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Release | nobu Kawashima

Spent a night around Cape Soya, the northernmost point of Japan

You can find the monument of the northernmost point of Japan at Cape Soya. This must be a once in a lifetime place to visit for everyone in Japan. 

However, there are more in the area than taking a memorial picture!
I stayed a night around Cape Soya and took a walk around the area.
The views in the evening and the morning was especially fantastic.


Table of Contents

- The standard spots in Cape Soya!
- Check-in to Minshuku Soyamisaki, which is only three minutes walk from Cape Soya
- Found a hidden place to watch the sunset! 
- Enjoyed local seafood in the room
- A morning walk around Cape Soya was amazing! 

▲宗谷岬にある日本最北端の地の碑付近に沈む夕陽▲Sunset near the monument of the northernmost point of Japan at Cape Soya. 


The standard spots in Cape Soya!

Cape Soya is the northernmost point of Hokkaido.
Which means, it is also the northernmost point of Japan.

* In this article, we refer to “the northernmost point” excluding Northern Territories which usual Japanese people can’t visit as of 2018. 

You can reach to Cape Soya in approximately 30 mins drive from Wakkanai Airport and approximately 45 mins from JR Wakkanai Station. 

When you keep driving towards the north by the coastline and see the cape, you will surely feel that you finally reached the final destination. 

多くの人たちが記念撮影をしたり海の向こうを眺めたり、思い思いに過ごしていました▲Many people were at the cape to take pictures and watch the horizon. 

The standard things to see here is the monument of the northernmost point of Japan. I guess most people take at least a picture here. 

Most of groups and singles ask someone to take pictures of themselves and the monument. 

訪れた日の宗谷岬は風が強く髪の毛が爆発。まぁ、それもよき想い出…▲The day I visited Cape Soya was very windy, and my hair turned out a mess in the picture. Well… it’s part of my memory of the visit. 

The ocean surrounds the cape, and you can see the island of Sakhalin if the weather is nice. 

You can purchase “the certificate of reaching the northernmost point of Japan” issued by Wakkanai Sightseeing Association at souvenir shops around the cape. (100 yen per piece)

旅の想い出に、最北端を制した記念に1枚いかが?日時の刻印も入りますよ▲How about getting one as a memorial of your journey and reaching the northernmost point of Japan? They will print the date, too. 

There are “Statue of Mamiya Rinzo” and “Cape Soya music monument” near the monument of the northernmost point of Japan. 

Furthermore, there are Cape Soya lighthouse, etc., and you can look down Cape Soya and Soya Strait if you walk up the hill across the street from the monument of the northernmost point of Japan. 

右下に日本最北端の地の碑が見えます▲You can see the monument of the northernmost point of Japan on the bottom-right in this picture. 

The hill is pretty spacious. 
Other than Cape Soya lighthouse, there are many historical sites and monuments such as the Old Navy Watch Tower and Tower of Prayer. 

1902(明治35)年に国境防備のために作られた要塞。途中まで登ることができ、宗谷海峡を見渡すことができます▲The fort created for border defense in 1902. You can climb up to the middle and get the view of Soya Strait. 

広々とした丘の上。宗谷海峡の向こうにはサハリンの島影が見えます▲Top of the hill was spacious. I could see the shadow of Sakhalin beyond Soya Strait. 

The area is called Cape Soya Park. 
You should check out the whole park rather than just taking pictures at the monument of the northernmost point of Japan! 


Check-in to Minshuku Soyamisaki, which is only three minutes walk from Cape Soya

I checked in to tonight’s accommodation after I looked around Cape Soya Park. 
There are few B&Bs around Cape Soya.
Among them, I stayed at “Minshuku Soyamisaki” this time. 

宗谷岬から歩いて約3分、国道沿いにあります▲The inn is located approximately three mins walk from Cape Soya, by the National Route. 

Minshuku Soyamisaki has continued for over a half-century at Cape Soya. 

They open only for staying from July to September which is the busy season. They also offer lunch at a diner from around October to June. 

宿の名がズバリ宗谷岬なので、宿名が書かれたものはどれもメモリアルなものに見えてしまいます▲The name of the accommodation is Cape Soya so everything with the inn’s name on seems like a souvenir! 

Let’s take a walk around Cape Soya in the evening after resting a while in the room. 


Found a hidden place to watch the sunset! 

It’s about three mins to Cape Soya from the inn. 
It feels kind of strange to be in a place where I can visit the northernmost point of Japan anytime because I took so long to reach here. 

Let’s make this opportunity meaningful. I went to a different place to watch Cape Soya and the sunset. 

I went to “Teppen Dome” (The Breakwater Dome) which is about 3-4 mins walk from Minshuku Soya Misaki. It’s about 7-8 mins walk from Cape Soya.

てっぺんドームは宗谷岬近くにある2階建ての港湾施設▲Teppen Dome is a two stories port facility near Cape Soya. 

The first floor is a place for fishing activities where fishers can avoid wind, rain, and high waves. The second floor is an observation deck where you can get the view of Cape Soya and Soya Strait. 

The views from the second floor of Teppen Dome and the seasides around here are pretty nice! 

宗谷岬に夕陽がちゃぽん♪▲The sun sinking down to Cape Soya. 

You can see the monument of the northernmost point of Japan from the side.
It looks like this when I zoom in.

日本最北端の地の碑の前とはえ、さすがにこの時はみなさん記念撮影ではなく夕陽を撮っていたようです▲Although it was in front of the northernmost point of Japan, everyone was taking pictures of the sunset, not the monument. 

I experienced the sunset at the northernmost point of Japan. This is something rare, isn’t it? 


Enjoyed local seafood in the room

I had dinner at the inn after I enjoyed the walk in the evening. Staying at the inn near the cape was nice. It’s a privilege for people who stay in this area. 


You can enjoy the dinner using local seafood mainly for dinner. And you can have it in your room! 

部屋食なので、まわりの目を気にせず食事を楽しめます!(^^)!▲I could enjoy the dinner without paying attention to people around because it was served in my room. (^^)!

Those who don’t want people to think you are a big eater, moms, and dads who can’t enjoy the meal with children when people are around! You can enjoy the meal at your own pace. 

この日の夕食は、ニシンの焼物やホタテ稚貝の酒蒸し、ホタテやツブ、赤エビやブリの刺身、牛肉のタタキなど。写真内容のほか、もちろんごはんもあります▲Dinner of the day had grilled herrings, baby scallops steamed with sake, red rice prawn and yellowtail sashimi, and seared beef. Of course, they are served with rice. 

The main dish turns into Soya region’s local specialty octopus shabu-shabu when they had a fish catch. The content depends on what they stock up. 

模様が入ったワサビの下は、北海道の形をした昆布が敷いてありました▲There was a Hokkaido-shaped piece of kelp under the wasabi in a leaf shape. 

The dish seemed that it took a lot of work to prepare. 
I enjoyed everything! 

楊枝立てはホタテ貝をモチーフにしたもの。ホタテの産地ならでは▲The toothpick stand was a scallop! Soya region is famous for scallops. 

I went into bed after I finished the meal and took a bath. 


A morning walk around Cape Soya was amazing!

The sunrise of Cape Soya on the day I visited was 4:25 AM. 

I was planning to wake up early and see the sunrise, but I overslept…

It was not exactly my plan, but I woke up at 6:00 AM. 
Outside was completely bright already…

日の出は逃したものの、爽やかな朝の空気を吸いに外へ出ました▲I could not see the sunrise, but I went out to get the fresh air in the morning. 

Although it was mid-summer, the temperature of the northernmost point in the morning was below 20 degrees.
I wore my jacket and walked towards Cape Soya. 

日本最北端のガソリンスタンドの前を通り過ぎると、宗谷岬が見えてきました▲I could see Cape Soya after I pass the northernmost gas station. 

宗谷岬へ到着。既に車が数台停まっていました。みなさん早起きですね…!▲I arrived at Cape Soya. Few cars were already parked in the parking. There were apparently many early birds! 

There was a little haze in the ocean, but the sky was so blue! 

水平線が霞んでいたものの、サハリンの島影がうっすらと見えました▲The horizon was a little hazy, and I could barely see the shadow of Sakhalin. 

Cape Soya before 7:00 in the morning was less crowded than yesterday. 
I did not have to wait at the memorial photo spot, too. 

東向きに立つ間宮林蔵の立像も朝なら逆光にならず綺麗に撮れます▲The statue of Mamiya Rinzo faces the east so you can take the beautiful picture in the morning. 

I went up on the hill as I felt some nice breeze which made me forgot it was mid-summer. 

眺め爽快!車やバス、人も少なくスッキリとした印象です▲The view was amazing! There were fewer cars, buses, and people so feels much nicer. 

After I took a walk around Cape Soya Park for about 30 mins, I went back to the inn to have breakfast. 

この日の朝食。手作り感があって嬉しい♪▲The breakfast of the day. It looks like a homemade dish which felt really nice. 

味噌汁にはホタテの稚貝が。いいダシが出ていました▲I found baby scallops in the miso soup. The soup had a nice flavor of scallops. 

The manager wakes up 3:00 AM every day to prepare this breakfast. I thanked the manager and enjoyed the dishes thoroughly! 

A night at the northernmost point of Japan felt special. 

After check-out, you can visit Soya Kyuryo or White Road. Or go back to Wakkanai City or go down south along the Sea of Okhotsk. 

Start your journey towards south from Cape Soya. 
  • Spent a night around Cape Soya, the northernmost point of Japan