Mt. Zao

Cycling Marumori Countryside

Enjoy the fresh air while getting to know this rural town by boat and bicycle

Get off the beaten path with this day trip to Marumori, a great introduction to exploring the Japanese countryside. The little town is surrounded by mountains, yet still accessible by train. It's also flat and compact enough to get around easily by bicycle, even for beginners. The town has a few sights but nothing that typically draws large crowds, which in and of itself is part of the appeal―visitors can enjoy the atmosphere and authenticity of a small Japanese town, without a crowd or queue in sight.

  • Start
  • 1Marumori Station (Abukuma Express Line)

    Walk0 min.

    2Rent cycles at Marumori Station

    Bicycle rental at Marumori Station is free and requires no reservations! As you step off the platform and into the waiting area, you'll see the bicycles lined up near the window. Head to the sightseeing office in the room adjoining the waiting area and let the attendant there know you'd like to borrow a bicycle.


    The cycles make getting around the sights of Marumori a little faster and more convenient. Plus, nothing beats feeling the breeze on your face as you pedal from place to place on a sunny day.

    Bicycle10 min.

    3Abukuma Riverboat Cruise

    Enjoy a cruise down the tranquil Abukuma River. No reservations are required for those not ordering meals. The boat makes a round trip up and down the river, depositing you back at boat pier where your bikes are waiting.
    Bicycle5 min.

    4Ramen at Kikuya

    Kikuya (きく屋) is a mom-and-pop ramen shop popular with those in the know for their delicious ramen. They're only open for three hours a day (11:00–14:00; closed Wednesdays), so take advantage of being in Marumori at lunchtime with a stop here.
    Bicycle10 min.

    5Sairi Yashiki

    Explore the historic residence and warehouses of the wealthy Saito Risuke and family, who lived in Marumori during its heyday as a hub of trade.
    Bicycle5 min.

    6Saien-ji Temple

    Saien-ji (西円寺) is a peaceful temple with a lovely garden you'll likely have to yourself. The temple is also home to eight nekogamisama (lit. "cat god") stones, as cats were once worshipped in the Marumori area.
    Bicycle15 min.

    7Coffee break CawaCafe

    Enjoy an afternoon pick-me-up of coffee and sweets at CawaCafe (カワカフェ) just across the street from the Abukuma River. Their coffee excellent―one of the few cafes in Miyagi that offer it French-pressed. The Nekogamisama (lit. "Cat God") Blend is particularly good, both for the local relevance of its namesake as well as its balanced, full-bodied flavor. Sweets-wise, the cafe is best known for its muffins made with odd-yet-delicious combinations of traditional, local ingredients: strawberry-matcha, heso daikon-caramel, etc.
    Bicycle10 min.

    8Return bicycles

    Return your bicycles at Marumori Station, then hop on the train back to your hotel or off to Sendai for nightlife!

Course Map

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