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Sightseeing on Miyakejima Island

January 2 - Funaiwai (A Celebration of Fishing Boats)

Funaiwai is a festival that has been held since the early Meiji era (the mid-late 1800s) to pray to Funadama, the guardian deity of boats, for bountiful catches and the safety of the boats in the year to come. On January 2, this event is held simultaneously in all five villages and five ports in Miyakejima Island. Ship owners, captains, and other people who have a connection to the ships drink sacred sake on a fishing boat and then strew mandarin oranges and wrapped offerings of money from the boat to the people gathered at the port. It is a spectacular and joyous event in which lots of people run toward the fishing boats to catch oranges in baskets or cardboard boxes. Miso soup containing Japanese rock lobster is provided, as well as sacred sake. The normally quiet island has a very lively atmosphere on this day.
(C)Miyakejima Tourist Association

January 2 - Funaiwai (A Celebration of Fishing Boats)

The Third Sunday in July - Gozu Tenno Festival

The Gozu Tenno festival has been held since the Edo era (1603-1868) to pray for a bountiful grain harvest, big catches for fishermen, safety of the family, and a state of perfect health. This festival is held at the Oshaku Shrine in the Kamitsuki area. People chant kiyari (a workmen's chant for pulling a heavy load) while carrying mikoshi (portable shrines), drums, and branches of the sasaki tree in a parade through the Kamitsuki area. The children's mikoshi is taken first from its usual home on the shrine premises, followed by the adults’ mikoshi. The image of the bearers raising and lowering the mikoshi powerfully by hand as they walk makes this festival an impressive sight.
(C)Miyakejima Tourist Office

Gozu Tenno Festival

Every Other August - Toga Shrine Festival

The Toga Shrine Festival is held by all of Miyakejima Island once every two years in August. A mikoshi is taken from its usual home at Toga Shrine, which is located in the Ako area, and is carried to Igaya, Izu, Kamitsuki, and Tsubota over the course of six days, spending the night at a shrine in each area. On the last day, the mikoshi is returned to the Toga Shrine, bringing the most exciting festival in Miyakejima Island to a close. Many former residents and tourists visit the island to see the passing of the mikoshi.

Toga Shrine Festival

Mt. Hyotan (Kamitsuki Area)

In 1940, the northeast hillside of Mt. Oyama erupted from a point around 200 meters (656 feet) above sea level, emitting a large amount of lava, volcanic bombs, scoria, and volcanic ash. In a period of about 22 hours, Mt. Hyotan was born. The lava buried Akabakkyo Bay, which was a windbreak for fishing boats and ferries, and flowed out to sea. The red wall on the mountainside of the current prefectural road was the coast at that time. Originally, two cinder cones were created; however, the one by the sea was eroded by the waves and wind many years ago. The current coast overlooks lava, sea, and sky, in a scene that truly drives home the power of nature.
(C)Miyakejima Tourist Office

Mt. Hyotan

Tairo-ike and Akakokko Station (Tsubota Area)

Tairo-ike is a lake that was created when spring water and rain ran into the crater of a volcano created by a steam explosion more than 2,500 years ago. The lake, with a depth of 30 meters (98 feet) and a circumference of approximately 2 kilometers (1.24 miles), is the largest freshwater lake on the Izu Islands. The Miyakejima Island nature center known as Akakokko Station (Akakokko-kan) was founded in 1993 at the entrance to Lake Tairo-ike. Rangers from the Wild Bird Society of Japan are stationed there to provide information about nature, and the center even includes a bird-watching center. The name Akakokko Station comes from “akakokko,” the Japanese name of the Izu island thrush, an endemic species that has been designated as a Japanese national treasure.
(C)Miyakejima Tourist Office


Toga Beach Park and Toga Beach (Ako Area)

At Toga Beach Park, you can enjoy 360-degree panoramic views, including the view of Sanbondake (the Three Shore Rocks). You can also see the mountainside, including the impressive and mysterious scene of trees whitened by volcanic gas. Toga Beach is popular for fish watching, diving, and bird watching. In the sea, you can see the northernmost table corals in Japan. Toga Shrine, where the Grand Guardian Gods of the Izu Islands are enshrined, is also located in the Ako area, which is in the southwestern part of Miyakejima Island.

Toga Beach

Shichishima (Seven Islands) Observation Deck (Ako Area)

From the Shichishima Observation Deck, which is located halfway up Mt. Oyama, you can see 360-degree panoramic views. On a sunny and clear day, you can see the full scale of the Izu Islands, from Oshima Island in the north to Hachijojima Island in the south. The Shichishima Observation Deck is located on a hill called Mt. Ninan, which is a cinder cone created by the accumulation of lava and scoria. During an eruption in 1983, the first crater was developed in the vicinity of this observatory, and a row of craters was formed stretching all the way to the coast. In 2000, another eruption occurred, and the observatory sustained significant damage from flying volcanic ash, cinder, pyroclastic flows, and debris.
(C)Miyakejima Tourist Office

Shichishima (Seven Islands) Observatory

Volcanic Experience Trail (Ako Area)

On October 3, 1983, cracks appeared in the southwest mountainside. Lava erupted to heights of more than 100 meters (328 feet), and flew into the part of the Ako area. Fortunately, there were no human casualties. In 2007, the volcanic experience trail was completed on top of this lava flow. A walk on this trail allows visitors to understand the threat of a volcanic eruption, and also to recognize the power of nature’s regenerative capabilities that produce new shoots even in the aftermath of destruction. You may also gain an understanding of the feelings the islanders, who have lived through many such explosions, have toward their island home.
(C)Miyakejima Tourist Office

Volcanic experience trail in the Ako area

Swimming, Snorkeling, Diving, Fishing, and Playing in the Sea

Thanks to the gifts it receives from the Kuroshio Current and its unique and stunning undersea volcanic terrain, featuring columnar joints and underwater arches, Miyakejima Island is a treasure trove of fish. Under the water, you will see a variety of living creatures such as coral primroses,large migratory amberjack, great amberjack, and brightly colored tropical fish. Many anglers and divers visit in search of many varieties of fish species. Harpoon fishing* for large fish and swimming off the quiet beaches are also very popular.
* If you want to try harpoon fishing, please read the five rules of harpoon fishing on Miyakejima Island. For details, see the related links.
(C)Miyakejima Tourist Office

An underwater arch

Bird Watching and Popular Land-based Activities

Miyakejima Island is famous as a bird watching island where you can see a lot of birds, including wild birds, sea birds, and the Izu island thrush, which is designated as a natural treasure. Land-based activities such as trekking, cycling, and bouldering, are also very popular. You can try bouldering at the Miyakejima Recreation Center, which is located in the gymnasium of the former Tsubota Junior High School. Miyakejima Recreation Center has seven bouldering walls and six walls for lead climbing, which involves using a rope harness for safety. There are about 270 routes of all difficulty levels. This is the largest climbing facility in Japan.
(C)Miyakejima Tourist Association

Miyakejima Recreation Center

Agricultural Products Nurtured by Nature

Miyakejima Island’s climate is warm, and the island is home to bountiful nature, making it an ideal place to grow safe and healthy vegetables. Miyakejima Island’s produce includes ashitaba, snow peas, snap peas, red eddoes, leatherleaf fern, dracaena, lily, and other plants. Ashitaba, of the Apiaceae family, has strong regenerative abilities, and it is said that its life force is so strong that even if you pick its leaves, it will produce new shoots tomorrow. It contains abundant chalcone and has a strong antioxidant effect; it has been recognized as effective in the prevention of thrombosis, arteriosclerosis, cancer, and other disorders.

Seeding of ashitaba

Fresh Fish of Miyakejima Island

Miyakejima Island offers abundant, delicious, and fresh fish unique to the island, including Japanese rock lobster, kusaya (fish dipped in salt water and dried in the sun), bonito, red snapper, and turban shellfish. It is also home to algae in the genus Gelidiaceae. Obusa (Gelidiaceae pacificum) is a high quality algae, and it was very famous as a specialty of Miyakejima Island before the eruption of Mt. Oyama. Currently, however, only a low volume is being produced. It is hoped that production will recover in the future. The season for Japanese rock lobster begins in autumn, and these lobsters are consumed locally. Kusaya is type of dried fish invented in the Izu Islands about 400 years ago, and it has a distinctive flavor and taste, as well as a long shelf life. Kusaya is a popular choice as a souvenir or gift.
(C)Miyakejima Tourist Office

Dried Gelidiaceae

Mackerel Sandwiches: A Popular and Inexpensive Treat (Ako Area)

Although Miyakejima Island is a treasure trove of fish, mackerel have historically been less popular in local dishes. Recently, however, mackerel sandwiches have become popular as Miyakejima Island’s “B-grade cuisine”. (“B-grade cuisine” refers to delicious foods, usually particular to a given area of Japan, which are not considered high cuisine because of their inexpensive price and wide availability.) These sandwiches are made by first marinating grilled mackerel fillets in sake and soy sauce. A soft bread roll, baked by Tsukuana Bakery, is toasted, spread with margarine, and filled with mackerel, lettuce, and red bell pepper grown on the Kikuchi farm, which produces delicious organic vegetables. Finally, a special onion dressing is added to complete this local treat. Mackerel sandwiches made by the bed and breakfast Minshuku SNAPPER can be purchased from the Saba Sand Cafe on the second floor of the ferry waiting room at Sabigahama Port, on days when the ferry departs from Miyakejima Island to Tokyo.
(C)Miyakejima Tourist Association

Mackerel sandwich

Nritano: An Italian Restaurant Where You Can Enjoy Home-Grown Vegetables - (Kamitsuki Area)

Nritano is an Italian restaurant offering a variety of dishes you can enjoy with wine. Salads made with homegrown vegetables, pasta with special roasted seaweed from Miyakejima Island, squid pasta, tempura made from local bamboo, and beautifully garnished carpaccio are highly recommended. Nritano also offers a wide variety of homemade wines, sake, and other liquors. At Nritano, you can enjoy Italian cuisine featuring home-grown vegetables and seasonal ingredients. To get there, walk up Nakao Hill to the east of Oshaku Shrine. You will pass a children’s playground. Keep walking, and eventually you will find the restaurant.
(C)Miyakejima Tourist Association



このページの担当は自然環境部 緑環境課 自然公園計画担当です。

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