When I heard there was a giant milk carton building in Hiroshima it was music to my ears as I am always looking for new and interesting places to visit in a part of Japan where the two main sights (the A-Bomb Dome and Miyajima) tend to dominate the majority of posts and videos about the area.
What I didn’t take into consideration at first though was how far and wide Hiroshima Prefecture is. The likes of Onomichi and Okunoshima (a.k.a. Rabbit Island) are nearly two hours east of the city centre but they are still served by regular trains. However, venture north of the centre and things do become more limited and need a bit more adavanced planning.
That is why I was already at Hiroshima station just after 5:30 am in early January to ensure I made the very limited connections I needed. The Geibi Line from there headed north on a bitterly cold morning taking about two hours to get to Miyoshi station in the north of the prefecture which is only about 20 kilometres away from Shimane Prefecture.
The same train at Miyoshi then became the Fukuen Line that headed east for 20 minutes to Mirasaka which is the closest station to the milk carton building. Had I missed that connection it would have been nearly a five hour wait till the next one was in operation but thankfully it all churned out fine for me!
It was a ten minute walk basically following the train track from Mirasaka and my face lit up when I first caught sight of the milk carton building protruding above the other low-rise houses in the area.
As the title says, this building really is a family-owned milk shop which has been providing mainichi gyunyu (daily milk) to the residents of the rural town for nearly four decades.
The blue, white and red building is shaped and coloured to look like the real cartons of Mainichi milk which one can buy in and around that region of Japan.
As it was only 8am when I was present there was no sign of life from the family living on site or indeed anyone in the town. A few cars went by without too much care for what I was looking at. Speed by and this unique building is pasteurized before you can even see it!
As you may have noticed, this milk post consists of pretty much the same shot but just from a multitude of angles when one photo would probably be sufficient! I sure am milking it for all it’s worth!
Admittedly, not all the photos in this post are great as I lactose skills necessary to get a good picture!
On my arrival at Mirasaka station (a pretty interesting building in itself) I knew I only had half an hour to locate the building, photograph it and then get back for the 8:30 train back to Miyoshi for my next adventure of the day. Please note that trains can be very rare in this part of Japan and there are no services between 9am and 4pm!
- Osaka Gyunyuten is located at 673-3 Mirasakacho, Miyoshi, Hiroshima-ken.
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