Ranked no. 11 for scenic beauty globally, lose yourself in the blue of Nemophila Hill in Ibaraki!
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Miharashi no Oka, commonly known as Nemophila Hill, in Hitachi Kaihin Koen (Hitachi Seaside Park) is ranked 11th in the book “The World’s Best Scenic Views” published in the summer of 2013. The ground covered with a blue blanket of flowers blends with the sky and you are surrounded by an endless world of blue.
Over a short two-week period, the number of visitors exceeds 1.77 million.
A single flower of Nemophila has round petals and looks extremely dainty. The thought that such a stunning artistic view is created by these dainty, rather plain-looking flowers en masse will definitely touch an emotional chord or two.
Nemophila’s blooming season is from the end of April to mid-May. The hill gets extremely crowded during this period, so it is best to visit early on weekdays early in the morning. You may want to take special care to avoid visiting during Golden Week, a period containing multiple national holidays in Japan, as it falls right during the blooming season.
1. Look up from the foot of the hill
The best view is when you look up from the foot of the hill. The view, which gives the impression that the Nemophila-covered hill extends and merges with the sky, has marveled visitors from all over the world.
The hill is predominantly covered with blue flowers interspersed with white ones. Areas dense with white flowers have more of a pale-blueish look, while areas with blue flowers exhibit a purple-tinted blue. The hill offers a different appearance depending on both the direction your camera is facing and light exposure. Have fun taking as many photos as you wish from different angles.
2. Follow the path leading to the top of the hill
As you proceed on the path laid out on the carpet of Nemophila, you will feel like you are walking in the sky.
3. Garden art made by two types of Nemophila
There is also an area in the park where white flowers are intentionally planted densely around blue ones creating a certain decorative pattern that looks like garden art. The design changes each year but below is an image of a white dove flying into the vast blue sky.
4. View from the top of the hill
Now it’s time to look down the hill from the top. You can look over the gently-sloped hill covered with blue flowers as well as other areas of the park. The park has an amusement area with rides, so after enjoying the flowers in close proximity, viewing them from afar on the Ferris wheel may also be a good idea.
5. Nemophila with an ocean view
From the top of the hill, you can also see the Pacific Ocean. Enjoy the subtle but lovely contrast created by three kinds of blue that of the Nemophila, the ocean, and the sky.
6. Brilliant collaboration with rapeseed flowers!
The contrast of blue and yellow is just stunning!
The food stands offer a menu featuring exceptional color/bulking agent/preservative-free ham and sausages, that are made from Okukuji game fowl poultry, Hitachi beef, and pork; all locally grown in Ibaraki. When you feel hungry after walking and soaking in the beauty of Nemophila, come here and fill your bellies with some delicious treats!
A hot dog with a big pork sausage costs 400 yen.
Hams on a skewer, very filling, 500 yen each!
This hotel is many tourists’ favorite for its location on the beach and easy access to the aquarium Aquaworld Oarai and the Resort Outlets Oarai, in addition to Hitachi Seaside Park. Its “half buffet” dinner system, a fusion of banquet and buffet style, is another popular feature.
Oarai Seaside Hotel
This hotel boasts of a large open-air bath supplied with spring water from Oarai Isozaki Jinja (shrine) as well as guest rooms, both of which look out to the Pacific Ocean. Both dinner and breakfast are served in your room.
Oarai Seaside Hotel (大洗シーサイドホテル)
Address：6880-9 Isohamacho, Oarai-machi, Higashiibaraki-gun, Ibaraki (茨城県東茨城郡大洗町磯浜町6880-9)
Seasonal limited-edition sweets reflecting the image of Nemophila are worth checking out. Enjoy “Nemophila Soft Served Ice Cream” with a refreshing color combination, and for a souvenir, we recommend “Nemophila-no-kaze” (literally translating to Nemophila Winds), a light-textured dumpling-like pastry with white bean paste and blue berry jam inside.
We also found something humorous that may make you laugh. It’s curry!
Japanese curries are usually brown but this one comes in an eye-flickering blue! Generally, blue is known to be a color that diminishes one’s appetite; what’s your opinion? No need to worry, however, as it certainly tastes like regular curry. It is also sold in a retort pouch. Surprise your friends with this souvenir!
Take Ibaraki Kotsu Bus from the East exit of JR Katsuta Station and get off at the West Exit or South Exit of Kaihin Koen bus stop.
Schedule of events changes each year. Be sure to check the websites before your trip.
Address：605-4 Onuma-aza, Mawatari, Hitachinaka-shi, Ibaraki (茨城県ひたちなか市大字馬渡大沼605−4)
Required time: Half day
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