Folded umbrellas outside an abandoned cafe in a shopping mall in Japan

Mitsui Outlet Park: abandoned by covid and the state of emergency

June 6, 2021

The “State of Emergency” in Japan has seen some unusual restrictions placed on life. We’re encouraged not to travel “unless necessary”, and certainly not outside of our home prefecture. Restaurants have been told not to serve alcohol as drinking is linked to the spread of Covid. Many shopping malls and non-essential stores close at weekends.

Mitsui Outlet Park is located halfway between Kobe’s shopping heartland, Sannomiya, and the impressive Akashi Kaikyō Bridge. I’ve been there a few times, both to buy odds-and-sods, and enjoy the harbor walk and its view across the Inland Sea. It may be almost at sea level, but Osaka is still visible on a fine day.