A 50-minute one-way sightseeing course by boat from Shiogama to Matsushima. A famous Japanese haiku poet Matsuo Basho (1644 - 1694）left Shiogama for Matsushima by boat during his travel throughout Tohoku as written in his travelogue "Oku no Hosomichi". The Matsuhima Bay Cruise - Island Hopping Basho Course, closely traces the route that Basho traveled by boat.
Approximately 260 islands are floating along Matsushima Bay and each of them offers a unique view such as Nio-jima island, which has been eroded by wind and waves into the shape of a guardian of the temple, or Kane-jima island, which has cave-like tunnels. Shiogama Port is full of vibrant atmosphere with fishing boats and patrol vessels of the Japan Coast Guard coming and going.
The sightseeing boat even goes through shallow water at a depth of 2 meters so that passengers can take a close look at beautiful islands. Passengers should fully enjoy the dynamic scenery, one of the main features offered by the Basho course.
At Shiogama, please pick up the ticket at the ticket counter of Marubun Matsushima Kisen in the Marine Gate Shiogama at the Shiogama Port passenter terminal. The jetty for sightseeing boats is located outside of the building. Present your ticket to the staff (keep the stub during the cruise), and then get on board.
At Matsushima, purchase your ticket at the ticket counter of Marubun Matsushima Kisen in the Matsushima Rest House. Please make sure that the ticket is for "Shiogama" as the next counter sells tickets for another destination (Matsushima round tour.)
English maps are availale at both ticket counters at Matsushima and Shiogama.
On the ship, passengers enjoy their time having a view of the port or taking pictures of Matsushima’s islands. To access to upstairs seats, an additional fare of 600 yen per adult is charged. Those who wish to upgrade to a seat to upstairs, additional fare can be paid on board. There are indoor spaces on the first and second floors so that passengers stay comfortable even in winter.
Announcements on board are also made in Korean, Mandarin and Cantonese.
One-way trip lasts approximately 50 minutes. When the boat arrives at the jetty, get off the boat following the instructions given by the staff.
|Applicable period||All the year round.|
|Time required||From Shiogama to Matsuhima: 50 minutes|
Departure from Shiogama; from December to March: 9:00, 10:00, 11:00, 12:00, 13:00, and 14:00. *From April to November, departure time of the last boat is 15:00.Departure from Matsushima; all year 10:00, 11:00, 12:00, 13:00, 14:00, and 15:00
|Fees include:||Boat fare.||Fees exclude:||Additional fare for upstairs seat (600 yen per adult, 300 yen per child). *Payment can be made on board.|
|Preparation in advance:||Nothing in particular.||Meeting time & place||Shiogama jetty: Marine Gate Shiogama, Matsushima jetty: Matsushima Rest House.|
|Minimum participants count||One person.||Booking starting time & deadline||Booking acceptable|
|Age limit||No.||Cancellation fees||No.|
|Fees||1,400 yen per adult. *1,500 yen after April 2014.|
|Notes||There are two routes; from Shiogama to Matsushima and from Matsushima to Shiogama. Please note departure and arrival times are different depending on the route.|
|Languages available for service||
1. Website in English is available