Tottori Prefecture, with a population of about 550,000, is the prefecture with the least population among the 47 prefectures. Nevertheless, there are two airports in the east and west, meaning there are more people visiting for sightseeing than people living there and what's more - it is also an attractive tourist destination!
In fact, Tottori airports are the only two major airports in the world named after manga! One is Tottori Sand Dunes Conan Airport (鳥取砂丘コナン空港) and the other is Yonago Kitaro Airport (米子鬼太郎空港). In this article, we will introduce the charms and attractiveness of these two airports, where you can enjoy the airports themselves as tourist destinations.
Tottori Sand Dunes Conan Airport
This airport is located in Tottori City, the prefectural capital of Tottori Prefecture. The name "Tottori Sand Dunes Conan Airport" (鳥取砂丘コナン空港) comes from the birthplace of Gosho Aoyama, the author of the popular Japanese manga "Detective Conan" (a.k.a. 'Case Closed'), in Hokuei Town, Tottori Prefecture. Since then, it has been widely popular as an airport where you can meet Conan.
Welcome to the world of Detective Conan!
At the entrance, you will be greeted by Conan-kun and Ran-neechan (also known as Mouri Ran) dressed as pilot and flight attendant. Behind it is a message board written by Mr. Gosho Aoyama, saying "Welcome to Tottori Sand Dunes Conan Airport!!"
There are objects and wall art of Conan-kun and other main characters everywhere. Among them is Conan's rival Kaitou Kid. He's an elusive character, so he might be in an unexpected place. For fans of Detective Conan, a dreamy time begins.
Café Poirot, and near it is...
Cafe Poirot, which often appears in the series, is also reproduced in the airport. Here, Toru Amuro, a private detective and store clerk, welcomes you with a smile. Inside the store, there is even Kogoro Mouri taking a nap. It's a coffee shop that makes you wonder "Perhaps he's deducing? Conan-kun may be hiding somewhere?"
At the top of the stairs next to Cafe Poirot is FBI agent Shuichi Akai leaning against a brick wall. Take advantage of the moody background and we are sure your photo will look great! This is a must-see place for Toru Amuro and Shuichi Akai fans.
Send love and mail at a memorial spot on the observation deck
In front of the illustration of Shinichi Kudo and Ran Mouri on the observation deck, there is a bell in the shape of a silk hat. If you ring it together as a couple, you may swear eternal love...? Next to it is a heart-shaped Memorial Post. Mail put into this mailbox will be stamped with an original airport postmark. How about getting one as a memento of your trip?
There is also a character wall decorated with Dr. Agasa's inventions and characters. Let's fully enjoy the world of Detective Conan.
Information on restaurants and souvenir shops in the airport
Related goods and sweets are lined up at the Detective Conan goods specialty store "Conan Tanteisha". We especially recommend the airport limited products. You can also enjoy shops where you can buy Tottori's specialty products, restaurants and cafes where you can taste Tottori's ingredients.
One domestic route between Haneda Airport; international route is charter only
- Name: Tottori Sand Dunes Conan Airport (鳥取砂丘コナン空港)
- Address: 4-110-5 Koyamacho Nishi, Tottori City, Tottori Prefecture
- Access: About 20 minutes by shuttle bus from Tottori Station
Yonago Kitaro Airport
"Yonago Kitaro Airport" (米子鬼太郎空港) in Sakaiminato City, western Tottori Prefecture is named after Kitaro, the main character of "GeGeGe no Kitaro", a masterpiece by the manga artist Shigeru Mizuki from Sakaiminato City. Appearing in this manga are youkai and humans. The main character, Kitaro, is the last survivor of the ghost tribe. "Gegege no Kitaro" is a story about Kitaro, along with his fellow yokai, fighting against yokai that do evil to human society.
Yonago Kitaro Airport is a place where you can meet Kitaro and many yokai, and where you can take commemorative photos with the characters everywhere. First, on the arrival floor, Kitaro and Kitaro's father Medama-oyaji greet you on the plane. If you are luck enough, you may even meet Medama-oyaji on the belt conveyor where the checked baggage flows!
Other yokai also lurk in unexpected places. If you feel like someone is staring at you, try turning around and look for them. Youkai such as “Nurikabe” and “Neko Musume” are on the ceiling, windows, benches, and doors. But don't be afraid, all of them are yokai who are kind to humans.
Yokai in the art
At this airport, yokai also hide in works of art. Its name is "Yokaitachi no Mori" (妖怪たちの森 - Yokai's Forest), a 2.8m-high, 10.2m-wide stained glass. Living in this art are the familiar yokai that appear in "GeGeGe no Kitaro" such as "Hitotsume Kozou" and "Sunakake Babaa". Surrounded by the plants of the forest, it looks like they are letting the colorful light pass through joyfully.
This stained glass was produced using a technique that uses hand-made "antique glass" and paints it with a special paint, then bakes it and put it in place. Moreover, it was realized by a traditional technique that has continued for over 1,000 years. This is how the forest where yokai can feel comfortable was created.
The monsters on the passenger boarding bridge also transmit similarly colored light. The yellow and orange yokai that live in the windows draw patterns on the corridors as the light passes through, so please enjoy the beautiful mischief of yokai.
Information on restaurants and souvenir shops in the airport
In the airport, there is a souvenir shop where you can buy Kitaro goods and local specialties for you to enjoy shopping. There is also a duty-free shop where you can buy various products in the international boarding lounge.
If you get hungry, we recommend a restaurant where you can taste dishes made with local ingredients. It is an airport where you can enjoy yourself in various ways.
There is one domestic route between Haneda Airport, and international routes between Hong Kong International Airport, Incheon International Airport, and Shanghai Pudong International Airport.
- Name: Yonago Kitaro Airport (米子鬼太郎空港)
- Address: 1634 Sainokamicho, Sakaiminato City, Tottori Prefecture
- Access: About 25 minutes by airport shuttle bus from Yonago Station
Which one is more convenient?
Tottori can be reached by plane from Tokyo, which has many international flights, in about 1 hour 10 minutes to 1 hour 20 minutes. If you are heading to Tottori from Tokyo, it is recommended to decide whether to use Tottori Sand Dunes Conan Airport or Yonago Kitaro Airport depending on the tourist spot you are visiting.
Tottori Sand Dunes Conan Airport is the best place to visit the Tottori Sand Dunes and the dynamic and beautiful Uradome Coast. Yonago Kitaro Airport is convenient if you want to visit Mt. Daisen, one of Japan's 100 Famous Mountains, or Sakaiminato, where you can meet Kitaro and other monsters.
- Mizuki Shigeru Road in Tottori Prefecture: A Guide to enjoying the World of "GeGeGe no Kitaro"
- How to enjoy Sakaiminato in Tottori Prefecture: You can meet Kitaro while eating delicious seafood!
- How to enjoy the Kitaro Train: Take the Kitaro Train to the world of Yokai from Tottori, Japan!
- Sacred Places of “The White Rabbit of Inaba”: “Hakuto Shrine” and “Hakuto Seashore & Beach” are the Strongest Matchmaking Spot in Tottori Prefecture
- 【47 Prefecture's of Japan: Tottori edition】Prefecture where delicious coffee and sand dune enthusiasts gather
- Recommended spots around Tottori Sand Dunes: "The Sand Museum" and newly opened "TAKAHAMA CAFE"
- A must-visit for "Detective Conan" fans, "Gosho Aoyama Manga Factory" in Hokuei Town, Tottori Prefecture