Tottori Prefecture is known as the Manga Kingdom. The authors of two popular manga series are from Tottori, with Detective Conan concentrated in the east, and Gegege no Kitaro in the west. Conan even has his own airport, train station, train, and museum.
In March 2015, Tottori Airport’s name was changed to Tottori Sand Dunes Conan Airport (ie. Conan has his own airport!). However, the airport is so small that there is only one baggage claim and one airline serving it. ANA operates five flights a day from Haneda to Tottori.
The airport was everything and everywhere Conan. Right from stepping out from the plane, pictures of Conan and his friends line the aerobridge. The baggage claim had his skateboard on display, and there was a big 3D art picture of Conan riding a camel on the floor in the museum. There is even a small library with comic books and study area. The airport was a bit smaller than expectation though, but where can you find everything Conan?
Conan Station’s official name is Yura Station. It takes around an hour from Tottori.
From Conan Station, it is a 1.4km walk to Aoyama Gosho (Conan’s author) Manga Factory. The 1.4km walk is termed Conan Street, and there are statues, stone panels, and even manholes with motifs of Conan and friends. There is a Conan bridge with bronze statues as well.
In commemoration of the 20th anniversary, an exhibition titled “Incident in Conan” is being held for about a month each in large cities in Japan, since its first in Yokohama in April 2014. I managed to visit the one in Hiroshima. We were each given a booklet with a few puzzles to solve. The clues were in the exhibition. Upon completion, we were awarded with a small commemorative item.
Following the success of 2015, Conan Cafe returns in April 2016, with more venues and a wider variety of goods. I was lucky and just managed to visit the first one on the first day of opening in Nagoya. However, it was a bit disappointing and the menu did not look great.