Release | nobu Kawashima
Going around Hokkaido (16) Todowara to Former Okuyukiusu Station: Enjoyed Odaitou cruise and Betsukai Jumbo Scallop Burger
This is the 16th article of the series to travel around the coastline of Hokkaido. In this article, I will enjoy driving in Betsukai-Cho.
I will drive from Todowara in Notsuke Peninsula, a long and Bay land sticking out to the sea, to a historic site “Former Okuyukiusu Station.” I will stop by Hashirikotan, the sandbank between the ocean and Lake Furen.
I crossed Notsuke Sea and landed to Todowara again during the cruising tour at Odaitou. I had the famous local specialty “Betsukai Jumbo Scallop Burger” at Michi No Eki.
▲I enjoyed “Betsukai Jumbo Scallop Burger” at Michi No Eki. I also had jumbo size milk in a huge mug!
Table of Contents- About the series: Going around Hokkaido
- About the route: From Todowara in Betsukai-Cho to Former Okuyukiusu Station in Betsukai-Cho
- Todowara to Odaitou: I went around Nokke Bay with a car and a boat
- Odaitou to Michi No Eki Odaitou: Scallop and milk are both in jumbo size!
- Michi No Eki Odaitou to Hashirikotan: What happened when I continued driving the sandbank in Lake Furen?
- Hashirikotan to Former Okuyukiusu Station: I took time to explore the site to learn the history of Hokkaido’s development
About the series: Going around HokkaidoThis is a part of the series of articles to introduce my journey to go around Hokkaido. I will introduce my relaxing trip about visiting cities and towns, enjoying beautiful views, having delicious foods, and encountering to fascinating people.
Below are the basic rules about the project:
- Basically, drive only National Routes or Hokkaido Roads along coastlines.
- I can use municipal roads near central towns, promontories, etc. However, I try not to use community roads and private roads.
- I only drive the mainland of Hokkaido. (I’m sorry to those live in islands!)
- I drive from the sunrise to the sunset to enjoy the views.
- I divide my journey into a few times according to the coverage schedule.
About the route: From Todowara in Betsukai-Cho to Former Okuyukiusu Station in Betsukai-Cho▲The route of this article (Google My Maps)
About the route: From Todowara in Betsukai-Cho to Former Okuyukiusu Station in Betsukai-Cho
Mileage: Approx. 76 kilometers
The time required: Approx. 1 hour 30 mins (except breaks, time to stop at sightseeing spots, and the detour)
Check the detailed map from the link below!
Going around Hokkaido (11) -
Going around Hokkaido (1) - (10)
You can find the previous article of the series here:
Going around Hokkaido (15) Aidomari Bridge in Shiretoko Rausu to Todowara in Nokke Peninsula: Drive along the coastline with the view of Kunashir Island
▲Going around Hokkaido has come this much! (Google My Maps)
Todowara to Odaitou: I went around Nokke Bay with a car and a boatTodowara to Odaitou
Mileage: Approx. 25 kilometers
The time required: Approx. 30 mins
▲I will start from the nearest parking from Todowara.
Todowara is a dead Todomatsu (pine) forest. It was eroded by seawater, and the landscape looks as if it is the end of the world.
▲You can get to Todowara in 30 minutes one way with a wooden path from the parking.
I visited Todowara in late October 2018. The day is short in autumn to winter. I took time to walk around Todowara, and before I notice, it was already evening, and it looked like this before 3:00 PM.
▲Notsuke Bay, seen from the point near parking. Because curved Notsuke Peninsula surrounds the bay, there are almost no waves. The water looked like a mirror.
▲I drove back the road, which is in the middle of the long and narrow Notsuke Peninsula for a while after leaving the parking.
I turned left at the National Route no. 244 and arrived at Odaitou District in a few minutes. I stayed a night in Odaitou District.
And on the next day, I did not get on a car. Instead, I got on a boat!
▲The captain Takagi (on the right) and the guide Kawaguchi (on the left) took me.
I went around Notsuke Bay with “Betsukai-Cho Sightseeing Boat,” which travels from Odaitou to Todowara.
Ok, let’s go!
▲Takagi is manipulating the boat. He was kind of cute.
It was about 30 minutes one way from Odaitou to Todowara.
Kawaguchi gives information about Notsuke Peninsula, Todowara, other sightseeing information, and nature in this district on the way. I enjoyed her description while I enjoy the view from the boat.
“Look on your right! There are seals.”
▲I found countless seals sticking their heads out from the ocean!
As I was into finding seals on the right side, he now told they are on the left side. It seems like seals are everywhere around here.
You can watch seals from the boat and also outside at the deck. It was nice to enjoy the wind while watching seals.
▲You can not go out to only the deck but also to the head of boat!
This sightseeing boat has a relaxing mood. I really liked the ships’s mood that I could be myself!
▲I could see Todowara after approximately 20 minutes from the departure.
The boat arrived at the pier near Todowara. He gave me some time to explore Todowara.
▲I took a walk on narrow sand land between the ocean and the ocean.
I felt strange to visit the place I visited on the day before again with a boat.
▲Todowara has many trees that have fallen.
I went back to the boat after exploring Todowara and got back to Odaitou.
Odaitou to Michi No Eki Odaitou: Scallop and milk are both in jumbo size!Odaitou to Michi No Eki Odaitou
Mileage: Approx. 4 kilometers
The time required: Approx. 5 mins
Let’s get back to driving from cruising.
▲I continued driving as I see Notsuke Bay on my left.
It was only five minutes drive, but I decided to take time for sightseeing. It’s time for food this time.
▲I took a break at “Michi No Eki Odaitou.” The exterior of the building was under construction on the day I visited so I borrowed the picture above. (Betsukai-Cho Tourist Association provided the picture)
Betsukai-Cho has many local specialties such as Hokkai shrimp dishes. Among them, I recommend this one for a light meal while driving!
▲Betsukai-Cho’s famous local specialty, “Betsukai Jumbo Scallop Burger.” (Betsukai-Cho Tourist Association provided the picture)
“Betsukai Jumbo Scallop Burger” is a hamburger which puts a spring roll with over 2-L sized huge scallops between square buns made with Hokkaido flour.
It comes with Betsukai Milk in 500-milliliter mug, Hokkaido made french fries, and milk pudding for dessert.
Well, well, well, don’t you think this milk is huge?
▲It’s quite a big meal! Customers make a burger by themselves as if putting different parts together.
1: Put brown miso sauce on the bottom part of the bun and white mayonnaise sauce on the top part of the bun.
2: Put scallop spring roll with a piece of mozzarella cheese on top on the bottom bun. Then put lettuce on it.
3: Put pink aurora sauce on lettuce and marinated vegetables on top.
4: Put the top bun and finish!
▲I am not good with my hands. It was quite hard for me to make a burger.
My burger did not look good, so I am not putting the picture here… Please take a look at the picture I borrowed from Tourist Association.
I failed at making it beautiful, but the flavor was exquisite! The thick scallop was very filling, and different sauce mixed to create a delicate flavor!
This is more than a light meal. This is something you should visit to have; it was a very delicious meal.
I had all the milk and was full. I was delighted!
Michi No Eki Odaitou to Hashirikotan: What happened when I continued driving the sandbank in Lake Furen?Michi No Eki Odaitou to Hashirikotan
Mileage: Approx. 26 kilometers
The time required: Approx. 30 mins
Well, I am finally going to drive.
My next destination is a long and narrow sandbank in between Lake Furen and Nemuro Bay. It’s a narrow land like the Notsuke Peninsula. I am going to Hashirikotan District, which is located in the middle of the sandbank.
▲There were sea and mouth of water on my left. I could see wild birds sometimes. I also could see the shadow of Kunshir Island over the ocean.
▲I went down south along National Route no. 244 and took a left turn at Honbetsukai District.
I did not see the ocean on both sides of the road like the Notsuke Peninsula. However, I still felt that I am driving a flat land because there are no mountains nor a hill.
▲My front was too bright with the sun so I looked back.
I arrived to the port in Hashirikotan District as I kept driving.
▲The end of the road was by the port.
▲There was a sign of Lake Furen on the side of the port.
▲The part which looks like the sea is also a lake. Lake Furen is a vast lake.
There is no tourism facilities or anything. However, I took a while to just rest and watched a magnificent landscape of the lake and wild birds on the lake. It felt nice to be in quietness.
Hashirikotan to Former Okuyukiusu Station: I took time to explore the site to learn the history of Hokkaido’s developmentHashirikotan to Former Okuyukiusu Station
Mileage: Approx. 21 kilometers
The time required: Approx. 25 mins
I left for the next destination after I took a while to enjoy nature. But I had to hit the brakes. Many Ezo deer was crossing the road slowly…
▲I had to park the car and wait for deer to finish crossing. Please cross the road more quickly…
It would be a massive accident if I hit deer. We really need to watch out for deer when we drive in Hokkaido.
After Ezo deer disappeared, I started again slowly. I went back to the National Route 244 and drove towards Nemuro City.
▲I drove in the forest with the last bit of autumn colors.
I will be driving fields and forests, away from the ocean, but the sceneries of rivers on the way were beautiful.
▲I crossed the bridge near the mouth of Yaushubetsu River.
I arrived at Okuyuki District after approximately 15 mins since I merged to the National Route. I kept driving to Former Okuyukiusu Station.
▲National Historic Site “Former Okuyukiusu Station.” Visitors can take a look at inside from spring to autumn.
Stations are facilities built all around Hokkaido from the Meiji Period to early Showa Period. They were facilities for settlers and travelers to have a safe trip and provided accommodation, resting area, and rental men and horses.
Okuyukiusu Station was established in 1910. It became an essential point for transportation and made opportunities to cultivate the area.
You can also find Betsukai-Cho’s Designated Cultural Properties “Former Japan National Rail Shibetsu Line Okuyukiusu Station” and “Former Village Operated Railway Furen Line Okuyukiusu Station” near here. They are about two to three minutes walk from Former Okuyukiusu Station.
▲“Former Japan National Rail Shibetsu Line Okuyukiusu Station” exhibits wooden station building and platform which leaves the atmosphere of early Showa Period.
▲“Former Village Operated Railway Furen Line Okuyukiusu Station” exhibits cars and station facilities of that time.
I learned the history of development as I took a walk around here.
I felt like I am on a field trip.
I enjoyed visiting different tourist destinations while I drive.
This is it for today.
It will be a winter journey from the next article. I will start from the snowy “Former Okuyukiusu Station” and visit the town at the east end of Hokkaido.
I will stop by “Michi No Eki Swan 44 Nemuro” by Lake Furen and “Shunkunitai,” then visit JR Nemuro Station.
Text, photo/Hokkaido Likers photo writer nobu Kawashima
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