About ISHINOMAKI

The city of Ishinomaki covers a very wide area, and is divided into a variety of different areas, each with their own unique feel and special products.
To get the best out of the city, visitors are advised to check out what there is and how to get there in advance, one of the services we aim to provide here!

石巻市イラストマップ

Central Ishinomaki

中心市街地

Central Ishinomaki, of course, is where Ishinomaki Station and the City Hall can be found.
Major sightseeing points are Hiyoriyama (Mt. Hiyori) with excellent views of the city from the park at the summit, and Ishinomaki Mangattan Museum, devoted to the life and works of the famed manga artist Shotaro Ishinomori.
Many old buildings and shops still remain standing despite the 2011 tsunami, giving a nostalgic retro feel to the area.
After the 2011 disaster, a number of NPOs and other organizations started up offices here to provide aid and inject new vitality into the area.

check!

It’s easy to get around the central area on foot or using rented bicycles. However, visitors should be aware that Tuesday is the day when relatively large numbers of shops are closed.

Kahoku Region

(approx. 30 mins by car from Ishinomaki Station, nearest Sanriku Expwy exit is Kahoku)

河北エリア

Kahoku is home to “Jōbon no Sato,” a roadside service area with not only restroom facilities, but a convenience store, restaurant and food stalls and an area selling a wide variety of local produce, food and other gifts.
The facility also has a spa hot bath, and a foot bath that can be used for free. Kahoku is also known for the swans that migrate to the area in the winter months, which are a popular attraction.

 

Ogatsu Region

(approx. 50 mins by car from Ishinomaki Station)

雄勝エリア

This area suffered particularly badly from the 2011 tsunami.
Fishing is a major industry here, and visitors are recommended to visit the Tanakoyagai, a prefab row of shops built as a stopgap while more permanent places are rebuilt after the disaster.
The facility houses Dempachi Sushi, famed for its delicious seafood. Another popular site is Hayama Shrine.
Ogatsu is also known throughout Japan for its production of suzuri, the inkstones used in Japanese calligraphy.

 

Oshika Region

(approx. 1 hour by car from Ishinomaki Station)

牡鹿エリア

Famed for its natural beauty, Oshika boasts a wonderful coastline, with every individual bay and cove offering a unique scenic pleasure.
Many areas have stunning views, but Gobansho Park at the tip of the peninsula is particularly well-known.
The region is also known for the number of wild deer that can be found here.

Kanan Region

(approx. 30 mins by car from Ishinomaki Station)

河南エリア

Famed for its natural beauty, Oshika boasts a wonderful coastline, with every individual bay and cove offering a unique scenic pleasure.
Many areas have stunning views, but Gobansho Park at the tip of the peninsula is particularly well-known.
The region is also known for the number of wild deer that can be found here.

Monou Region

(approx. 30 mins by car from Ishinomaki Station)

桃生エリア

Monou’s sightseeing attractions include Uetateyama Park and Hidakami Shrine.
The name Monou is derived from the Ainu word “momunupuka,” which means a hill where the river runs.
The area has historical significance as the former site of a castle. It also known for Monou tea, which is famous for being the green tea variety cultivated the furthest north of any green tea.

Kitakami Region

(approx. 40 mins by car from Ishinomaki Station)

北上エリア

A hidden treasure of the area is the hot spring of Oiwake, tucked away in the mountains.
Kitakami is also home to Tsuri-ishi Shrine, famous for a large boulder that looks as if it should tumble off a cliff face, but never does, making it a popular venue for students to visit to pray that they do not “tumble off” and fail their exams.

The part of the Kitakami River that flows through here is famous for its reed beds, which look particularly beautiful in the evening when they glow golden in the setting sun.
Another popular place is Jūsan-hama, known for its production of high quality wakame seaweed.

Islands

(Kinkasan, Tashiro, Ajishima)

離島

Ishinomaki has several popular islands to visit, all of which are serviced by boat routes.

kinkasan

kinkasan island

Kinkasan Island off the Oshika Peninsula is home to a shrine and many wild deer, and is known as a power spot.
It is said that making a pilgrimage to the shrine 3 years in succession will mean that you will have no money problems for the rest of your life.

Ajishima is famous for its natural beauty, and last but not least is Tashiro Island, or Cat Island as it is known by many people.

This island is famous for the large number of stray cats wandering around the island, and it was said that the behavior of the cats was a way to tell how well the day’s fishing would go.
Some people credit the cats for lessening damage caused to the island in the 2011 tsunami, and it has become popular venue for cat lovers.

Tashiro also features a “cat shrine” and some rentable cottages designed by manga artists to resemble cats.

Ferries run between central Ishinomaki and Tashiro 3 times a day (taking from 40 – 60 mins, so are not frequent. Visitors are advised to plan carefully, so you are not forced to spend the night on the island.

Amenities are also scarce with only one shop on the island.