Miraculous Five Mikata Lakes Guided Tour: Learn About Their 70,000 Years of History
Duration: 2 Hour(s) (approx.)
Location:Mikatakaminaka District, Fukui
What makes Lake Suigetsu, one of Mikatagoko (the five lakes of Mikata), a miraculous lake with 70,000 years of history?
In this tour, experience wonder and fascination while riding an electric scooter around the shores of Mikatagoko (the five lakes of Mikata).
- Visit the special topographical environment of Mikatagoko (the five lakes of Mikata) on-site and understand what a miraculous lake Suigetsu is.
- Our guided tour at the Varve Museum and a visit to the shores of Lake Mikata Goko will teach you of the 70,000 years of history that the varves reveal.
- Enjoy a refreshing ride along the lakeside on an electric kickboard, one of the latest in EV (electronic vehicle) mobility.
- Catch a glimpse of the authentic Japanese villages around Mikatagoko (the five lakes of Mikata) including plum farms and the sight of fishermen on the lake. Along the way, enjoy the local hospitality at the farms and the open gardens.
Choose from two start times, 10:00 or 14:00.
[10:00 / 14:00] The tour starts at Cafe Shima. First, guests will watch a brief explanation of varves in the theater of the Varve Museum before heading out to practice riding the electric scooter.
[10:15 / 14:15] Ride safely through the plum fields! You might have the chance to see some traditional fishing on Lake Mikata.
[10:35 / 14:35] After passing through the moat, ride along the shores of Lake Suga, a quiet lake with no artificial structures. Also observe migratory birds.
[11:05 / 15:05] At the turnaround point, the old ryokan (Japanese inn) stand along the lakeside, creating a picturesque atmosphere.
[11:40 / 15:40] Some stops may include the fishery cooperative office and the Torohama Sake Brewery.
[12:00 / 16:00] Return to Cafe Shima where the tour ends.
Guests that want more information on varves, can visit the Varve Museum after the tour!
There is always a universal standard - a ruler, a scale, a time when measuring something such as the metric system, the Greenwich Observatory, etc. Similarly, in the world of archaeology, where there is no written record, there was a need for a standard for accurate dating. This is the varves.
There are only a few places in the world where varves can be excavated, and Lake Suigetsu is one of them. The world's longest varves of about 70,000 years have been excavated in a uniquely clean condition from the lake. Since then, the varves of Lake Suigetsu have become the world's recognized "measure of age" after several international debates.
How could it be possible to excavate 70,000 years of varves in such a beautiful shape? This miracle is thanks to the unique topography of Mikatagoko (the five lakes of Mikata).
On this program, explore around Lake Mikata, Lake Suga, and Lake Suigetsu on an electric kickboard to experience the story of the land that produced the varves of Lake Suigetsu! You can also enjoy the authentic Japanese villages along the shores of the Mikata Five Lakes, which you can imagine the ancient time of the country from the sight of plum fields and the fishing boats fishing on the lakes. Along the way, you will experience the local hospitality and have a chance to interact with locals.
We recommend three courses for the electric kickboard tour of Mikatagoko. On the guided tour you can choose either the "Relaxing Nature Course" or the "Plum Road Course”, which is subject to the weather and road conditions. The guide may choose the course as a result.
We also offer a rental service without a guide. Please enjoy your trip along the shores of Mikatagoko with our original self-guided map in hand.
【THINGS TO NOTE】
- Time：2 hours
- Meeting point：Cafe Shima [MAP]
Fukui Prefectural Varve Museum, 122-12-1, Torihama, Wakasa, Mikatakaminaka District, Fukui 919-1331
5 min by taxi or 10 min by rental bicycle ride from JR Mikata Station.
35 min drive by rental car from JR Tsuruga Station.
5 min from the Mikatagoko Smart IC on the Maizuru-Wakasa Expressway.
Free parking for 70 vehicles (including 4 large buses)
- Language support：Japanese
- Included：Varve Museum entrance fee, electric scooter rental, guide fee, helmet, map fee
- Excluded：In October and November, depending on the temperature, you may need warm clothes to protect yourself from the wind.
- Items to bring：Automobile driver's license (does not include small special vehicle license)
- Free WI-FI：No
- Toilet：Yes (Western-style)
- Other things to note：
・As electric scooters fall under the category of motorized bicycles, a driver's license (not including small special vehicle license) is required.
・The route may be changed due to weather conditions or the driving skills of the participants.
We will contact you by e-mail the day before the tour.
【HEALTH AND SAFETY MEASURES】
・Face masks required for travelers in public areas
・Face masks required for guides in public areas
・Hand sanitizer available to travelers and staff
・Social distancing enforced throughout the experience
・Regularly sanitized high-traffic areas
・Gear/equipment sanitized between uses
・Guides required to regularly wash hands
・Regular temperature checks for staff
・Temperature checks for travelers upon arrival
7 to 4 days before the tour date: 40% of the tour price
3 to 2 days before the tour date: 60% of the tour price
The day before the tour date, on the day of the tour: 100% of the tour price
※Right after the online settlement is made, a cancellation fee of 10% will be incurred in case of cancellation.
※The cancellation fee includes handling charges.