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Regions of Japan

Hokkaido Tohoku Hokuriku
Shinetsu
Kanto Tokai Kansai Chugoku Shikoku Kyushu Okinawa Islands SAPPORO TOKYO NAGOYA OSAKA FUKUOKA FURANO KUSHIRO AOMORI SENDAI FUKUSHIMA NIKKO HAKONE SADO TAKAYAMA KANAZAWA ISE KYOTO NARA HIROSHIMA NAGASAKI KAGOSHIMA NAHA
Hokkaido
Hokkaido
  • Hokkaido
Japan's great white north offers wild, white winters and bountiful summers—a haven for dedicated foodies, nature lovers and outdoor adventure fans seeking an adrenaline rush Japan's great white north offers wild, white winters and bountiful summers—a haven for dedicated foodies, nature lovers and outdoor adventure fans seeking an adrenaline rush
Tohoku
Tohoku
  • Aomori
  • Akita
  • Iwate
  • Yamagata
  • Miyagi
  • Fukushima
Fearsome festivals, fresh powder snow and vast fruit orchards—the rugged territory of Tohoku offers a new perspective on travel in Japan. Fearsome festivals, fresh powder snow and vast fruit orchards—the rugged territory of Tohoku offers a new perspective on travel in Japan.
Hokuriku Shinetsu
Hokuriku Shinetsu
  • Niigata
  • Toyama
  • Ishikawa
  • Fukui
  • Nagano
An easily accessible slice of rural Japan offering unrivaled mountainscapes and coastlines, endless outdoor adventure and amazing ocean fare. An easily accessible slice of rural Japan offering unrivaled mountainscapes and coastlines, endless outdoor adventure and amazing ocean fare.
Kanto
Kanto
  • Tokyo
  • Kanagawa
  • Chiba
  • Saitama
  • Ibaraki
  • Tochigi
  • Gunma
Jump from the neon glow of Tokyo to Gunma's mountain retreats, Kamakura's cultural heritage and the Ogasawara Islands' exotic wildlife. Jump from the neon glow of Tokyo to Gunma's mountain retreats, Kamakura's cultural heritage and the Ogasawara Islands' exotic wildlife.
Tokai
Tokai
  • Yamanashi
  • Shizuoka
  • Gifu
  • Aichi
  • Mie
Hallmark attractions such as Mt. Fuji and Takayama coexist with major cities and famous heritage in the center of Japan. Hallmark attractions such as Mt. Fuji and Takayama coexist with major cities and famous heritage in the center of Japan.
Kansai
Kansai
  • Kyoto
  • Osaka
  • Shiga
  • Hyogo
  • Nara
  • Wakayama
The Kansai region is one of contrasts, from the glittering lights of Osaka and Kobe to the cultural treasures of Kyoto and Nara. The Kansai region is one of contrasts, from the glittering lights of Osaka and Kobe to the cultural treasures of Kyoto and Nara.
Chugoku
Chugoku
  • Tottori
  • Shimane
  • Okayama
  • Hiroshima
  • Yamaguchi
Welcome to Japan's less-explored western frontier, where the weather is warmer and the pace of life is slower. Welcome to Japan's less-explored western frontier, where the weather is warmer and the pace of life is slower.
Shikoku
Shikoku
  • Tokushima
  • Kagawa
  • Ehime
  • Kochi
Island-hopping, cycling, soul-warming spiritual strolling and red-hot dancing—the island of Shikoku gets you up and moving. Island-hopping, cycling, soul-warming spiritual strolling and red-hot dancing—the island of Shikoku gets you up and moving.
Kyushu
Kyushu
  • Fukuoka
  • Saga
  • Nagasaki
  • Oita
  • Kumamoto
  • Miyazaki
  • Kagoshima
The southern island of Kyushu is home to hot springs, rugged geography, undeveloped beaches and volcanoes ranging from sleepy to smoky. The southern island of Kyushu is home to hot springs, rugged geography, undeveloped beaches and volcanoes ranging from sleepy to smoky.
Okinawa
Okinawa
  • Okinawa
Fly to Okinawa and discover a distinct island culture born of subtropical sun, white sand, coral, mangrove jungles and the age of the Ryukyu Kings Fly to Okinawa and discover a distinct island culture born of subtropical sun, white sand, coral, mangrove jungles and the age of the Ryukyu Kings

A short ferry ride from the mainland, Miyajima is one of the most visited areas in Hiroshima Prefecture

Home to Itsukushima-jinja , which appears to float on the water when the tide is in, people flock to the island in their thousands every year. The shrine is one of the most photographed places in Japan.

The island itself was once considered so sacred that it was separated from the shrine so no one would spoil the sacred ground. This is why the entrance to the shrine, a huge red wooden gate, is also constructed offshore.

Don't Miss

  • Daishoin Temple in autumn, wreathed in red and gold leaves
  • Senjokaku, the largest structure on the island
  • Walking out to the large torii gate at low tide

How to Get There

To get to the island you need to take a ferry from Miyajimaguchi Port on the mainland.

The ferry ride only takes around 10 minutes, depending on the weather. The port itself is a short walk from Miyajimaguchi Station. You can reach Miyajimaguchi Station from Yokogawa Station in Hiroshima City in around 20 minutes on the Sanyo Line.

A small gem with plenty to see

Miyajima only has a population of around 2,000 people, plus some free-roaming deer. Itsukushima-jinja and the floating gate are listed by UNESCO as World Heritage sites. There are several other shrines and temples on the island. A ropeway takes you up Mt. Misen for stunning views over the island and the bay.

More shrines and temples

While Itsukushima-jinja is the biggest draw on the island, there are a number of other shrines and temples well worth visiting.

Daishoin Temple on Mt. Misen , the highest point on the island, is surrounded by maple trees that turn a stunning red in the fall.

Daiganji Temple is located next to Itsukushima-jinja and is dedicated to Benzaiten, goddess of music, art, and water. It is said to be one of the most important temples dedicated to the goddess in Japan.

The largest structure on the island is Senjokaku, which can be translated as "hall with 1,000 mats." The powerful warlord Toyotomi Hideyoshi was overseeing the construction but died in 1598 before its completion. Now it is a beautiful, open structure with stunning views, offering shelter from the rain and cool shade from the hot summer sun.

Gojunoto is a beautiful five-story red pagoda, originally built in 1407. The vivid red pagoda contrasts perfectly with the lush greenery and the sea beyond.

Artistic inspiration

The famous woodblock artist Hiroshige made several iconic prints of the area, capturing likenesses of Itsukushima-jinja and the gate both at the low and high tide. His contemporary Kunisada also made some stunning artwork of the island.

Miyajima drew many craftsmen during the shrine construction and ongoing repairs, and it is now famous for wood carving. Miyajima bori makes a good souvenir.

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