Friday 2 June
Today we picked up our hire car with the driving to be shared between our two trusty drivers, Vaughan and Anthony. The route I had mapped out for us was slightly bizarre! In our nine days in Kyushu we travelled West to East to West to North to South, but it was the only way I could see to get every place in that we wanted to visit. It was hard also because Anthony in his excitement kept calling out different places he wanted to visit. And so it went…
We drove first to Kokonoe Bridge. It is 390 meters long, 173 meters high, 1.5 meters broad and it is the highest suspension walking bridge in Japan. Vaughan actually experienced vertigo on this bridge. It was extremely windy in the middle of the bridge. You can see Mimata Mt. and Waita Mt in the distance.
After this hair raising experience we stopped somewhere in the mountains for lunch. Found such a quaint place. Scenery was incredible from here.
Then onto Beppu with a brief stop in Yufuin a popular hot spring resort. We’re now in the Oita Prefecture.
Arrived late afternoon to Beppu Bay Royal Hotel overlooking the ocean. Just the one night here – why? Anthony said he liked the sound of the name Beppu. The hotel was situated just outside the town but I chose it because of the perfect views especially from our bedroom window.
As there were not any restaurants around the hotel we taxied into town around 15 minutes away and found a great Korean BBQ place. Food was delicious and our waiter hilarious. A good night.
And so next morning onto Kumamoto.