The majority of Tokyoites usually head on up to Tochigi Prefectures to see the majestic temples of Nikko, the onsen at Kinagawa or to eat gyoza in Utsunomiya. Over the last few years I’ve been off the beaten track a bit more when dipping in and out of the area and this time I explored a few places south-east of Utsunomiya.
The Mōka Railway is a small private rail line (17 stops) connecting Shimodate to Motegi and so back in early March (a few weeks before the State of Emergency began in Japan) I headed up that way to see some places of interest. It was a very early start as I left the Tokyo Fox Global Operations Centre at 6:30 am to cycle to Akabane for the 7:10 train to Shimodate via Oyama. From there it was a local line to Mashiko Station where I handed my ticket to the station attendant as I disembarked at 9:36 from the deserted single-car train.
There was no time to hang about in this pottery town as I needed to return to Continue reading