Tokushima is most famous for the Awa Odori Festival, which brings hordes of tourists during the Obon holiday period in August. But the prefecture, located on the eastern corner of Shikoku, offers beautiful nature and outdoor thrills all year round. Try out white-water rafting in spring or surfing in summer. Enjoy locally brewed sake in the town of Awa Ikeda during cooler months, or trek part of the Shikoku Pilgrimage Route. Off the coast lie the Naruto whirlpools, best viewed from sightseeing cruises.
Tokushima Prefecture is served by nearby Tokushima Airport and is connected to the rest of Japan by a network of train and highway bus services. Ferries also operate from Wakayama.
If departing from Tokyo or other distant Japanese cities, the easiest way to reach Tokushima is to fly into nearby Takamatsu Airport. The JR Uzushio Limited Express train connects Takamatsu City and Tokushima City. For rail travel from Tokyo, Kyoto, Osaka or Hiroshima, take the Tokaido-Sanyo Shinkansen to Shin-Kōbe Station and transfer to a highway bus. From Matsuyama, the JR Yosan Line Limited Express runs to Tokushima Station. Ferries from Wakayama are operated by Nankai Ferry and take two hours. Driving in Tokushima is relatively stress-free compared to more developed regions. A rental car is a good way to get around, and bridges connect Shikoku with the main island of Honshu.
A local sweet potato grown in sandy soil, Naruto kintoki is famous for its vibrant red skin and sweetness. Locals use...
Tokushima grows sugar cane, and this delicate, fine-grained sugar is often used to make wagashi, traditional Japanese...
A Japanese citrus fruit that looks similar to a lime but has a tart taste like a grapefruit. While too sour to eat on...
Somen noodles are usually quite thin, but this Tokushima version is thick. The dough of wheat flour and salt water is...
Otani yaki is an iconic Shikoku island pottery. The colossal water lily gardening jars are particularly impressive, s...
Yusan bako are three-tiered boxes from Tokushima on Shikoku. Children in Tokushima once carried their lunches in them...
Cherry blossoms bloom in late-March and the white-water rafting season begins. The mild temperatures are perfect for enjoying Tokushima's great outdoors.
The beaches come alive in summer as surfers share the shores with the local sea turtles that come to lay their eggs. August brings the Awa Odori festival, a major folk dance event.
November brings spectacular fall foliage to Tokushima. The remote, forest-like Iya Valley and striking Oboke Gorge are some of the best spots to enjoy the seasonal colors.
Winter in Tokushima means glittering illuminations, locally brewed sake and relaxing in one of the prefecture's many hot spring resorts.