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Newer Page 10 of 947 Older Full Trip Report
Japan Niigata Toyano Lagoon

7 November 2019

Lagooning about

Walking a lap of Toyano Lagoon in Niigata

I read that Niigata is very proud of its Lagoons. That sounds like a weird boast. So today I went to check out a Lagoon. It was meant to be my rest day today, but walking from my hotel, to the station, around the lagoon and back again was about 18.5km.

The biggest and closest Lagoon to central Niigata is Toyano, its easy enough to get to on foot from the main station, there is no train that goes anywhere near it, I presume that buses do go there but every time I get on a bus I end up heading in the wrong direction and getting yelled at by the driver, so I walked.

The light today was really good for photos, which probably makes the Lagoon area look nicer than it is. There were a couple of nice gardens, a couple of museums aimed at school kids, and a bizarrely located mega stadium, one of the biggest in Japan, which is as far away from anything as possible.

The lagoon is not developed to be pedestrian friendly, there are parks at different points but not even a footpath connecting them. I was walking head long into traffic on roads barely wide enough for cars traveling in 1 direction (cool band) that actually allow cars traveling in 2 directions. Passing cars plus me = about 3x the width that was actually provided. More than once I nearly had to leap into the lagoon to prevent being run over. I actually saw a car hit its mirror on a light pole!

Japan-Niigata-Toyano Lagoon - This is crossing the Shinano river from my hotel towards the station. They are also very proud of this bridge, which has 6 archways underneath. For wh

This is crossing the Shinano river from my hotel towards the station. They are also very proud of this bridge, which has 6 archways underneath. For whatever reason Niigata likes to make lists of the things it is 'very proud' of. This is my favourite light for photos, squinty but not full sun.


Japan-Niigata-Toyano Lagoon - A view down the Shinano river from the city side. Not a lot to see.

A view down the Shinano river from the city side. Not a lot to see.


Japan-Niigata-Toyano Lagoon - I went through the station at this time to verify my plan for getting to Yamagata. I am going to take the slow train! There is only one per day! It ta

I went through the station at this time to verify my plan for getting to Yamagata. I am going to take the slow train! There is only one per day! It takes 4 hours total to Yamagata, even though its not even 200km of track. The rapid (sic) Benibana listed here takes 3 hours and goes on 3 different lines, across the mountains to Yonezawa where it is timed to connect to a train that runs much more often than once a day to go the rest of the way to Yamagata. Expect photos from a moving train on that day (Saturday).


Japan-Niigata-Toyano Lagoon - Here I am at the start of the lagoon, excellent light!

Here I am at the start of the lagoon, excellent light!


Japan-Niigata-Toyano Lagoon - I passed this very unusual hotel, it looks like you get a car parking garage with your room on top. There were a few hotels around this lagoon, most l

I passed this very unusual hotel, it looks like you get a car parking garage with your room on top. There were a few hotels around this lagoon, most looked like they were boarded up, this was the most interesting one and looks like its still operational.


Japan-Niigata-Toyano Lagoon - The lagoon is not a popular tourist attraction, not even one car in the car park.

The lagoon is not a popular tourist attraction, not even one car in the car park.


Japan-Niigata-Toyano Lagoon - Across there is the main stadium, very remotely located, 10km from the nearest train. The gardens were quite nice in this bit.

Across there is the main stadium, very remotely located, 10km from the nearest train. The gardens were quite nice in this bit.


Japan-Niigata-Toyano Lagoon - I was lined up here taking a photo... look closely and you can see something just to the right of the middle of the ledge about to pop out!

I was lined up here taking a photo... look closely and you can see something just to the right of the middle of the ledge about to pop out!


Japan-Niigata-Toyano Lagoon - Surprise turtle! He was a bit camera shy when I was close to him, always going back under the water when I raised my camera.

Surprise turtle! He was a bit camera shy when I was close to him, always going back under the water when I raised my camera.


Japan-Niigata-Toyano Lagoon - I ran a few laps. Really enjoying the light here for some reason.

I ran a few laps. Really enjoying the light here for some reason.


Japan-Niigata-Toyano Lagoon - If you sit here long enough you turn into a field worker made of straw.

If you sit here long enough you turn into a field worker made of straw.


Japan-Niigata-Toyano Lagoon - A bit more garden, there are a couple of people in this photo. I walked into a huge spiderweb here, and spent the next 10 minutes removing my clothes

A bit more garden, there are a couple of people in this photo. I walked into a huge spiderweb here, and spent the next 10 minutes removing my clothes convinced one of the huge Japanese spiders was somewhere down my shirt / pants.


Japan-Niigata-Toyano Lagoon - Here, have a bit of color, me and 2 guys with tripods were taking the same photo.

Here, have a bit of color, me and 2 guys with tripods were taking the same photo.


Japan-Niigata-Toyano Lagoon - The garden was very small, but had a few nice angles for photos.

The garden was very small, but had a few nice angles for photos.


Japan-Niigata-Toyano Lagoon - On the other side of the lagoon, I passed this hoarders house. The photo does not capture the scale of the rubbish, it gets higher and higher the furt

On the other side of the lagoon, I passed this hoarders house. The photo does not capture the scale of the rubbish, it gets higher and higher the further back it goes. There was a cave through the rubbish to a house within. I am pretty sure the roof of the house was supporting tonnes of crap.


Japan-Niigata-Toyano Lagoon - As I got around the other side, cloud had rolled in, ruining my day of awesome light. From this side you can see how strangely located that huge stadi

As I got around the other side, cloud had rolled in, ruining my day of awesome light. From this side you can see how strangely located that huge stadium is.


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