Situated on the Shikoku Island, Matsuyama is easily accessible by ferries from Oita and Hiroshima.
Perhaps influenced by the numerous of onsens in the area, Matsuyama is a peaceful and relaxed city. Most of the city shuts down after sun goes down, making it highly enjoyable to stroll the city at night. It’s also dramatically cooler and comfortable in the evenings without the beaming sun.
There’s plenty to do in the city, with an abundance of galleries and museums.
The imposing Matsuyama Castle is an interesting sight to see in the morning, before the heat and crowd becomes unbearable.
But the main thing that drew me to Matsuyama is the famous Dogo Onsen. As one of the oldesnt onsens in Japan, dating back to the 1890’s it’s also the bath house that inspired one of my favourite movies Spirited Away. The fan girl inside me just had to see it and was excited to learn it’s still a fully operating bathhouse!
Matsuyama is efficiently connected with trams. It’s 160 yen per ride regardless of the number of stops. If you think you’ll be travelling around a lot for a day, think about getting a one-day pass for 500 yen. This allows for unlimited travel for a single day.