When we rented the camper van the owner warned us to be careful especially from the 3rd day on because its when usually one gets more used to driving the camper van and starts to get over confident and careless.
Obviously, the camper van came with insurance but it was this kind of coverage in which in case of an accident the first 100,000 yen would have to come out of our pockets and after that the insurance covered the rest.
No one wants an accident for obvious reasons but the 100,000-yen payment was enough to motivate me to drive extra carefully. But by the 8th day, I was really used to driving the van, I guess I was getting over confident and started to feel as if I was driving any other normal car, normal for me means the tiny cars I’m used to driving. However, normal cars and camper vans have a big difference in height, something that I forgot to consider.
As with this kind of things everything happened to fast to avoid what my clumsiness had deemed inevitable. I didn’t see the signs that the parking lot owner made trying to warn me, my parents didn’t have time to warn me, and I did not see the roof protruding right besides the spot where I meant to park.
The screechy scratching sound of metal to metal told me immediately that I had fucked up but it was already too late, the damage was done. I had put a huge hole in the van.
Me, reproaching myself for my carelessness, the huge hole in the van, the idea of paying 100,000-yen hovering over my head took away all my happy camper thoughts and I had no more desire to go and see Itsukushima. But there was a hero among us.
My dad simply said that he could easily repair that with just a few items we could find in any home centre. He said not to worry and that we should keep going with our plan and enjoy the day in Itsukushima, he would fix the car later.
I couldn’t believe it! Even though I knew my dad was a mechanic I wasn’t aware that mechanics could fix the outside of cars as well and even if he had the ability to fix it, wouldn’t he need all the million tools that a mechanic usually has in his shop?
And that’s how thanks to my dad we could still enjoy Itsukushima even after my blunder.
Ok, so now that the story is over this is some info on Itsukushima, the most famous torii in Japan.
You probably noticed that some people call this island just off the shore of Hiroshima by 2 different names, “Itsukushima” and “Miyajima”. Well, apparently both are referring to the exact same place and it is just a matter of preference how you call it. The official name is Itsukushima, however, Miyajima is so common that most tourist companies prefer to call it Miyajima because the kanji is easier to write and pronounce.
Shrine hours: 6:30am – 6:30pm
Ferry hours: 6:00 – 6:00pm (but depends on which ferry company)
Shrine ticket: 300 yen per person and you can come in and out as many times as you want.
Ferry ticket: 180 yen (one way) it’s about a 20-minute ride to the island from Hiroshima.
World heritage site: No, but it is a world cultural heritage site.
Are dogs allowed?
Yes. You can take your dog on the JR ferry ride as well just so long as you keep it inside a bag or a cage at all times during the ride and do not go inside the indoor areas of the ferry. And it doesn’t cost extra to take your dog.
For my Whiskey, at 5 years old she experienced her first ferry ride ever and she was so calm, so used to travelling already.
In the island your dog can walk normally, but inside the shrine you dog must be carried in a bag or cage and is not allowed to walk on the shrine floors. As long as you keep to this rule there is no problem with dogs inside and it also doesn’t cost extra.