Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Road Station Akaigawa - Rest Stop Between Otaru & Lake Toya @ Hokkaido [Japan]

Driving from Otaru to Lake Toya would take us about two hours and that's pure driving!

There's no way i can endure sitting on my sharp butt for that long a period and even though i had factored in a few stopovers, i think it's fate that we chanced upon the above rest station and decided to stop for a piss.

I don't quite understand the Japanese characters but i recognise the surroundings and went to search for the station on Google Map (satellite view). It didn't take me to find out its actual name; Road Station Akaigawa.

There were two buildings and i happily bounced over to the smaller one as the pee can wait. My guess is that the carpark of the station was pretty packed and many could be already crowding the toilets.

Store was like a farmer's market and decked out with fresh, local produce! Since i had no intention to cook a meal in Japan and my mom wasn't with me (she would have identified a few vegetables to haul back to Singapore), the variety didn't quite interest me.

Fruits were more appealing but 5,000 yen (S$62) for this box of cherries was too hard to stomach, even if they were delicious! To be fair, it might be S$62 for two boxes although i still find that pricey.

Was about to pop by the main building when i spotted something right in the middle of both structures; a relaxed corner with a tiny garden. Okay, relaxed more for the adults as it's more a smoking area.

Garden was well patronised by young families with kids though and i can imagine why with the nice climate and the backdrop of rolling hills!

And there's the irresistible water feature which always proved to be a hit with young kids. Think about the time when you were a kid; to dance and play in the rain was a random yet darn fun thing to do!

It wasn't rain but you just need a few pairs of hands to splash the water to make it feel like it's drizzling! The place wasn't as elaborate as the kind we see in Singapore's shopping centres yet you can feel the joy judging from the families' laughter.

One of our travel mates bought a pack of Japanese cherries and shared with us! So kind of him and they were really nice and not deadly sweet.

Dogs on the run!

Inside the main building was a cafeteria, a store that sells souvenirs, snacks and most importantly, has a bakery wing! The bakes had such a wonderful aroma; i was persuaded to grab a few pieces.

Crispy cream danish appeared to be the popular item and it didn't cost more than S$2 each. I got one and it was delish! Buttery and not cloyingly sweet; the perfect pastry for someone who wants something not too heavy.

Got a sweet bean bun at the end too and while it wasn't out of the normal, i enjoyed the fluffiness of the bun. Regretted not buying a few more for breakfast the next morning...

Dogs again; i think it must be great being a pet dog in Japan as they were so well trained and there are ample public spaces for them to roam around. 

Time to continue our way to Lake Toya!

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