Matsuyama City: Tram, Botchan train and Mikyan

matsuyama city featured image

[Introduction]

I traveled to Ehime and Kagawa Prefecture for 4 days and 3 nights. In this article, I will write about Tram and Botchan train in Matsuyama City, and Mikyan (Ehime Prefecture’s mascot character). I took these photos below with my limited available hours during transfer etc., so this is just a bonus article.

[Visit Places (series of articles)]
* Ozu City part 1: Old town (Related article)
* Ozu City part 2: Garyu Sanso and Ozu Castle (Related article)
* Shimonada: Shimonada station (Related article)
* Imabari City: Imabari Castle etc. (Related article)
* Shimanami Kaido: Kurushima Kaikyo Bridge (Related article)
* Shodoshima Island part 1: Nijushi no Hitomi Movie Village (Related article)
* Shodoshima Island part 2: Shodoshima Olive Park (Related article)
* Shodoshima Island part 3: Angel Road (Related article)
* Shodoshima Island part 4: Meiro no machi (Maze Town) etc. (Related article)
* Matsuyama City: Tram, Botchan train and Mikyan (This article)

[Travel Dates]
2015.07.25 – 28

[Main Part]

Originally, I planned to complete a series of articles about my travel to Ehime and Kagawa Prefecture for 4 days and 3 nights at my previous post. However, I found photos of Tram and Botchan train in Matsuyama City taken with my limited available hours during transfer etc. are better than I expected, so I decided to write additional article as a bonus track. By the way, I visited Matsuyam City once before in December 2013, and went through most of the major toursist spots there such as Dogo Onsen (Dogo Hot Springs) and Matsuyama Castle. If you are interested in, please see my related articles (Part1: Dogo Hot Springs etc. and Part2: Matsuyama Castle etc. – I’m sorry, but they are currently available only in Japanese). Also, regarding Mikyan (Ehime Prefecture’s mascot character) I mentioned in my past articles above, I found I saw it around Matsuyama City quite often than when I visited there in 2013.

First day: transfer

My first destination in this travel was Ozu City. From the Matsuyama Airport, I moved to JR Matsuyama station by airport limousine and transferred to the local train to go there. During my transfer, I had free time at Matsuyama station for about 40 minutes, so I walked around the station.

At JR Matsuyama stationJR Matsuyama station 1

JR Matsuyama station 2

JR Matsuyama station 3

This is my first chance to see “Mikyan” in this trip.Ehime, National Sports Festival, Mikyan

Trams, which run in the central part of Matsuyama City.Matsuyama, Tram 1

Matsuyama, Tram 2

Matsuyama, Tram 3

Matsuyama, Tram 4

Here, I also found Mikyan.Matsuyama, Tram, Mikyan 1

Second day morning

I arranged my accommodation for the first day in Matsuyama City due to many options, though I stayed at a hotel just to sleep. On the second day morning, I had some available time, so I decided to go around the area.

First, I caught a tram to Dogo Onsen (Dogo Hot Springs) station.Matsuyama, Tram 5

I found Mikyan again on the train.Matsuyama, Tram, Mikyan 2

Matsuyama, Tram, Mikyan 3

Dogo Onsen (Dogo Hot Springs) station

I arirved at Dogo Onsen (Dogo Hot Springs) station. First of all, I watched Botchan train (a replica of the kind of steam locomotive that ran from the 1880s and the 1950s.), which is shown outside the station.Dogo Onsen (Dogo Hot Springs), Botchan train 1

Dogo Onsen (Dogo Hot Springs), Botchan train 2

Dogo Onsen (Dogo Hot Springs), Botchan train 3

Dogo Onsen (Dogo Hot Springs), Botchan train 4

Dogo Onsen (Dogo Hot Springs), Botchan train 5

Dogo Onsen (Dogo Hot Springs), Botchan train 6

Dogo Onsen (Dogo Hot Springs), Botchan train 7

Then, I took photos of trams on the platform.Dogo Onsen (Dogo Hot Springs), Tram 1

Dogo Onsen (Dogo Hot Springs), Tram 2

Dogo Onsen (Dogo Hot Springs), Tram 3

Dogo Onsen (Dogo Hot Springs), Tram 4

As this was a good chance, I decided to take Botchan train to Matsuyama City station.Dogo Onsen (Dogo Hot Springs), Botchan train 8

Botchan train, cabin 1

Botchan train, cabin 2

Matsuyama City station

I arrived at Matsuyama City station, the last stop of Botchan train. At Matsuyama City station, the locomotive and the passenger cars were separated and the locomotive was rotated manually to change in its direction.Botchan train, Matsuyama City station

Botchan train, rotation 1

Botchan train, rotation 2

Botchan train, rotation 3

Botchan train, rotation 4

Collaboration between Botchan train and tram.Botchan train, Tram

This colorful tram is a wrapping train for the event of “Mika Ninagawa x Dogo Onsen: Dogo Art 2015”.Mika Ninagawa x Dogo Onsen: Dogo Art 2015, wrapping train 1

Mika Ninagawa x Dogo Onsen: Dogo Art 2015, wrapping train, Mikyan 1

Mika Ninagawa x Dogo Onsen: Dogo Art 2015, wrapping train, Mikyan 2

Mika Ninagawa x Dogo Onsen: Dogo Art 2015, wrapping train, Mikyan 3

Ehime Prefecture’s government building

I took the wrapping tram above to the Ehime Prefecture’s government building. Mikyan greeted me in front of the building.Ehime Prefecture's government building, Mikyan 1

Ehime Prefecture's government building, Mikyan 2

Ehime Prefecture's government building, Mikyan 3

Near the Ehime Prefecture’s government building, there was a photo spot where you can take photos of tram with Matsuyama City in the background, so I took several photos there.Matsuyama Castle, Tram 1

Matsuyama Castle, Tram 2

Matsuyama Castle, Tram 3

Matsuyama Castle, Botchan train

Now was the time to leave Matsuyama CIty, so I returned to a hotel.Matsuyama, Tram 6

Matsuyama, Tram 7

After checking out of the hotel, I moved to JR Matsuyama Station by tram.Matsuyama, Tram 8

Then, I took the local train to Imabari City, the destination of the second day in my travel.JR Matsuyama station 4

[Closing]

So, that’s it for the article about Tram, Botchan train and Mikyan in Matsuyama City.

To begin with, regarding Tram and Botchan train, which runs in the central part of Matsuyama City, I think they exist beyond just means of transportation and you can consider taking them as one of your purposes in traveling to Matsuyama, if you have a chance to visit there. In that context, I would recommend “1 Day Ticket” sold by Iyotetsu, a company that operates both Tram and Botchan train. If you buy the 1 day ticket, you are able to take unlimitted rides for Tram and takeBotchan train for additional 100 yen.

As for Mikyan, Ehime’s mascot character, I realized I saw it quite often during my stay in Matsuyama compared to when I visited there last time. I think the Ehime Prefecture government has been promoting it actively. In fact, Mikyan has been participating in the Yuru-chara Grand Prix, an annual event where the most popular mascot is determined by public voting, and professes its desire to win the event this year (- Mikyan got the third place last year). The publinc voting for this year has been conducted since last month and Mikyan gets the first place at this moment (- the voting will be continuing till November). So, I hope Mikyan will win the event this year 🙂

(Postscript in December)
After this trip, I actually went to the venue of the Yuru-chara Grand Prix event (see the link), and then visited Matsuyama again to see Mikyan’s parade (see the links: part1, part2)

Now, I have completed a series of my travel articles (10 articles) about Ehime and Kagawa Prefecture for 4 days and 3 nights. Thank for your taking time in reading my articles.  As for my next travel, I am going overseas late this month to attend my foreign friend’s wedding (- it will be my first time to write about overseas trip in this blog). Thus, it may be a month later when I post my next article. During that time, I try to update and improve English pages in my blog, so please be patient for a while.

[Related Link]
Iyotetsu (information on Botchan train and1 Day Ticket, English)


2 Comments

  1. こんばんは。
    松山市内おまけありがとうございます!
    愛媛帰りたくなりました。。。天気の良い日にレンズ越しにみる松山の景色も中々いいですね。しばらく市内電車を利用していないので、ラッピングされているとは知りませんでした。見られて嬉しかったです♪

    駅をもう少しレトロに改装すれば、道後温泉までの道もふまえてもっと良い観光スポットになるのになぁ。と思う県民の一人です(笑)
    ここはひとつ、みきゃんちゃんに頑張ってもらいたいですね!

    海外!!すっごく楽しみにしています!!
    道中お気をつけて。。。

    1. michi315さん
      コメントありがとうございます。松山市内は道後温泉や松山城以外にも、この路面電車や坊ちゃん列車自体が観光目的になりうる感じですよね。それにブログでも書いていますが、みきゃんがとても愛らしいと思います。2012年のバリィさんに続いて、今年はゆるキャラグランプリで1位になって欲しいと願っています!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.