I believe teaching your kids to ride a bicycle is a very rewarding experience for any parent. Anyway, because I am a father of 3 daughters, I am always on the lookout for the most suitable and safe place to teach and monitor my kids riding their bicycles.
In Sendai, Japan I am very glad because there is a special place for children to learn and ride a bicycle. Kotsu Koen or also known as Transportation Park is definitely a great place for parents to teach their children how to ride a bicycle and educate them about traffic rules in a fun way.
At Kotsu Koen your children can experience the real situation on the traffic road at Japan by themselves. For instance, your kids can become familiar with the sign of 止まれ (to-ma-re) : “stop shortly”, 通行止め (tsu-kou-do-me) : “road closed”, 駐停車禁止 (chu-tei-sha-kin-shi) : “no parking or stopping”, 横断禁止 (ou-dan-kin-shi) : “no pedestrian crossing”, and 徐行(jo-kou) : “slow down”.
All this signs are definitely different from the traffic signs at my country. From my experience, it didn’t take more than 30 minutes for all my kids to remember and understand all of these signs well.
The most interesting part about Kotsu Koen is all the facilities provided like variety types of bicycle and outdoor playground can be used without any charge and there no limit time. There are also parking spaces provided for free. If your child is looking for more excitement, then they definitely can try the ‘cute pedal cars’. So, they can feel like they are driving their own cars! At this park, as a parent you also can teach your children the basic rules about being a pedestrian while you’re walking with them. You can practice and educate the rules about the road and traffic with them during your walk inside the Kotsu Koen. I believe your children will gain a valuable experience in their life about traffic lights, crossing the street, changing lanes when cycling and even passing through a railroad crossing. Before you go back home, in front of Kotsu Koen there is a small museum which is the first electric power station at Tohoku that you can bring your children to have a look as well.
If you plan to go to Kotsu Koen by bus, from Sendai Station take the bus stop 9, 10 or 16 and get off at the last stop. You can see Kotsu Koen at the left of your side. If you plan to go there by car, after you cross the Hirose River Bridge (from Hachiman) turn right and go straight until you see a bus terminal. You can see the Kotsu Koen on your left. Kotsu Koen is open every day from 9:00 to 16:00. So, if you are still searching for the best place to bring your kids, I personally would really recommend you to visit Kotsu Koen in Sendai with your family.