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Sunday, May 11, 2003

Deals on wheels

There are 60 Japan Cycling Association-sponsored Cycling Terminals throughout Japan, including 11 in Hokkaido and five in Kyushu, with the rest scattered fairly evenly throughout Honshu.

A full listing of locations is posted (in Japanese) on the JCA Web site at www.j-cycling.org/CYCLINGT/ct--area/index.html

Alternatively, send 200 yen in postage stamps to JCA, Akasaka 1-9-3, Tokyo 107 and request the "Cycling Terminal Pocket Book." Unfortunately, no information is available in English.

Cycling Terminals close to Tokyo include:

* Utsunomiya Cycling Terminal This is located within Shinrin Koen nature park. 1074-1 Fukuoka, Utsunomiya, Tochigi Pref. 321-03. Tel: (0286) 52-1381 www.city.utsunomiya.tochigi.jp/kyoiku/suposin/suposin_15_saikuru.htm tochigi.jp/kyoiku/suposin/suposin

* Oarai Cycling Terminal Shabby, but with good food and nearby ocean swimming, surfing and fishing spots. 1212-57 Onuki, Oarai, Ibaraki Pref. 311-13. Tel: (029) 267-5417 kanto.or.jp/www/CyclingTerminal/Terminal/oaraimachi.htm

* Tatebayashi Cycling Terminal This lies within a large park that has a beautiful azalea garden. 2916-4 Hanayama, Tatebayashi, Gunma Pref. 374. Tel: (0276) 75-8080, kanto.or.jp/www/CyclingTerminal/Terminal/tatebayashishi.htm

Cycling Terminals close to Osaka include:

* Haga Cycling Terminal This is a 10-minute walk from a three-tiered, 88-meter-high waterfall; onsen hot springs are nearby. 625 Hara Haga, Shiso, Hyogo Pref. 671-42. Tel: (0790) 75-2355 www.town.haga.hyogo.jp/ct

* Kawabe Cycling Terminal This one offers tennis, minigolf and barbeques, too. It is located at 2095 Wasa, Kawabe, Hidaka, Wakayama Pref. 649-14. Tel: (0738) 53-1234; or go to www.cosmo.kawabe.or.jp/cyclet/

The cost for overnight lodging and two meals ranges from 5,700 yen to 7,650 yen for adults and from 5,100 yen to 5,250 yen for children 6-12. There may be a small charge for children younger than 6. All cycling terminals have bicycles for rent; if you are tall, call ahead to see if they have something big enough.

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