Posted by: Darrell | November 2, 2008

Lake Biwa

A view of Lake Biwa from Mt. Hiei

A view of Lake Biwa from Mt. Hiei

X Lake Biwa is the largest lake in Japan and lies north east of KyOto. While only about 1.5 hours away from Hirakata, it is quite a journey into the baCkwards sector of train transport. It is Hard to imagine in a country with the bullet train, but I would liken these backwards trains to a locaL baseball team while the Shinkansen would represent the major leagues and the JR lines, The minor leagues. I often wonder if the all train operators aspire to enter the “major league” and pilot a Shinkansen (although, I have a feeling there isn’t much to piloting a Shinakansen other than pushing a few buttons).

Lake Biwa from Otsu

Lake Biwa from Otsu

Moving on, we took the train to the base of Mount Hiei and through a combination of cable car and climbing, managed to reach the top. At the top there are a series of temples to visit and also great views of Kyoto and the valley, although it is hard to get a good glimpse of Lake Biwa from the mountain.
Descending the mountain, we skipped past Sakamoto, upon advice from a friend, and headed straight to Otsu which has a large park right beside the lake. The park provided great views of the entire lake and was close to a mall which had many restaurants overlooking the lake. During dinner, overlooking the lake, we were surprised (and delighted!) to find that Biwa actually had colourful lit fountains in the middle of the lake. To best enjoy the tranquil night and view the fountains, we snuck out onto a closed pier and just enjoyed the rest of the night~

The colorful lit fountians in Lakw Biwa

The colorful lit fountians in Lake Biwa

I can definitely say that Biwa is one of my favourite moments in Japan and should never be passed up if given the opportunity (to all those future KGU students reading my blog)!

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Responses

  1. mmm I actually would like to ride those little trains; they added something to the “out in the nature” feeling; they were cute 🙂 (but I am one cheesy person too)


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