Lake Hamana is located near the southwestern end of Shizuoka Prefecture.
It is between Hamamatsu city, the second largest city in Shizuoka Prfecture, and Toyohashi city, the main city in east part of Aichi Prefecture.
It is about 11 km from east to west and about 14 km from north to south.
The southen end of the lake has a mouth to Pacific Ocean, so this lake has brackish water.
Originally, this lake was a bay in early times.
But shore current of Pacific Ocean carried sands, then the south part of the bay had been blocked from the sea and it became a lake.
In historical times, it had been a freshwater lake.
In 1498, the great earthquake occured around the southern coast of
Honshu Island, particularly in Shizuoka Prefecture.
Many great tsunami (seismic sea wave) hit the southern coast of Honshu island widely, and the beach separating Lake Hamana from the sea was broken then this lake was connected with the sea.
And the water of lake has been brackish.
Lake Hamana has been well-known for cultured eel.
To be exact, the eels are cultured in the ponds around Lake Hamana, and here had been the largest production center in Japan until the 1980s.
Now the amount of production around here is decreacing, but there are many restaurants for eel dish around here.
Tomei Expressway connecting between Tokyo and Nagoya runs through the
north part of the lake.
And Tokaido Shinkansen and JR Tokaido Line run through the southern part of the lake.
When we travel on a train of the Shinkansen or JR, we can see a broad view of the lake between Hamamatsu and Toyohashi.
It is the popular hot spring resort around Lake Hamana, and is located
near the northeast lakeside.
It was opened in 1958, and there are more than a dozen hotels and ryokans.
There is old Kanzanji temple founded in 810 in this area.
Around the hot spring resort, there are an amusement park "Hamanako Pal Pal", municipal zoo, and "Hamamatsu Flower park".
And the ropeway to Mount Ookusa (113 meters high) is operated and the top is an observatory.
The pleasure boat touring around Lake Hamana is operated.
It is a small island located at the south part of Lake Hamana.
This island was originally a small peninsula of the lakeside, and was formed by cutting off by the earthquake in 1498.
Here is the popular spots for digging clams at the beach and playing marine sports. There are some hotels are in this island.
Tokaido Shinkansen, JR Tokaido Line and National Route 1 run through this island. Bentenjima station on JR is set up.
To the south, we can see the big red Torii gate in the lake and the bridge of the road over the mouth to the Pacific Ocean.
It is a checkpoint used in Edo Period (1603-1868), and is located at
the southwest lakeside. It is positioned about 0.7 km west of JR
Tokaido roure between Tokyo and Kyoto, Osaka has been the most important route in Japan, so some checkpoints were set up on the route in Edo Period.
This checkpoint also was one of them, and all travelers through here was checked their passports.
The buildings of Arai checkpoint were rebuilt in 1855, and it is the only existing original ones in Japan.
From Hamamatsu station, about 50 minutes to Kanzanji, about 40 minutes
From Kanzanji, about 25 minutes to Bentenjima.
Fuji Safari Park
Miho pine grove