The jewel of northeastern Japan, Miyagi’s capital, Sendai is a mere 90 minutes from Tokyo Station by Shinkansen bullet train. Miyagi is known for magnificent sights, including the scenic islands of Matsushima Bay; delicious produce, including rice, sake, tuna, oysters, beef tongue, and Zunda sweets; and bountiful nature, from the mountains to the Pacific coast. Rated highly for water temperature and spring quality, the hot springs in Miyagi Prefecture represent some of the best hot springs in Japan.
Tokyo to Sendai: Approximately 90 minutes by Shinkansen
Sendai to Shiogama: Approximately 17 minutes by train
Shiogama to Matsushima: Approximately 8 minutes by train
Sendai to Matsushima: Approximately 45 minutes by train
The City of Trees
Readily accessible from both within in Japan as well as from abroad via Shinkansen and direct international flights, respectively, Sendai is a verdant city with tree-lined streets downtown, and abundant greenery in the suburbs a short distance from the city center. Here you can enjoy festivals in the summer, illumination in the winter, and food and shopping all year round. Try unique local dishes, including beef tongue and Zunda (sweetened mashed green soybean) desserts.
Explore traditional ‘izakaya’ (Japanese-style pubs), with a bar-hopping master introducing local favorites. Enjoy local Japanese nightlife, food and drink, and culture and traditions.
Experience Japan's Showa era on backstreets like Bunka Alley and Iroha Alley. Visit quaint bars and swap stories over drinks as you take your Japan travel experience to the next level.
The World's No. 1 Town for Sushi
Just 30 minutes from Sendai by train, this port town handles the most fresh tuna in Japan, and many first-rate sushi shops renowned for freshness and skilled preparation. Japan’s Agency for Cultural Affairs has designated 15 buildings within Shiogama Shrine as Important Cultural Properties. Within the shrine complex, you’ll find Shiwahiko Shrine—home to the guardian of agriculture. In spring, this is the only place you can see the famous Shiwahiko Sakura—a natural treasure.
A major fishing port, Shiogama offers top-quality sushi as well as high-quality Japanese sake, with three prestigious breweries producing sake for the sacred Shiogama Shrine.
On this foodie tour you will experience the local food and culture of Shiogama including sake. The tour features a lecture on sake appreciation and a delicious sushi lunch.
Relish a tasty bento lunch and local sake while relaxing beneath lovely Shiogama-zakura cherry trees designated as national treasures. This spring, eat, drink, and be merry below the large pink blossoms within Shiogama Shrine. Here, you’ll experience a live shamisen performance as part of this unique local activity in Shiogama City, just 30 minutes from Sendai.Learn More
Scenic Beauty for All Four Seasons
The Green Guide Japan rates Matsushima ★★★ (Highly Recommended)—its highest rating. Must-see sights include the grand Zuiganji Temple, built in 1609, Entsūin Temple, noted for its moss, rock, and rose gardens, Matsushima Bay, and the scenic views around Matsushima Bay.
Stroll across the curved red bridge to Godaido Temple—the symbol of Matsushima—built on an islet next to the pier. Take sightseeing cruises around Matsushima Bay, or enjoy the trails crisscrossing the pine forest on Fukuurajima Island.
Located close to Sendai, Matsushima Bay—one of Japan's three top scenic spots—is a famous sightseeing destination. It's also rich in oysters. On this guided tour, you'll harvest and eat raw oysters, relish an all-you-can-eat oyster lunch and see local life on the pine-clad islands.Learn More
A Unique Summer Overnight Excursion from Sendai City
The Omagari Fireworks Festival—an intense competition among Japan’s best fireworks creators—will be the highlight of your summer. Forget about the traffic on this chartered roundtrip bus excursion from Sendai. Stop for a tasty lunch at Ainono Onsen along the way, then enjoy over 20,000 fireworks and festival stalls offering traditional street food and games.Learn More