Ultimate experiences and exquisite pearls in a superb setting
Toba and Shima—towns located on a peninsula that juts out towards the east beyond Ise-jingu —have several attractions that make for a worthwhile trip.
- Make new friends with the dolphins, penguins and other critters at the Toba Aquarium
- Discover Spanish culture in Japan
How to Get There
Kintetsu and JR rail lines connect Toba and Shima with the rest of Mie Prefecture and beyond. The Kintetsu Shima Line is the only rail link to the southern part of the peninsula.
The journey to Toba by train takes about one hour and 45 minutes from Nagoya, and two hours or more from Osaka and Kyoto. The Kintetsu Shima Line can transport you between Toba and Shima in about 30 minutes.
Experience history and culture in Toba
Near the coast you'll find the Hinjitsukan , a former villa for royalty and the wealthy. It has since been converted into gardens and a museum of 19th century architecture.
A place to revere the sunrise
Near the Hinjitsukan are the Meoto Iwa or ”wedded rocks." From May to July, you can see the sunrise between the two rocks.
Diverse marine life
Get acquainted with the area at the Toba Visitor Center, then head over to the Toba Aquarium to come face-to-face with with cute, entertaining and colorful marine life.
A short walk down the shore is a bridge connecting the mainland to Mikimoto Pearl Island and the Pearl Museum, where you can see how beautiful akoya shell becomes precious jewelry. You'll also find some enticing gifts to peruse in the store.
Spanish influences in Shima
On the south side of the peninsula is Ago Bay , where a maze of little strips of land stretch out into a massive cluster of little islands.
The grandest way to navigate the complex channels is on the Kashikojima España Cruise, which will take you to a local pearl factory for a tour. Mie Prefecture and Valencia, Spain, are linked by a sister city partnership.
In fact, the area is home to Shima Spain Village , a family-friendly, Spanish-themed amusement park. Here, you can enjoy rollercoasters, parades, dance performances, shows and an eclectic array of foods and alcoholic beverages.
* The information on this page may be subject to change due to COVID-19.
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