Ogasawara National Park

A subtropical island of evolution and endemic species

Ogasawara National Park was registered as a World Heritage site in June 2011. The landscapes include the island landscape unique to subtropical oceanic islands, pillow lava, unique coastal landforms and one of the few submergence karst landforms in Japan. In addition, the marine life of humpback whales and dolphins, green turtles, coral reefs, and tropical fish create underwater environments. The park is also known for its advanced ecotourism, centering on the Ogasawara Ecotourism Committee.

Visiting Japan's National Parks

Ogasawara National Park, like all of Japan's national parks, has no entrance fees, no opening and closing hours, and a permit is not required to enter or stay in the park. The national parks of Japan differ from national parks worldwide in that the land within the national parks is not exclusively designated for national park use and is made up of private property as well as public and protected areas. Visitors are free to enter and leave at any time.

Park Highlights

The Ogasawara Islands are quite unlike anywhere in the world. Visitors can explore areas of distinctive geology and spot many rare species of flora and fauna—the Ogasawara Islands became home to a number of endemic species that are only found on the small islands.

DON'T MISS

  • Snorkelling in the colorful coral reefs
  • Spotting humpback whales and bottlenose dolphins
  • The views of Futami Port from the top of Mt. Asahi

Located in a mild subtropical zone, Ogasawara is home to many hermatypic corals. Snorkelers and divers can enjoy the underwater landscape created by the coral. Ogasawara is also an egg laying ground for the sea turtles, which may be encountered on sandy beaches during the breeding season.

CHIHIRO-IWA ROCK (HEART ROCK)

A giant heart-shaped rock towering approximately 200 m off the ground occupies a corner of the sea cliffs on the south shore of Chichi-jima Island. This rock is a destination for many trekking tours. In winter, visitors can try and spot humpback whales swimming in the ocean from this vantage point.

ANIJIMA ISLAND MARINE PARK

The waters off the south coast of Anijima Island are highly transparent, with schools of multicolored tropical fish swimming amongst the coral reefs; visitors can join a coastal eco-tour.

MIYANOHAMA BEACH

Miyanohama Beach is situated in the north of Chichi-jima Island. With Anijima Island positioned directly offshore, this beach is ideally located. Underwater coral reefs and a large variety of fish species appeal to snorkelers. As the rapid tidal currents further offshore are dangerous, visitors should refrain from going beyond the warning buoys.

WEATHER STATION OBSERVATORY

Situated on the west side of Chichi-jima Island, this observatory is the best location to view the sunset sinking beneath the horizon; it is crowded with people when the weather is nice. Visitors can enjoy whale watching during the high season.

About the Park 

Ogasawara National Park consists of subtropical islands located about 1,000 km south of the Japanese archipelago. These islands have never been connected to the mainland and thus uniquely evolved flora, fauna, and ecosystems can be found.

FACTS & FIGURES

  • Date of National Park Designation: October 16, 1972
  • Area: 6,629 ha (66.29 square kilometers)
  • Location: Tokyo

PARKS RULES & SAFETY 

As with any national park or conservation area, visitors to Ogasawara are required to observe the following rules for safety and to protect the area's natural biodiversity:

  • Carry in, carry out: Take all of your trash with you.
  • Do not pick wildflowers or damage plants.
  • Do not feed the wild animals.
  • Hunting is not permitted.
  • No fishing unless with a certified guide.
  • No smoking while walking.
  • Campfires are only permitted in designated areas.
  • Watch your step.
  • Beware of high surf and gusty wind. (beware of tidal changes)
  • Danger of landslides when raining.
  • Earthquakes and tsunami warning. (evacuate to a high altitude in cases of strong shaking)