Travel Tips

Most Popular Sightseeing Spots with Musallas Close By in Tohoku Region

Tohoku Region refers to the northeastern portion of Japan’s main island Honshu, and consists of 6 prefectures being Aomori, Iwate, Miyagi, Akita, Yamagata, and Fukushima. The region holds a wealth of history, culture, and an abundance of nature, with unique sights to see during every season at locations scattered across the different prefectures. And it’s accessible to boot! Aomori, located at the utmost end of Honshu, is the very edge of Tohoku; but it takes you only a short 3-hour train ride from Tokyo!

When heading from Tokyo to what’s often called the entrance of the Tohoku Region, Sendai in Miyagi Prefecture, the shinkansen (Japanese bullet train) should always be your first choice. You can even get yourself a JR RAILWAY PASS or JR EAST PASS to save some money during your trip!
Some of Sendai’s representative sightseeing spots include the Sendai Castle Remains, and the equestrian statue of the castle’s first owner, Date Masamune. The castle has an observation deck from which you can look out onto cherry blossom trees in spring, some beautiful colors during fall, or simply great views of modern everyday Sendai City. If you are in the area, make sure to not miss out visiting the extravagant Zuihōden Temple which honors Date Masamune as well.
If you’re looking for somewhere to stay inside of Sendai, then we highly recommend the Hotel Metropolitan Sendai which has 2 restaurants, Restaurant & Café Serenity and Japanese Restaurant HAYASE that both offer halal menu items. The hotel itself is situated a convenient 1-minute walk from Sendai Station, allowing for easy-access to nearby mosques and sightseeing locations.

Sightseeing Spots Close to Sendai Station:

Sendai Castle
Address: 1 Kawauchi, Aoba Ward, Sendai City, Miyagi
Access: Sendai Station → [Bus] Approx. 25 Minutes → Sendai Castle Ruins Bus Stop

Zuihōden Temple
Address: 23-2 Otamayashita, Aoba Ward, Sendai City, Miyagi
Access: Sendai Station → [Bus] Approx. 15 Minutes → Zuihoden-mae Bus Stop → 5-minute Walk

Hotel Metropolitan Sendai
Address: 1-1-1 Chuo, Aoba Ward, Sendai City, Miyagi
TEL: +81-22-268-2525
Nearest station/bus stop: Sendai Station (Approx. 1-min walk)
Hotel Metropolitan Sendai

Japanese Restaurant HAYASE
Open: Breakfast 6:30-10:00, Lunch 11:00-14:00, Dinner 17:00-21:30 (Last order 21:00)
Closed: No regular holiday
Lunch: JPY4,000
Dinner: JPY10,000
English/foreign language speaking staff: Sometimes available
Japanese Restaurant HAYASE

Restaurant & Café Serenity
Open: Breakfast 6:30-10:00, Lunch 11:00-15:30 (Last order 14:30), Dinner 17:00-21:30 (Last order 21:00)
Closed: No regular holiday
Price: JPY3,600-6,000
English/foreign language speaking staff: Sometimes available
Restaurant & Café Serenity

We’re sure one of your worries when thinking about a trip is if there’s a place to pray nearby or not. We’re happy to share that there are actually many prayer facilities in Tohoku, alongside many places with restaurants that specifically cater to Muslim visitors as well! Here onwards, we’re going to take a look at some of our most recommended sightseeing spots that are close to places where you can freely complete your prayers.

① Miyagi Prefecture: Sendai International Airport

Tohoku’s largest airport, Sendai International Airport is fully equipped with facilities for praying. On top of that, on Sundays and holidays, you’ll find a morning market nearby known as Yuriage Harbor Morning Market; where you can see and purchase ultra-fresh fish and vegetables, or even take part in their free-to-join daily auction session and bag some stellar produce deals for yourself! You can also reach Sendai Station, a hub to reach many other sightseeing spots around Sendai, without needing to change trains even once straight from the airport station
If there’s one location we could recommend near Sendai Station, it has to be the Sendai City Agriculture & Horticulture Center Midori no Mori; where you can see beautiful seasonal flowers, experience picking fruits and vegetables, and shop for some great souvenirs. Then there’s also the Sendai Umino-Mori Aquarium, where you can see and learn about many species of fish from Japan’s ocean; including a school of over 25,000 Japanese pilchards! Finally, how about taking a break by surrounding yourself with nature and experiencing something a little more traditional at the National Michinoku Forest Lakeside Park? These are all amazing locations to try and fit into your schedule!

Sendai International Airport Information
Address: Minamihara, Shimomasuda, Natori City, Miyagi
TEL: +81-22-383-4301
Open: 6:10-21:30
Closed: No regular holiday
Nearest station/bus stop: Sendai Airport (Approx. 1-min walk)
Capacity of praying space: 1 person
English/foreign language speaking staff: Always available
Water Supply Available
Access: Sendai Station → [Sendai International Airport Access Line] Approx. 30 Minutes → Sendai International Airport
Sendai International Airport

Sightseeing Spots Close to Sendai International Airport:

Sendai City Agriculture & Horticulture Center Midori no Mori
Address: 13-1, Arai Kirishinden, Wakabayashi Ward, Sendai, Miyagi
TEL: +81-22-762-9688
Open: 8:30-17:00
Access: Sendai Station → [Sendai Subway Tozai Line] Approx. 15 Minutes → [Bus] Approx. 10 Minutes → Disembark at Agriculture Engei Center-mae Bus Stop → 5-minute Walk
Sendai City Agriculture & Horticulture Center Midori no Mori

Sendai Umino-Mori Aquarium
Address: 4-6 Nakano, Miyagino Ward, Sendai City, Miyagi
TEL: +81-22-355-2222
Open: 9:00-17:30
Closed: N/A
Access: Sendai Station → [JR] Approx. 18 Minutes → Disembark at Nakanosakae Station → Approx. 15-minute Walk (Approx. 10 Minutes via Shuttle Bus)
Sendai Umino-Mori Aquarium

National Michinoku Forest Lakeside Park
Address: 53-9 Nihonmatsu Aza Ono, Kawasaki Town, Shibata District, Miyagi
TEL: +81-224-84-5991
Open: 9:30-17:00(Summer [7/1~8/31] – 9:30-18:00, Winter [11/1~end of February] – 9:30-16:00)
Closed: Every Tuesday (closed on the following Wednesday if Tuesday is a national holiday)
Access: Sendai Station → [Bus: Akiu・Kawasaki Sendai Seibu Liner] Approx. 70 Minutes → Disembark at National Michinoku Forest Lakeside Park Bus Stop
National Michinoku Forest Lakeside Park

Yuriage Harbor Morning Market
Address: 5-23-20 Yuriage, Natori City, Miyagi
TEL: +81-22-395-7211
Open: Every Sunday / Public Holiday 6:00-13:00
Access: Sendai International Airport → [Taxi] Approx. 10-15 Minutes
Yuriage Harbor Morning Market

➁ Miyagi Prefecture:Sendai Mosque (ICCS – Islamic Cultural Center of Sendai)

Sendai Mosque is a short 20 minutes away from Sendai Station. And around 1 hour from the closest station to Sendai Mosque, you can reach a well-known tourism spot known as the Naruko Gorge; which is famous for its nature and beautiful colors in both summer and fall. It’s also close to Shiroishi Castle, which in turn, is extremely famous for its winter scenery.
If you have some extra time when visiting Shiroishi Castle, you can also head over to Shiroishi Station and take the bus to a nearby spot – the Okama Caldera Lake. The place is perfect for people who want to experience nature-filled journeys across the different seasons of each year!

Sendai Mosque Information
Address: 7-7-24, Hachiman, Aoba Ward, Sendai City, Miyagi
TEL: +81-2-226-2625
Nearest station/bus stop: Kuzuoka Station (Approx. 17-min walk)
English/foreign language speaking staff: Always available
Water Supply Available
Access: Sendai Station → [JR] Approx. 20 Minutes → Kuzuoka Station → Approx. 17-minute Walk
Sendai Mosque

Sightseeing Spots Close to Sendai Mosque (ICCS – Islamic Cultural Center of Sendai):

Naruko Gorge
Address: Naruko Onsen, Osaki City, Miyagi
Access: Sendai Station → [Shinkansen] Approx. 15 Minutes → Furukawa Station → [JR] Approx. 40 Minutes → Naruko-Onsen Station → [Taxi] Approx. 10 Minutes
From Sendai Mosque: Kuzuoka Station → [JR] Approx. 20 Minutes → Sendai Station → [Shinkansen] Approx. 15 Minutes → Furukawa Station → [JR] Approx. 40 Minutes → Naruko-Onsen Station → [Taxi] Approx. 10 Minutes

Shiroishi Castle
Address 1-16, Masuoka Town, Shiroishi City, Miyagi
Access: Sendai Station → [JR] Approx. 50 Minutes → Shiroishi Station → Approx. 10-minute Walk
From Sendai Mosque: Kuzuoka Station → [JR] Approx. 20 Minutes → Sendai Station → [JR] Approx. 50 Minutes → Shiroishi Station → Approx. 10-minute Walk

Okama
Address: Kawasaki Town, Shibata District, Miyagi
Access Shiroishi Station → [Bus] Approx. 1 Hour 40 Minutes

➂ Miyagi Prefecture:Kesennuma, a quaint fishing town with Warung Mahal, a well-equipped Indonesian Halal restaurant

Kesennuma is known for having the highest shark haul rates in the whole of Japan. Though it is a fair distance away from Sendai Mosque; it is a port town perfect for a day-trip, with many fresh fish to offer. It also has Warung Mahal, an Indonesian restaurant with friendly staff, delicious halal food, and an in-house prayer room. As for other locations to check out while you’re here, Umi no Ichi is a seaside mall with many small shops, restaurants, and even a shark museum! There’s also the Rias Ark Museum where you can enjoy local contemporary artwork as well as learn about past catastrophic level events such as large-scale earthquakes and tsunamis that Kesennuma has braved through. Finally, there’s Mount Anba, which you can climb in a mere 15 minutes and be rewarded with amazing sights; including a great top view of the seaside town of Kesennuma sprawled out down below.

Warung Mahal Information
Address: (Mishione Yokocho) 4-5, Uoichiba-mae, Kesennuma City, Miyagi
TEL: +81-80-8704-5203
Open: 11:00-14:00, 18:00-23:00
Closed: Tuesday
Nearest station/bus stop: Kesennuma Station 8-min (1-min walk)
Capacity of praying space: 6-10 people
Praying equipment: for both men and women, mat, compass, Quran
Lunch: JPY600-1,000
Dinner: JPY1,000-2,500
English/foreign language speaking staff: Always available
Access: Sendai Station → [Shinkansen] Approx. 35 Minutes → Ichinoseki Station → [JR] Approx. 85 Minutes → Kesennuma Station → [JR] Approx. 10 Minutes → Minami-Kesennuma Station → Approx. 15-minute Walk
Warung Mahal

Sightseeing Spots Close to Warung Mahal:

Umi no Ichi
Address: 7-13, Uoichibamae, Kesennuma City, Miyagi
TEL: +81-226-24-5755
Open: Oct – Apr 10~4月/8:00-17:00 May – Sep 5~9月/8:00-18:00
Closed: Jan – Jun: Irregular Holidays, Jul – Dec: N/A
Access: Sendai Station → [Shinkansen] Approx. 35 Minutes → Ichinoseki Station → [JR] Approx. 85 Minutes → Kesennuma Station → [Bus] Approx. 10 Minutes → Umi no Ichi Bus Station
From Warung Mahal: Minami-Kesennuma Station → [JR] Approx. 10 Minutes → Kesennuma Station → [Bus] Approx. 10 Minutes → Umi no Ichi Bus Stop
Umi no Ichi

Kesennuma Shark Museum
Open: Oct – Apr /9:00-17:00 (Final Entry: 16:30) May – Sep /9:00-18:00 (Final Entry: 17:00)
Closed: Jan – Jun: Irregular Holidays, Jul – Dec: N/A
Kesennuma Shark Museum

Rias Ark Museum
Address: 138-5, Akaiwa Makisawa, Kesennuma City, Miyagi
TEL: +81-226-24-1611
Open: 9:30-17:00 (Last entry at 16:30)
Closed: Monday and Tuesday, excluding National holidays that fall on Monday and Tuesday.
Access: Sendai Station → [Shinkansen] Approx. 35 Minutes → Ichinoseki Station → Kesennuma Station → [Taxi] Approx. 20 Minutes
From Warung Mahal: Minami-Kesennuma Station → [JR] Approx. 10 Minutes → Kesennuma Station → [Taxi] Approx. 20 Minutes
Rias Ark Museum

Mount Anba
Address: Machiura, Kesennuma City, Miyagi
Access: Sendai Station → [Shinkansen] Approx. 35 minutes → Ichinoseki Station → [JR] Approx. 10 minutes → Kesennuma Station → Approx. 30-minute Walk
From Warung Mahal: Minami-Kesennuma Station → [JR] Approx. 10 Minutes → Kesennuma Station → Approx. 30-minute Walk

➃ Iwate Prefecture:Historic town, Hiraizumi and Kaburaya, a Halal Restaurant with a Musalla

Iwate Prefecture, which can be found next to Miyagi Prefecture, has a historic town known as Hiraizumi that was the base of operations for the once powerful Fujiwara clan within Tohoku around 800 years ago. Said to have once even rivaled Kyoto in beauty and elegance, within Hiraizumi you’ll find 5 different structures that are registered as World Cultural Heritage Sites. One of these sites, the Konjiki-do of Chusonji Temple, is a temple covered in gold and a must-see if you’re in the area. 3 of these 5 sites can actually be found within the Motsuji Temple Jōdo Garden, which is well-known and is one of the most prestigious in Japan. Of course, the area also has a halal restaurant that includes an in-house prayer room known as Kaburaya, which is great for peace of mind during your trip!

Kaburaya Information
Address: 2-13, Iwai Town, Ichinoseki City, Iwate
TEL: +81-191-26-3671
Open: 11:30-14:30, 17:00-22:00 (Reservation Only)
Closed: Tuesday
Nearest station/bus stop: Ichinoseki Station (Approx. 20-min walk)
Capacity of praying space: 1 person
Praying equipment: mat
Lunch: JPY1,000-2,000
Dinner: JPY3,000-10,000
English/foreign language speaking staff: Sometimes available
Water Facilities Available
Access: Sendai Station → [Shinkansen] Approx. 35 Minutes → Ichinoseki Station → Approx. 20-minute Walk
Kaburaya

Sightseeing Spots Close to Kaburaya:

Motsuji Temple Jōdo Garden
Address: 58 Aza Osawa, Hiraizumi, Hiraizumi Town, Nishiiwai District, Iwate
TEL: 0191-46-2331
Open: 8:30-17:00
Entrance Fee: Adult JPY700, High School Student JPY400, Elementary / Middle School Student JPY200
Access: Sendai Station → [Shinkansen] Approx. 35 Minutes → Ichinoseki Station → [JR] Approx. 10 Minutes → Hiraizumi Station → Approx. 10-Minute Walk
Motsuji Temple Jōdo Garden

Konjikido of Chusonji Temple
Address: 202 Aza Koromonoseki,Hiraizumi, Hiraizumi-cho, Nishiiwai-gun, Iwate
TEL: 0191-46-2211
Open: Mar 1 – Nov 3 / 8:30 – 17:00, Nov 4 – End of Feb / 8:30 – 16:30
Entrance Fee: Adult JPY800, High School Student JPY500, Middle School Student JPY300, Elementary School Student JPY200
Access: Sendai Station → [Shinkansen] Approx. 35 Minutes → Ichinoseki Station → [JR] Approx. 10 Minutes → Hiraizumi Station → [Taxi] Approx. 5 Minutes
Konjikido of Chusonji Temple

➄ Fukushima Prefecture:True-to-its-name Muslim-Friendly HALAL Restaurant in Fukushima’s largest city, Iwaki/ Halal

In Iwaki city of Fukushima, you’ll find the sea, mountains, rivers, natural hot springs, and historic spots filled with interesting sites. There are many facilities and locations we could recommend in the surrounding area, but we especially recommend checking out the Aquamarine Fukushima aquarium which has beautifully recreated Fukushima’s rivers, coasts and ocean environments, including the life that makes its home there. There’s also the Iwaki City Coal & Fossil Museum; where you can learn about…Yep, you guessed it! Coal and fossils!
There’s a few more places we’d highly recommend not missing out on if you’re in the area, one being one of only 16 climbable lighthouses in all of Japan: The Shioyamisaki Lighthouse. If you climb the staircase all the way to the top, you’re able to look out onto the enormous Pacific Ocean and its coastline. And if you’re worried about prayers and halal food here, look no further than HALAL Restaurant and their many halal dishes; which include curry, Asian food, and western food. They also have an in-house prayer room!

HALAL Restaurant Information
Address: 97-14 Fukiya, Jobanyumoto Town, Iwaki City, Fukushima
TEL: +81-246-38-5519
Open: Mon,-Thu.11:00-19:30, Weekends and Holidays 11:00-14:00
Closed: Friday , The 2nd and 4th Saturdays, end year and New Year
Nearest station/bus stop: Joban Line’s Yumoto Station (Approx. 3-min walk)
Capacity of praying space: 4 people
Praying equipment: mat
Price: JPY700-1,500
Water Facilities Available
Access: Tokyo Station → [JR Express] Approx. 2 Hours 10 Minutes → Yumoto Station → Approx. 5-minute Walk
Sendai Station → [Shinkansen] Approx. 2 Hours 10 Minutes → [JR Express] Approx. 2 Hours 10 Minutes → Yumoto Station → Approx. 5-minute Walk
HALAL Restaurant

Sightseeing Spots Close to Halal Restaurant:

Aquamarine Fukushima
Address: 50 Tatsumi Town, Onahama, Iwaki City, Fukushima
TEL: 0246-73-2525
Open: Mar 21 – Nov 30 / 9:00 17:30, Dec 1 – Mar 20 / Dec 1 – Mar 20
Entrance Fee: Adult JPY1,850 Elementary – High School Student JPY900
Access: Ueno Station (Tokyo) → [JR Express] Approx. 2 Hours 30 Minutes → Izumi Station → [Bus] Approx. 15 Minutes → AEON MALL Iwaki Onahama → Approx. 5-minute Walk
Sendai Station → [JR Express] Approx. 2 Hours 15 Minutes → Izumi Station → [Bus] Approx. 15 Minutes → AEON MALL Iwaki Onahama → Approx. 5-minute Walk
Yumoto Station → [JR] Approx. 5 Minutes → Izumi Station → AEON MALL Iwaki Onahama → Approx. 5-minute Walk
Aquamarine Fukushima

Iwaki City Coal & Fossil Museum
Address: 3-1 Mukaida, Jobanyumoto Town, Iwaki City, Fukushima
TEL: 0246-42-3155
Open: 9:00-17:00
Entrance Fee: Adult JPY660 Middle & High School Student – University Student JPY440 Elementary School Student JPY330
Closed: Every 3rd Tuesday (The following Wednesday if the day is a public holiday) and Jan 1
Access: Ueno Station (Tokyo) → [JR Express] Approx. 2 Hours → Yumoto Station → Approx. 10-minute Walk
Sendai Station → [Shinkansen] Approx. 50 Minutes → Koriyama Station → [JR] Approx. 1 Hour 35 Minutes → Iwaki Station → [JR] Approx. 10 Minutes → Yumoto Station → Approx. 10-minute Walk
Iwaki City Coal & Fossil Museum

Shioyamisaki Lighthouse
Address: 34 Yadozaki Tairausuiso, Iwaki City, Fukushima
TEL: 0246-39-3924
Open: Weekdays / Weekends + Public Holidays (Oct – Feb): 9:00-16:00 (Last Entry 15:30)
Fee: Middle School or above JPY300
Close: During bad weather (such as strong winds).
Access: Iwaki Station → [Bus] Approx. 30 Minutes → Lighthouse Entrance → Approx. 10-minute Walk
Shioyamisaki Lighthouse

In this article, we only introduced Miyagi Prefecture, Fukushima Prefecture, and Iwate Prefecture; but rest assured, there are many more interesting locations to visit within the Tohoku Region. That’s just how vast the region is! So big that perhaps visiting all the locations we’ve listed in one go might prove a bit of a challenge… We recommend picking 1-2 locations that interest you the most, as even one of these places would most definitely provide for a great trip!