Onomichi City in Japan was an important port town historically and its recent history has seen it save itself from being just be an unappealing industrial city compressed between the coast and mountains by leveraging this cultural wealth. In the Edo Period, the city flourished as a result of its official trading port status. Many merchants during the Edo period (1603-1868) became very wealthy controlling the local trading and shipping and many hired poets, writers, artists and other craftsmen. Many temples and shrines were also built with this wealth.
Despite heavy industrialization of most of the area during Japan's modernization the city has remained a focus of many artists. A famous trilogy of movies by a local-born and renowned director, Nobuhiko Obayashi, were made in the area. The area is famous for its cooking (ramen in particular) as well. Recent building developments near the station have help revitalize and beautify the city's core.
Onomichi is famed for its temple walk.
Apparently, fans of famed locally born director, Nobuhiko Obayashi, love to take off and walk around for an entire day visiting all the temples that were featured in his films. His admirers apparently still come and follow in his footsteps. Most people walk around the temples and buildings on Senko-ji hill which is east of JR's Onomichi Station.
Senko-ji Park will be the focus of any visit to Onomichi. The park rises up over 130 meters above the city which is high enough to see far out into the Seto Inland Sea on a clear day. The Path of Literature on the hill contains stones carved with the words of famous poets and authors. There is a cable car to the top and a lookout tower. Over 10,000 cherry trees are planted in the park so it is a popular destination for cherry blossom viewing when they bloomOnomichi's covered shopping arcade is located southwest of the park.