When it comes to summer food in Kagoshima, Somen noodles will spring up in minds of local people in Kagoshima. Tosenkyo is filled with many people every summer. There are three restaurants in Tosenkyo. I had somen noodle at Chojuan this time.
- 1 Tosenkyo
- 2 Tosenkyo Entrance
- 3 Kawakami Shrine
- 4 Shiei Restaurant
- 5 Chojuan
- 6 Travel Information of Tosenkyo
In the past, the area was used to be sea.
Chinese ships came here from the Tang dynasty.
“To” means Tang, “Sen” means “ship” and “Kyo” means “valley”.
Tosenkyo is the first place in Japan which introduced the water circling table in 1967.
The mayor of Kaimon invented this special table before it spread to all parts of Japan.
The machine makes use of natulal cold water (about 13 degrees) which comes from underground.
We avoided busy lunch time and visited Tosenkyo at around 17:00.
There are three restaurants in Tosenkyo, Shiei, Chojuan and Masunoya.
Those three restaurants use different noodle soups.
Following photo shows the entrance to Shiei.
But you can go to other two restaurants from the entrance, too.
The steep steps lead from the entrance to restaurants.
Elderly and disabled people can take the elevator down to Tosenkyo.
Following picture is the entrance to the elevator.
We took the elevator to Tosenkyo since we were with a baby.
When we reached the 1st floor, we found a big portrait of Princess Atsu.
The portrait consists of large number of tooth picks of different colors.
I took the following video to show you the way from the entrance to the Shiei restaurant.
Once we got off elevator, we found a small shrine on a lake.
Kawakami Shrine is built on the water origin of Tosenkyo.
The shrine is the branch of Hirakiki Shrine, which is famous as the 1st shrine of Satsuma Domain.
The shrine worships Mizuhameno or the water’s God.
The water origin has irrigated the agricultural firelds of surrounding area of Tosenkyo for centuries.
Local people have respected the shrine as the center of the lives of people.
The shrine looks as if it is floating on lake.
The water is one of the 100 famous waters of Heisei era as curved the stone of the following picture.
10 tons of water come from undergrounds every day.
You can get a taste of the water here for free.
Some farmers make use of the clean water to cultivate wasabi.
The temperature of the water is 13 degrees. Very low!
I heard from local people that many children enjoyed swimming in the lake in the past.
I saw many carps and some sturgeons swimming slowly in the lake.
The Shiei restaurant is located next to Kawakami Shrine and run by Ibusuki City.
You can enjoy having Somen noodles in large and open space.
There are many unique tables of Somen noodles.
The restaurant is full of people in summer.
Please buy tickets at this place.
It is pleasant to have lunch at this spacious place.
Many people enjoy lunch during summer.
|Somen noodle, Rice ball, Grilled trout, Carp miso soup, Carp sashimi
|Somen noodle, Rice ball, Grilled trout
|Somen noodle, Inari sushi, Grilled trout, Carp miso soup
|Herb flavored grilled Set
|Somen noodle, Rice ball, Herb-flavored grilled trout, Carp miso soup
The open hour varies according to each season.
- Summer （July – September : 10:00-19:00 (August : until 20:00）
- Spring & Fall（March – June, October）: 10:00-17:00（Golden Week : until 19:00）
- Winter (November – February）: 10:00-15:00（17:00 during new year and year end holidays)
If you have lunch, I recommend you Shiei somen noodle restaurant because it is jolly and spacious.
But if you take a baby there, there is no place where the baby sleep.
The restaurant is very crowded in summer.
Chojuan is next to Shiei restaurant. You can also walk directly from the parking lot to Chojuan.
The atmosphere of Chojuan puts emphasis on traditional Japanese style.
The price is a bit more expensive than Shiei.
|Somen noodle, Grilled trout, Rice ball, Carp miso soup
|Somen noodle, Grilled trout, Rice ball, Carp miso soup, Carp sashimi
|Somen noodle, Grilled trout, Select rice (Trout sushi, Steamed rice or Inari), Carp miso soup. Carp sashimi
|Ikizukuri (Take Set)
|Slices of living carps, Somen noodle, Grilled trout, Rice ball
|Ikizukuri (Matsu Set)
|Slices of living carps, Somen noodle, Grilled trout, Select rice (Trout sushi, Steamed rice or Inari)
We ordered “Special Set” and fried sweet potato.
If you order other additional food, please buy food tickets at the following machine.
Dinner at Chojuan
I recommend you to have dinner at tables outside, but we had dinner inside for our baby.
Luckily we found that we were the only guests to have dinner at the place at that time.
Let’s put the noodle into the water!
The noodles circle very fast!
Noodle soup is a bit more salty than Shiei’s one.
Cold springing water makes the noodle very delicious.
Carp miso soup has an unique taste.
Grilled trout is delicious especially when you have somen noodles.
Fried Sweet Potato
If you like sweet foods, this is the thing you should try!
The skin of the potato is very crispy. The inside of the potato is very soft.
The white powder on the dish is salt. Salt improves the sweetness of the potato.
Chojuan at night
After having somen noodle, we walked around Tosenkyo.
We found a souvenir shop which sells local foods.
Many families and friends were enjoying dinner.
Ibusuki mango cider (300 yen).
- Spring（May to June）: 10:00-19:00
- Summer (July to August)：10:00-20:00
- Winter（September to April) : 10:00-16:00
Travel Information of Tosenkyo
- Car…From Kagoshima City : Take route 226 and drive southward and turn right at the Iwamoto crossroad and drive 15 minutes (Total time: 1.5 hours)
- Train…15 minutes from JR Kaimon Station (Time Table of JR Kaimon Station）
- Bus…Take Kagoshima Kotsu Bus (for JR Kaimon Station and Higashi-Okawa) at JR Ibusuki Station (Total time 2 hour) *（Bus Time Table）
77 Senta, Kaimon, Ibusuki City