ISLANDS OF THE SETO INLAND SEA
Akashi-Kaikyo Bridge The Seto Inland Sea is dotted with more than 3000 volcanic and granite islands, the largest of which is Awaji-shima. To appreciate how the Seto Inland Sea evolved, look at the map and imagine sea levels 120 meters below what they are now 10,000 years ago during the Ice Age. At that time much of the water was gone and many islands were mountain tops. The entire area was made up of north-south-running mountain ranges that now are island chains.
Inland Sea Islands include Inno-shima Island, known for its fruit and flowers; Shiwaku Islands, once a hideout for pirates. At the far northeastern part of the Set Inland Sea, Tomogashima Island (near Wakayama City and Osaka in the Kitan Strait) contains unique landscapes of sea cliffs and wave-cut platforms created by the raised and sloped alternate layers of the Izumi Group. Kada Observatory affords a panoramic view of Tomogashima
Many of the island have their own unique character. Inujima is a remote island of Okayama in the Seto Inland Sea with a population of 50 people and average age of 70, now coexisting with contemporary art and architecture. Of note is the museum by Hiroshi Sambuichi that houses works by Yukinori Yanagi, and scattered across the island is the "Inujima Art House Project" with works by artists such as Kohei Nawa, Haruka Kojin, and Olafur Eliasson.
Interactive works of art can be found on three different islands: Naoshima, Teshima and Inujima, The Inujima Seirensho Art museum is a former copper factory reborn as a unique art installation, with plant-powered filtration, solar energy and repurposed factory parts emphasizing its eco-friendly credentials. Chichu Art Museum on Naoshima, designed by renowned Japanese architect Tadao Ando and housing numerous masterpieces, including works by Claude Monet and Walter De Maria.
Awaji Island (reached by the Akashi Kaikyo Bridge from Kobe) is the largest island in the Inland Sea. It is the home of the Nojima Fault Preservation Museum, a futuristic greenhouse-like glass structure that encloses a 140-meter section of the Nojima fault where the earth shifted five feet during the Kobe earth quake. Visitors can see roads, dikes, rice paddies and a house disrupted by the earthquake.
At Awaji you can spend a day strolling around the beautiful flower parks or swimming at one of the beaches found around the coast. Nojima Fault, a preserved fault of the huge earthquake in 1995, is on the north side of the island. From here, head south to Minamiawaji-shi. Onaruto Bridge Promenade is called the 'Gateway to Shikoku' and crosses over the fast swirling whirlpools to the warm island of Shikoku.
Onokoro Airando-Koen Park has miniature replicas of the Parthenon, Taj Mahal and other world famous sights. UF0 Jinja features a Torii gate surrounded by stone frogs, plaster castes of human limbs and fake gorilla skulls. Nearby is a rather depressing sex museum with a resident troop of monkeys. Awaji is also a jumping off point for trips to view the whirlpools of the Naruto Straits (see Tokushima). A museum has a 3-D movie that recalls a story of a fisherman was sucked into a whirlpool and rescued by a white seal and hands on exhibits that allows you to move video cameras on the top of the bridge’s towers. On the Awaji coast are some nice beaches and campgrounds. The islands is famous for its Japanese daffodils which usually bloom in the middle of winter.
Awaji is also known for its modern architecture. Of particular interest is Awaji Yumebutai, designed nu Tadao Ando. Inspired by the Alhambra in Granada, Spain, it includes terraced gardens, an open air theater, a circular plaza, greenhouse-plant museum, conference center, tea ceremony rooms that harmonize with the natural surrounded, and feature simple lines and sunken spaces.
Nearby is Ando’s innovative Honpukuji water temple, with a Buddhist temple sunken below a lotus pond situated on a mountain. The temple is entered by descending a staircase in the middle of the pond. The outside is constructed from reinforced concrete while the circular shrine features bright red walls and lot by natural light. Websites: Awaji Official travel site awajishima-kanko.jp ; Wikitravel Wikitravel
Awaji Island Anime Park
Nijigen No Mori(inside Awajishima Prefectural Park) is an outdoor anime adventure park known in English as Awaji Island Anime Park. Opened on Awaji Island in 2017, it focuses on some of the most iconic manga and anime characters in Japanese pop culture. Its newest attraction The "Naruto and Boruto: Naruto Next Generations" debuted in April 2019. Most of the stuff is made up of painted life-size figures. [Source: Japan Today, May 7, 2019]
Nijigen no Mori literally means “two-dimensional forest”. The park is designed for visitors to feel as if they were stepping into the fantasy world of their favorite characters. Some attractions are more geared towards families and children, but it’s fun for all ages. You can even camp overnight.
Shoichi Shirahaze wrote in the Yomiuri Shimbun: “Operated by temp agency Pasona Group Inc., it will take advantage of the island’s abundant nature and employ the latest visual media technology to create a world of fantasy, complete with an accommodation facility. The featured works are “Hi no Tori” (The Phoenix) by Osamu Tezuka and “Crayon Shinchan” by Yoshito Usui.“Crayon Shinchan” facility is an athletic park. On a 1.2-kilometer-long walking trail named Night Walk Hi no Tori visitors can enjoy a show based on Tezuka’s “Hi no Tori” that uses projection mapping to beam images and sounds across the forest. [Source: Shoichi Shirahaze, Yomiuri Shimbun, March 22, 2017
Two attractions themed on “Crayon Shinchan” are near the Showa-ike pond in the park. One is zip-line crossing across the water. Overnight accommodation is offered at 23 cottages in the so-called glamping site being built in the park, with capacity for up to 80 guests, according to Pasona.
The Akashi Kaikyo Bridge (10 kilometers west of Kobe, five minutes from JR Maiko Station) is the world's longest suspension bridge. Opened in April 1998 and connecting Kobe with Awaji-shima island, it is a 3,911 meters long, a few meters longer than the Great Belt Connection (connecting the islands of Funen and Zealand in Denmark), completed in 1999. The Akashi Kaikyo Bridge has been designed to resist powerful earthquakes and typhoons. Illuminated at night, it is a breathtaking sight referred to as the "Pearl bridge."
The world’s 10 longest suspension bridges (length and year completed as of 2007): 1) Akashi-Kaikyo Bridge, Japan (1991 meters, 6,529 feet, 1998); 2) Great Belt Bridge, Denmark (1,624 meters, 5,328 feet, 1998); 3) Runyang Bridge, China (1,490 meters, 4,888 feet, 2005); 4) Humber Bridge, Britain (1,410 meters, 4,626 feet, 1981); 5) Jiangyin Bridge, China (1,385 meters, 4,543 feet, 1999); 6) Tsing Ma Bridge, Hong Kong (1,377 meters, 4,518 feet, 1997); 7) Verrazano-Narrows Bridge, New York (1,298 meters, 4,260 feet, 1964); 8) Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco (1,280 meters, 4,200 feet, 1937); 9) Hogakustenbron, Sweden (1,210 meters, 3,970 feet, 1997); 10) Mackinac Bridge. Michigan (1,158 meters, 3,800 feet, 1957).
On the Akashi (Honshu) side of the bridge there is an observation deck, within the bridge, 46 meters above the ground, that is reached by an elevator and has a ¥500 entrance fee. Nearby there is a UF0-like observation gondola that rotates as it climbs a tower for a view of the bridge and Awaji Island. The gondola rises every 15 minutes and stays at the top about eight minutes. It costs ¥500.
The Akashi-Kaikyo Bridge spans the Akashi strait, which is criss-crossed by hundreds of vessels daily. The bridge is so high that even very large ocean-going vessels and navy ships can pass underneath it. The construction of such a bridge was long considered an impossible feat. It’s management is under the jurisdiction of Honshu-Shikoku Bridge Expressway Company. Website: Wikipedia Wikipedia
Akashi Kaikyo Suspension Bridge Tour allows visitors to reach the top of the world’s longest suspension bridge and peer down from 300 meters up! On the tour, you walsk along the maintenance path under the highway and take a lift to near the top of one of the bridge’s towers while listening to the guide tell amazing stories about the construction of the US$3.6 billion structure. The tour takes around 3 hours. Audio guides are available in English, Chinese and Korean. Location: 4-114 Higashi-Maiko-cho, Tarumi-ku, Kobe Website: jb-honshi.co.jp/english/bridgeworld/
Seto Sea Islands Near Kobe and Himeji
Karanijima Islands (Tatsuno City, Hyogo Prefecture) are three islets situated off the coast of Murotsu, an old post station established during the period of Emperor Jimmu that flourished as the largest post station during the Edo period when feudal lords traveled to reside in Edo periodically. During a spring tide, the tides go out and two islands connect by land to allow walking across the sea. [Source: Ministry of the Environment Government of Japan]
Narugashima Island (Sumoto City, Hyogo Prefecture) is comprised of Mt. Naruyama on the north side of the island and a long, continuous sandbar extending for about 3 kilometers linking Takasaki on the south, as it was previously referred to as Awaji-Hashidate. The salt marsh situated in the heart of the island is inhabited by rare flora and fauna.
Ieshima Island (20 kilometers southwest of Himeji) are located in the east of the Seto Inland Sea and also in the center of the Harima Open Sea, consisting of 40 islands of different sizes. Fishing, the shipping industry, quarrying and the ship building industry are the main industries. The main island Ieshima has a large population and a lot of houses surround the port. Even though it's an isolated island, Ieshima has a great port and enjoys easy access to the city, so it's been prospering with lively atmosphere in many fields. You can enjoy your day experiencing the island's lifestyle and various history and culture by looking at the streets running up a steep slope coming from the lively port or walking around narrow alleys or steps. Since the fishery is flourishing here, it would be also fun looking for some fresh seafood.
The island of Tanga-jima has greatly changed shape due to the quarrying. It would be very interesting to see the situation from both the environmental and industrial aspects. Also this island has facilities for fishing and summer activities. There are some minshuku on Tanga-jima and you can enjoy swimming, fresh and delicious seafood dishes there. Also, you can experience fishery (reservation required) and you can take in various experiences such as drawing a fishing net from a boat or going and see the offshore fixed net.
Accommodation: Nakamura-so Nakamura-so is a minshuku that also offers a restaurant, fishery experience, and trips on fishing boats: Getting There: There are two bus centers in front of the central exit of JR Himeji station. The one to the right is the Himeji City Bus. Take a 37 bus to Himeji Portto Himeji Port and get off at the last stop (25 min.) . Two types of high-speed boats go to the main island Ieshima: Kosoku Ieshima Kosoku Ieshima (11 boats/day, about 20 min.) to Maura Port Maura and Takafuku Liner Takafuku Liner (9 boats/day, about 20 min.) to Maura Port or Miya Port Miya. Take the Bouze Kisen Line Bouze Kisen Line to Tanga-jimaTanga-jima 8 boats. Website: h-ieshima.jp/mhi/en
Hojima (40 kilometers south-southwest of Okayama) is known for its military traditions. One traveler wrote: The Kasashima area on Honjima retains the appearance of Japan from 400 years ago. Some houses are more than 100 years old. As you walk around you’ll feel like you’ve slipped back in time. Honjima, once called ‘Shiwaku-jima,’ was home to the revered Shiwaku Navy. Able to maneuver the treacherous local waters, these highly skilled sailors were exceptional ship-handlers, who were often hired by military commanders, or the shogunate. As time passed, they evolved into expert shipbuilders, utilizing their prior knowledge and experience to craft much sought after ocean vessels. [Source: JNTO]
“To get to Honjima I took the short 35-minute ferry crossing from Marugame in Kagawa Prefecture to Tomari Port. Around the island, you’ll come across artwork and venues from the Setouchi Art Festival, some of which are related to the Shiwaku Navy. A work of particular note is a sculpture of the Kanrin-maru, the first Japanese ship to traverse the Pacific Ocean. Items brought back from the voyage are on display at Shiwaku Kinbansho.
“Arriving at Kasashima, I felt like I had been transported into a historical samurai drama. The area is designated as one of Japan’s Important Preservation Districts for Groups of Traditional Buildings, and it includes about 100 houses built by the Shiwaku Carpenters, showcasing their trademark imaginative and delicate touches. The houses date from the Edo and Meiji periods, and today at ‘Sanagi House,’ you’ll find the Kasashima Machinami Hozon Center, where you can meet and chat with the locals. “This architecture has no style or rules. The Shiwaku Carpenters were flexible and made everything in accordance with the customer’s wishes,” says the old man who also serves as my tour guide.
“If you go out to the coastland on the east side of Kasashima, you’ll see the Seto Ohashi Bridge. It has been built across the eastern Shiwaku Islands, spanning the complex ocean currents that were once navigated by Shiwaku’s sailors. The bridge itself could be classed as a work of modern art, possibly an unintentional homage to the inventive, creative people that have long inhabited the archipelago.
Getting There: : Ferries depart for the Setouchi Islands from Kagawa, Okayama and Hyogo prefectures. To Honjima: 35 minutes from Marugame Port; 30 minutes from Kojimakanko Port;
Kasaoka Islands (reached by ferry from Kasaoka Port, accessible from Fukuyama and Okayama) is chain of small, unspoilt islands with beaches, hiking, marine sports and old fishing villages. Located in the western part of Okayama, this island chain is part of Kasaoka city and is composed of a little over 30 uninhabited islands and seven inhabited ones with about 3,000 residents, with the population getting smaller and smaller. Fishing, stone carving and tourism are the main businesses. Some people work for companies and many are living on their retirement pension. Almost all the islands have beaches and the meals are pretty much based on the fresh fish. There are some islands with designated hiking paths and you can enjoy the great view from the top of the mountain.
Shiraishi-jima and Manabe-shima are the main islands of the Kasaoka Islands. Shiraishi Island is located 16 kilometers away from Honshu. There are a half dozen accommodation facilities and some campsites and sightseeing fisheries. This island is also a great spot for hiking and marine sports. As for the traditional Japanese culture, "Shiraishi odori", a traditional dance specified for the national intangible cultural asset is held in August. Since Okayama Prefecture built the International Exchange Villa on the island, about 1200 foreigners come to visit here every year. At the beach on the Northern side, you can not only swim but try kayaking and windsurfing. It is possible to arrange sailing and fishing trips.
Manabe Island has a population of 390 and it's located 32 kilometers away from Kasaoka Port. Fishing, aquaculture, sightseeing and agriculture are the main industries. This is the last stop of the ferry line from Kasaoka. You will find a traditional fishing village and even an old wooden school building. Stroll through the old fishing village on the Northern side. Near the port, there is a fish restaurant famous for its freshness. Don't go there if you don't like your food moving around. It is possible to take a motorboat cruising trip to Manabe from Tomonoura which includes a delicious fresh seafood lunch.
Accommodation: Okayama Prefecture International Villa Shiraishi is one of five international villas in Okayama prefecture. They allow foreigners (and accompanying Japanese) to stay in traditional or specially designed houses, with cooking facilities for a very reasonable price.: international-villa.or.jp/en Minshuku Harada is situated right on the beach. Ask here for kayaking or surfing. On Manabe: There is a youth-hostel on the southern side of the island, a pleasant walk over the hill: Youth Hostel Santora: jyh.or.jp ; Website: Information on Shiraishi Island by Amy Chavez, who writes for the Japan Times. She also runs a bar on the beach, offers sailing trips and help with reservations for accommodation, barbecues, fishing. moooobar.com; Map: anchorage.jp/setouchi/map Getting There: From Okayama: JR Sanyo Line in direction of Mihara, Hiroshima. Get off at Kasaoka (40 min.). From Fukuyama: JR Sanyo Line in direction of Okayama. Get off at Kasaoka (15 min.).. From there, signs to "International Villa Shiraishi" will take you to Kasaoka Port. Kasaoka-Shiraishi: 15 boats per day; Kasaoka-Manabe: 8 boats per day
Shodoshima (Shodo Island)
Shodoshima Island (30 kilometers, 1½ hours by ferry ,northeast of Takamatsu and 50 kilometers southwest of Himeji) is know for its weird rock formations, olive groves and over-population of monkeys. The Strait of Dofuchi between Shodoshima Island and Mae Island is the world's narrowest navigable strait. According to the Guinness Book of Records, it is 32 feet and 7 inches wide at the point the two islands are connected by a bridge.
Shodoshima is the second largest island in the Seto Inland Sea, It has a rias coastline (made up of long, narrow inlet formed by the partial submergence of river valleys). There are a lot of deeply indented parts of the southern coast with beautiful curves. There are small islands here and there around the island. Shodoshima has seven ports and these are connected to Kansai (Osaka, Kobe, Himeji) and Shikoku (Takamatsu). Many sea-lanes pass near Shodoshima. The island attracts a fair number of tourists. In the summer time, all the beaches are full of people.
Most of the main roads of the island are near the coastline, so you can enjoy the great view of the ocean and smell the sea wherever you are. There are a lot of olive trees scattered around. In 1908 olive trees were brought on the island for the first time. Out places in three prefectures selected to experiment with cultivating olives, the trees planted on Shodoshima were the only ones that really took root. It is said that 507 of the 519 trees planted are still thriving today.
Cycling: is good on the south coast (Minami mawari). At Kusakabe Port you can rent bicycles and enjoy riding around Naikai Bay. Most roads are flat. Interesting sights include a movie village, olive park, and Furusato mura (with "somen" and "udon" noodles, fishing, sea kayaking, swimming pool and camp sites) Kayaking: Shodoshima is an ideal base for sea-kayak. Check Out countrysidestays-japan.com
Hiking: can be done at several spots. Take a bus from Kusakabe Port to Kouuntei Kouuntei. Check out Kankakei gorge or take the ropeway to the top of the mountain and view the ships in the Seto Inland Sea, Shikoku mountain range and Naruto bridge in the distance. From Fukuda Port, you can circle the Island to the North. There are camp sites and onsen and small inns where you can spend the night. There are nice view of the sea from the Yoshida Dam Viewing Platform. Also worth visiting are the mountain paths called Henro-michi (pilgrim's path) starting from Yoshida Dam. The stones were taken from to built Osaka Castle come from Quarry Park (michinoeki zanseki kinen koen).
Map: anchorage.jp/setouchi/map_shodoshima Getting There: Ferries depart for the Setouchi Islands from Kagawa, Okayama and Hyogo prefectures. To Shodoshima: 35 minutes from Takamatsu Port; 70 minutes from Shin-Okayama Port; 100 minutes from Himeji Port. Ships and ferries to Shodoshima dock at at Fukuda Port. From Himeji: Take the bus to Himeji Port as described for Ieshima. Take the Shikoku Ferry to Fukuda Port on Shodoshima.; Shikoku Ferry Group 8 boats per day, 1320Yen, 100 min. Shikoku Ferry Website: shikokuferry.com/route ; From Osaka/Kobe: Sunflower Ferry from Osaka-Shodoshima (Sakate) (3 hours 30 minutes, only during holiday season); Lonely Planet Lonely Planet Websites: town.shodoshima.lg; Website: Photos by Richard Farmer Photos by Richard Farmer
Food on Shodoshima
Shodoshima is known for its olives and handed-down culinary traditions. One traveler wrote: “After arriving at Tonosho Port, the entrance to Shodoshima, I headed for my first destination, a 1000-year-old olive tree transplanted from Spain. The tree has a thick trunk, branches, and leaves, giving me the impression it was enjoying life in its ‘new’ home. Olive cultivation began here more than 100 years ago. It is the only place in Japan that has succeeded in growing olives since the government first tested the idea, mainly thanks to a warm mild climate, little rain, and welldrained soil. “When people enter elementary school, we are given olive seedlings to plant in our gardens,” I was told by one of the locals. Watching the trees grow is important to the islanders, who liken the trees to family members. You’ll find olive trees all over the place: by roadsides, in gardens, or on hills overlooking the ocean, and they help create a truly photogenic scenery. [Source: JNTO]
“After lunch at a restaurant called ‘Nonoka’ in the Kusakabe district, and a wayside plum ice cream, the Yamaroku soy sauce brewery in Hishio-no-sato was next on my itinerary. Soy sauce has been made on Shodoshima for over 400 years due to a climate that is perfect for culturing yeast, while the raw materials required are easily procured, since salt manufacturing, import, and export, has long been active on the island. I was given a guided tour of the brewery’s dark warehouse, by its current owner. The warehouse contains several huge wooden barrels, in which ‘moromi,’ the base mixture from which soy sauce is produced is fermented. Amazingly, some of the barrels are 150 years old and still in active use. “This is how soy sauce should really be made,” he says. However, nowadays, only 1% of all Japanese soy sauce manufacturers are using wooden barrels in the fermentation process. As the art of making ‘real’ soy sauce, a cornerstone of Japanese cooking, is seemingly being lost to modernization, it was pleasing to witness the original techniques still being utilized here at the brewery. Somen noodles, another unmissable aspect of Japanese cuisine, Shiwaku Kinbansho, on Honjima, is an ex-government office, which was once given the right to govern the island autonomously. From Kasashima, you can view the beautiful Seto Ohashi Bridge.
Shodoshima is one of the most important islands in Japan when it comes to food culture. Tenobe somen noodle making is a popular activity for tourists.Again, access to raw ingredients and a suitable climate has aided this industry, and I jumped at the chance to have a go at ‘splitting’ and tasting these incredibly fine fresh noodles at Nakabu-an. Chopsticks are used to stretch the noodles and make them thinner and thinner. The dough is very elastic and hard to break, creating a delightfully flavorsome noodle....I finished off my trip by performing Gomadaki, the Buddhist custom of burning wood sticks, at Mt. Goishizan, where you can look out over the town of Tonosho. I ventured into a small cave-like hole to say a little prayer.
Naoshima (in the Inland Sea near Okayama, Kurashiki and Takamatsu) is the home of Benesse House, a unique art collection that covers the landscape around a guesthouse designed by Tadao Ando. Many public buildings like the town hall were designed by another famous architect, Kazuhiro Ishii. Riding around the island by bicycle is the best way to discover all its attractions. It is possible to rent cycles at the port or at the Benesse Resort. There are many beaches with clear water inside the resort area. The area is also ideal for kayaking.
Naoshima is a unique combination of art resort, traditional town and industrial development. It is home to world-class modern Japanese architecture. The northern half houses a huge industrial complex, whereas the Southern half forms an art resort with museums, art projects, resort hotels and beaches. The industrial heritage began with a copper refinery, which has left the surrounding slopes without much vegetation cover as the soils were heavily polluted. Nowadays, the company includes a modern facility to process industrial waste. In the Southern part, which is partly designated as National Park, you can discover masterworks of modern Japanese architecture, but also art blending with traditional houses and with nature.
Benesse House forms the core of the resort area, a blend of modern art museum and hotel designed by the famous architect Tadao Ando. Ie (=house) Project consists of four art projects situated in the traditional center of Naoshima, the Honmura district. Chichu Art Museum is the newest addition, a museum build into the hillside to not disturb the landscape. Owned by the head of a large textbook publishing company, the collection at Benesse House includes a giant pumpkin set at the end of a dock, a cluster of carved rocks, arranged around a hot tub and a massive salad bowl set by the sea. The hotel-museum is built into the side of a hill. Each room has a wall of glass facing the sea.
A cable car ride over some fountains takes one to the annex, a radial arrangement of rooms set around a central pool. In the exhibition spaces are works by Jasper Johns, Bruce Nauman and others. Designed by Tadao Ando, the Chichu Art Museum is built completely underground so as not to spoil the island’s natural beauty. Inside the museum is a Monet Water Lilies, paintings by Walter De Maria and other works. Check out the Backside of the Moon which is displayed in a black-walled building in a dark room and takes some times for the eyes to adjust to appreciate. Open Sky by Hames Turrell is a room where visitors sit in chairs and look up at the sky through skylights in the ceiling.
Accommodation: Benesse House is a high class resort hotel complex designed by the famous architect Tadao Ando. It is one of these places were you dream of staying once in a lifetime. Accommodation is available in different buildings, called the Museum, Oval, Park and Beach, with varying prices and facilities.Oyaji no umi is a small, cheap, cosy minshuku in the middle of the traditional district of Honmura. Rooms are separated by sliding doors, so don’t expect much privacy. Map: anchorage.jp; Websites: Benesse Art Site Naoshima official site benesse-artsite.jp/en; Art Site Naoshima Galinsky ; Travel Guide Naoshima Naoshima.net
Getting There: From Okayama station, take the JR Uno-line to Uno (1 hour)..Some trains are direct, otherwise you have to take the Marine Liner train in direction of Shikoku and change at Chayamachi Chayamachi. Direct buses are more frequent: twice per hour from platform 8 at Okayama Station Bus Terminal. Take an express bus in direction of Tamano Tamano and get off at Uno Station (about 1 hour). Uno Port is right in front of the station. Take the ferry to Naoshima Miyaura Port (20 min., 13 boats per day) or Naoshima Honmura Port (5 boats per day). Naoshima can also be reached by ferry from Takamatsu (6 boats per day) On the island: loop bus for 100 Yen about once per hour. Rental cycles available at the Benesse Resort and at the harbour. Teshima is an island famous for a industrial waste scandal — an unusual holiday destination, eh. However, it tells an important story about environmental issues in the Seto Inland Sea and how residents address them, and it is still a beautiful island. Teshima is an island for those who are interested in environmental issues. It was the stage of one of the biggest industrial waste scandals, where almost 600.000 tons of waste were accumulated illegally until the early 1990s. Teshima Residents took Kagawa Prefecture to court over the waste scandal and made the prefecture take responsibility for correctly processing and clearing the waste from the island. Since 2003, the waste has been transported to nearby Naoshima and processed in one of the most modern facilities in the country. The residents group offers guided tours of the site and of the island in Japanese. Getting There: By ferry from Uno Port (see above) (40 min, 8 boats per day).. Take the boat for Shodoshima Shodoshima. Make sure not to take the boat to Naoshima.
Image Sources: 1) 5) 6) 7) 8) 10) Wikipedia 2) Okayama City 3) Reggie.net 4) Hiroshima Prefecture 9) Ehime Prefecture
Text Sources: JNTO (Japan National Tourist Organization), Japan.org, Japan News, Japan Times, Yomiuri Shimbun, Japan Ministry of the Environment, UNESCO, Japan Guide website, Lonely Planet guides, New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, National Geographic, The New Yorker, Bloomberg, Reuters, Associated Press, AFP, Compton's Encyclopedia and various books and other publications.
Updated in July 2020