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Naruto Strait Whirlpools

©SETOUCHI Tourism Authority

HOME > Japan’s Local Treasures > Naruto Strait Whirlpools


Epic ocean whirlpools created by the collision of opposing currents at this Japanese tourist attraction

SETOUCHI Tourism Authority


©SETOUCHI Tourism Authority


The Onaruto Bridge connects Awaji Island in Hyogo Prefecture with Naruto City in Tokushima Prefecture, one of four prefectures on the island of Shikoku. Underneath it, swirling as if part of a giant ocean vortex, is one of Mother Nature’s mysterious gems: the Naruto whirlpools. Whirling and whipping around as if giant plugs had been pulled from the ocean floor, water appears to be draining through to the unknown depths below. This phenomenon occurs when opposing currents from the Seto Inland Sea and the Kii Channel meet in the Naruto Strait, a 1.3 km wide channel connecting the Pacific Ocean to the Seto Inland Sea. These powerful whirlpools form the point at which the large volumes of water and strong currents moving between the two oceans collide. Elusive on some days and ever-present on others, the whirlpools vary in size depending on the intensity of the tides.

If you want to experience the power of the whirlpools even more directly, the best way is to see them up close. A tide-watching boat called the Uzushio Cruise departs from Awaji Island, allowing visitors to observe the wildness of the whirlpools. Onaruto Bridge also has a promenade called the Whirlpool Path, part of which has a glass floor so that visitors can observe the whirlpools from above at a leisurely pace.

There are several other observation decks in the vicinity, including an observation deck in Naruto Park, so you can witness the awesome might of the whirlpools from various angles.


©SETOUCHI Tourism Authority

How to get there


30 minutes from Shin-Osaka Station to Sannomiya Station by train. 1 hour and 20 minutes by highway bus from Sannomiya Bus Terminal.


65 Fukuike, Tosadomariura, Naruto-cho, Naruto-shi, Tokushima-ken


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