Kiritappu (official town name is Hamanaka) is a foggy town and spreads out the vague wetlands at the eastern end of Kushiro Region, but the poetic natural landscape and fishing villages fascinate travelers. The coastal wetland of Kiritappu Shitsugen, at 3168-hectare, is full of colorful wildflowers from June to July.
Highlights Kiritappu Shitsugen, Biwase Viewpoint, Azechi-no-misaki, Kiritappu-misaki
Tourist Information Hamanaka Tourist Association (浜中町観光協会): www.kiritappu.jp
Kiritappu Wetland Center
20 Yonbanzawa / 9am-5pm / Closed Tue Oct-Apr & 2-31 Jan / FREE / www.kiritappu.or.jp/center
At the western side of Kiritappu Shitsugen is this center on a hill, where you can learn about and see the wetland. There is a scenic cafe (9.30am-3.30pm) and a shop. Outdoor gear, such as MTB (¥1000) and snowshoes (¥300), are available to rent. English-speak staff can arrange private eco tours (¥3500), you need to make reservation by three days before. This center is on the bus route between Chanai Station and Kiritappu Onsen Yuyu.
Biwase Wooden Walkway
琵琶瀬木道 / 122 Nakanohama / 24hrs / www.kiritappu.or.jp
From the Kiritappu Wetland National Trust you can see colorful wildflowers from a 1km-long return wooden walkway. It is a 5-minute walk from the Biwase Gakko-mae (びわせ学校前) stop on the bus route from Kiritappu Onsen Yuyu.
03 SCENIC VIEWPOINT
琵琶瀬展望台 / Biwase / 24hrs / FREE
Biwase’s hilltop viewpoint offers photogenic views of both Kiritappu Shitsugen and the Pacific Ocean. Buses from Kiritappu Onsen Yuyu stop here.
Kiritappu Onsen Yuyu
霧多布温泉ゆうゆ / 432 Tofutsu / 9am-5pm / Closed 1st Mon of month / ¥500 / kiritappu-yuyu.com
The terminus of the municipal bus from JR Chanai Station, this hillside onsen has relaxing views of town and wetland from indoor and open-air baths. There is also a manga collection of Lupin the Third (ルパン三世) written by local-born famous comics artist Monkey Punch (モンキーパンチ: 1937-2019).
05 SCENIC CAPE
アゼチの岬 / 481 Tofutsu / 24hrs
From this cape, about 1km west of Kiritappu Onsen, there is a picturesque view over the Biwase Bay with three islands.
06 SCENIC CAPE
霧多布岬 / 33 Tofutsu / 24hrs
At the eastern end of Kiritappu’s tied island, where the road runs out, is the magnificent Kiritappu-misaki (official name is Tofutsu-misaki).
KIRITAPPU (HAMANAKA) MAP
All trains from Kushiro on the JR Nemuro Line (also called the JR Hanasaki Line) stop at Chanai (茶内: 6 daily / 1hr 10min). On weekdays, there are six municipal buses, timed to meet all trains, between JR Chanai Station and Kiritappu Onsen Yuyu (霧多布温泉ゆうゆ: 30min / ¥200) via Kiritappu Shitsugen Center and Central Kiritappu.
From Kiritappu Onsen Yuyu, the municipal bus (runs only weekdays) operates Kiritappu–Chirippu Line (霧多布散布線) to Mochirippu (藻散布) and Kiritappu–Akkeshi Line (霧多布厚岸線) to Nenohi Koen (子野日公園). These buses stop at Biwase Viewpoint (びわせ展望台) and Central Kiritappu.