What distinguishes Kagoshima is a world-famous active volcano, Sakurajima. It’s only four kilometers ( two miles ) away from Kagoshima city. You can get to land on Sakurajima by a ferry, running every 10-15 minutes during the daytime. Walking around the port is good enough to learn about Sakurajima and enjoy magnificent views of an active volcano and surroundings. I will show you highlights to look around for a half-day trip.
How to get Sakurajima island
Photo : Soumei Baba on FlickrAs I mentioned, the ferry takes you to Sakurajima from Kagoshima port for only 15 minutes. Let’s get on a ferry and enjoy the short, but fun-filled journey!!
Kagoshima City Aquarium
This is the Kagoshima City Aquarium, located to next to Kagoshima port, which exhibits more than 500 kinds of sea creatures. Moreover, Kagoshima bay is abundant with nutrition which allows numerous sea species to inhabit in the sea. If you are lucky, you come to see a group of dolphins jumping on the surface of the sea.
These are the noodle served by Yabukin ,a noodle shop on a ferry. Not only tourists but also commuters traveling between Sakurajima and Kagoshima city slurp hot noodles to fill their stomach. Toppings of noodles are Satsumaage , a deep-fried fish cake, chopped leak and Tenkasu, tempura flakes.
Hinoshima megumikan –Farmer’s market and Restaurant
As you can see, the exterior of this building built in the shape of Sakurajima. You can buy local products such as, fresh vegetables, a wide variety of souvenirs and some snacks to nibble. It also has a restaurant that serves delicious dishes using local specialties. This facility is located within 10-minute walk from a ferry port.
Let me show you some unique products available only in this season.
This is called Sakurajima daikon, or Sakurajima radish which weighs in average 10-20 kg (22-44 pounds). The biggest size of 31.1 kg (70 pounds) and 119cm of its circumference are registered as a world record in Guiness book. It has lots of moisture and is often cooked in a hot pot with other ingredients.
This is called Sakurajima komikan, Sakurajima mandarine which is famous for its smallness. It is almost same size as an egg, about 4-5 cm. Small mandarins are processed into many products such as candy, jam, ice creams and udon noodles which you can eat in a restaurant.
Foot Bath in Nagisa Park
Photo : Travis on FlickrNext attraction is my favorite place where we can release stress from a hectic day, with panoramic views of Kagoshima bay and Sakurajima.
Nagisa park is very popular among tourists for a foot bath which you can enjoy a hot spring in a casual way. The foot bath here is proud of its length of 100 meters, a second longest foot bath in Japan. It is an amazing experience to soak your foot in a hot spring and see the plume of smoke issuing from the top of an active volcano. Why don’t you come and try?
These attractions are within 30-minute walk from the Sakurajima ferry terminal. If you want to explore further, there is a sightseeing bus making round trips around the western part of Sakurajima. Here is the website in English : http://www.kagoshima-kankou.com/for/whatsnew/2011/11/introducing-the-sakurajima-island-view-tour-bus.html
Sakurajima Visitor Center Website (in English) : http://www.sakurajima.gr.jp/svc/english/