 2016 winter – Part 3, Kakunodate to Nagoya via Sendai and Yamadera”

  1. Thanks for your very informative travel reports! I learnt a lot from them.
    You say here “We had a lunch in Sendai station because there are very few restaurants open at Yamadera because of low season.” Do you remember if there are at least a few open? Doesn’t have to be haute cuisine, but more than just snacks. We’re going there in February and I had planned on having lunch there before or after visiting the temple.

    1. Hi Fenneke,

      As far as I saw, there were only two small cafe/restaurants nearby Yamadera station. It was so quiet and I saw a few tourists there. It’s not surprised if all restaurants are closed. I don’t think they can make a profit in low season. So please expect that all restaurants may be closed.


      Takeshi /

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