I recently took a trip down to Kozushima, one of the many stunning islands around mainland Japan. Being quite far away, tucked into the Pacific Ocean, the journey took all night by ferry. Which was much longer than I had expected, at least four decks high, this floating metal machine was fully equipped for an overnight trip, with washrooms, restaurants, cup noodle vending machines and most importantly beer. We reserved seats, but we found that a lot of people didn’t. If you don’t have one you can bring your sleeping bag and sleep on deck which is what we ended up doing. You also get complimentary mats.
We arrived early in the morning, all prepared to have a weekend of sun and sand. The island itself is quite small, and has one bus run every hour so it would be preferable not to miss it. There is a hotel, but most people pitch up tents to sleep in. A couple of campsites are there on the island, we stayed at Nagahama campsite. All campsites were well facilitated and had showers, washrooms and a small area to cook and barbecue.
There is quite a lot to do on the island. You can schedule a scuba diving session, however during the weekends they usually get fully booked pretty fast so it’s better to do so in advance. Fishing is quite popular, traditional fishing spears are even available at local stores if you want to try your hand at spear fishing. Scuba diving is great or just getting a tube float and riding the waves can be very relaxing.
The beach by the port, I found, is by far the best. Right behind it there is a café with amazing food and that overlooks the beach. Many of the beaches, including the one on which our campsite was, are rocky, but this one is sandy and beautiful.
One stop away from Nagahama campsite is a little man made maze around some cliffs. I started by jumping off the smaller board and finally made my way up to the top, put my arms across my chest and kept my legs straight as I jumped into the ocean. It’s definitely an exhilarating experience, or you could just snorkel in the clear blue water.
If you haven’t seen enough scenery on the mainland, there is lots to see all over the island. Simply walking or renting out a cycle and cycling around the island is a sight in itself, with caves and rock formations aged by the constant battering of the ocean.
After a day of frolicking on the beach and bathing in the sun, all you want is some time to soak in hot water. The island onsen is just the place to do so. They have an indoor section where swimwear isn’t allowed and separate male and female rooms and an outdoor section which swimsuits are required and males and females swim together. The outdoor one has a couple of pools each with a different view. One located a little higher up than the rest is the perfect place to watch the sun set into the ocean.
ACCESS: Large passenger boat. Overnight journey of approximately 12 hours. Departs from Takeshiba Pier, Tokyo.
It is also possible to take a high speed ferry that takes approximately 3 hours 30 minutes from Takeshiba Terminal, Tokyo.
KOZUSHIMA TOURIST INFORMATION:
Telephone number : 04992-8-0321
Email address: [email protected]