Learn about Otaru

Learn about Otaru

[ Sept.2014 ] This is a photo of an old shop.

The people in Otaru was very much worried about fire, so they made many stone houses.

In this one’s case, the shop and warehouse are made of stone, but residential space are wooden.

” For Japanese people, living space has to be wooden” said the Rickshaw driver, who guided us in Otaru.

Now Otaru is famous tourist destination, but one time it became very poor, after the herring fishing, shipping, and coal industry died down.

People started talking about filling the canal to make a wide road, but some people opposed.

Apparently it took as long as 10 years for them to decide what to do with this canal.

The interesting thing is that during the 10 years, the canal was on the news many times.

So people heard the name of Otaru and started visiting here.

That was the beginning of the tourism.

Now not only Japanese visitors, but last 5-6 years, Asian visitors are rapidly increasing.

Another interesting thing was that the hydrants, which are usually underground, are standing on the ground here.

And there is a high pole on top of it so that people can see where they are in the snow.

That means the snow will get high as much as that.

Also, there were lines on the roads which looked like a cycling road, but this was not the space for cyclists or Rickshaws, but for the removed snow to pile up.

So many counties, so many customs…