Location of Mannō in Kagawa Prefecture
|• Mayor||Takayoshi Kurita|
|• Total||194.33 km2 (75.03 sq mi)|
|Population (April 1, 2012)|
|• Density||97/km2 (250/sq mi)|
|Time zone||Japan Standard Time (UTC+9)|
|City hall address||Yoshino-shimo430, Manno-cho, Nakatado-gun, Kagawa-ken
As of September 2011, the town has an estimated population of 19,933. The total area is 194.33 km².
The town of Manno was formed on March 20, 2006, as a result of a municipal merger between the towns of Manno (満濃町), Chunan (仲南町), and Kotonami (琴南町). The written name of Manno was designated as まんのう町 at this time.
Nestled in the mountains, this lake reservoir is one of the largest in Japan, with a volume of 15,400,000 m3. Kagawa has low rainfall, so rain dances and water reservoirs have been important throughout history, particularly for rice production. The original dam was built here about 1,300 years ago, from 701 to 704 by Michimori Ason. In 821 the dam lay in disrepair and a larger version was built by the infamous Kobo Daishi (Kukai) on the Emperor’s request. Since then the dam has fallen into disrepair and been rebuilt 3 times to reach its current size.
The water is used for rice paddy irrigation, and every year in June there is a ceremony to start the yearly flow. Four tonnes of water gush out every second to reach rice paddies as far away as Marugame City. There is also a shrine and a temple near the lakefront.
Recommended cycling course (halve times if driving): Rent a bicycle in Kotohira～(40 minute cycle)～まんのう池Manno Lake～かりん亭Karin Tei Home Made Udon～(10minute cycle)～まんのう公園Sanuki Manno National Park～(40 minute cycle)～Arrive back at琴平駅Kotohira Station.
There are flower gardens for all four seasons, forest walks, large-scale events, rent a cycles and other fun activities. Boasts the largest camping car, sports and recreation area in Shikoku.
Recommended cycling course (halve times if driving):Rent a bicycle in Kotohira ～(20 minute cycle)～Pick up some bread and sweets at Currents Bakery (カレンズ)～(20 minute cycle)～まんのう公園Sanuki Manno National Park～(Cycle 5 minutes)～まんのう池Manno Lake～(40 minute cycle)～琴平駅Kotohira Station.
In winter the “Winter Fantasy” illumination, one of the largest in Japan, is held. Some nights have a fireworks display. There is also an illumination on Valentine’s Day.
Access：Take the free shuttle bus from Kotohira Station
- Sunflower fields and the Sunflower Festival:
250,000 sunflowers are grown every year over 5 hectares, a summer tradition in the Chunan area of Manno Town.
The Sunflower Festival is held in July every year. A photo contest, sketching and live Jazz feature and there are sunflower seed ice-cream, croquettes and salad dressing stalls. There is also sunflower seed fed beef and other food for sale.
Recommended cycling course (halve times if driving):Rent a bicycle in Kotohira～(40 minutes cycle)～まんのう池Manno Lake～かりん亭Karin Tei Home Made Udon～(15 minutes cycle)～ひまわり祭りSunflower Festival～(40 minutes cycle)～金刀比羅宮Konpirasan (the Shrine in Kotohira, you will need at least 30 minutes to climb upall the stairs)～琴平駅Kotohira Station.
- Ayako Rain Dance:
This rain dance festival is famous for men dancing in women’s Furisode Kimono. Kagawa has low rainfall so rain dances and water reservoirs have been important throughout history, particularly for rice production. More than 1,000 years ago the infamous Kukai felt sorry for the local people facing drought and taught the rain dance to a woman named Aya. She danced, it rained and so began the Ayako Dance Festival. The dance is performed biannually on even numbered years, usually on the last Sunday in August or the first in September. It is performed at 佐文加茂神社 (Sabumi Kamo Shrine) in the 仲南(Chunan) area. In 1976 it was registered as one of Japan’s important cultural assets.
Recommended cycling course (halve times if driving): Rent a bicycle in Kotohira～(30 minutes cycle)～綾子踊～(30 minutes cycle)～金刀比羅宮Konpirasan (the Shrine in Kotohira, you will need at least 30 minutes to climb up all the stairs)～琴平駅Kotohira Station
- Daisen Buddhist Rain Dance:
This rain dance takes place on the top of the second highest mountain in the Sanuki Mountain Range, Daisenzan(大川山). During prayers to end a drought in 734, it is said that a white snake came out of a pond, turned into a dragon, flew up to heaven and called the rainclouds in to make it rain. It is registered as a cultural asset in Kagawa. It is held on the closest Sunday to June 14 ON THE LUNAR CALENDAR (you will need to look online to find the equivalent modern date).
Recommended driving course (only rent a cycle if you have time and don’t mind up-hill cycling): 琴平駅Kotohira Station～(50 minutes by car)～大川念仏踊り～(15 minutes by car)～美霞洞渓谷～(5 minutes by car)～エピアみかどEpia Mikado～(40 minutes by car)～琴平駅Kotohira Station.
Onsen(Japanese Style Hot Spring)
- Epia Mikado:
A rest area facility near the border of Tokushima Prefecture. 美霞洞温泉(Mikado Hot Springs) was endorsed by the great 18th-century inventor Hiraga Gennai. The white cloudy water has an interesting texture and boasts to be one of the best quality springs in Kagawa. There is also a restaurant, shop with local goods and a small produce market.
Recommended Driving Course (only rent a cycle if you have time and don’t mind up-hill cycling): 琴平駅Kotohira Station～(50 minutes by car)～まんのう公園Sanuki Manno National Park～(15 minutes by car)～美霞洞渓谷～(5 minutes by car)～エピアみかどEpia Mikado～(50 minutes by car)～琴平駅Kotohira Station
- Shioiri Onsen:
These springs have alkaline medicinal waters. Restaurant, Shop, Local Produce. Shippoku Udon is great but only available in the cold season. The set lunch is also good and sometimes sells out early. There are 5 lodges that can be rented out, with an outdoor barbeque area for good times.
Recommended Driving Course (only rent a cycle if you have time and don’t mind up-hill cycling): 琴平駅 Kotohira Station～金刀比羅宮 Konpirasan (the Shrine in Kotohira, you will need at least 30 minutes to climb up all the stairs)～(20 minutes by car)～満濃池 Manno Lake～(15 minutes by car)～塩入温泉 Shioiri Onsen・Shippoku Udon～(30 minutes by car)～琴平駅 Kotohira