Tsuruga, a Port City and a Railway City
Tsuruga Symbol Road runs along the shopping arcade that extends from Tsuruga Station to Kehi Jingu Shrine, and features lots of bronze statues of characters from Galaxy Express 999 and Space Battleship Yamato (Star Blazers). Why is it, though, that Tsuruga is home to bronze statues of characters from these two series by Leiji Matsumoto? Here’s a hint: Galaxy Express 999 features themes of railways, science, and the future, while Space Battleship Yamato features themes of ports, science, and the future.Tsuruga was the first city on the Sea of Japan coast to build a railway. The Europe-Asia International Express once ran from Tokyo to Paris via Tsuruga Port Station. In 1957, Tsuruga was the first city to fully electrify its trains with alternating current, and five years later, the Hokuriku Tunnel was opened, at the time the longest in Japan and fifth longest in the world.Tsuruga, being a key point for transportation on the Sea of Japan coast, made its name in Japan as both a preeminent port city and railway city. Bronze statues were placed along Tsuruga Symbol Road in 1999 to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the opening of Tsuruga Port, matching Tsuruga’s vision of the future with the city’s image: a city of science, a port city, and a railway city.
- Traffic access
- By car: Approx. 10 min. from Tsuruga IC on the Hokuriku Expressway
- Along the shopping arcade from Tsuruga Station to Kehi Jingu Shrine