OFF FOR A WEEKEND IN PARADISE!

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Off for a Weekend in Paradise!A mystical volcanic island Basking in the sea and stars at Miyakejima Swimming, diving, snorkeling… Play on the beach by day, and then gaze at the starlit sky by night. More charms of Miyakejima! Recommendations by the Miyakejima Tourist Association Volcano trekking and bird-watching

The Izu Islands are an ideal weekend getaway from Tokyo. Access is ever more convenient since the large passenger ship was revamped in June 2014. It’s perfect for a two-night, three-day trip. Board at Takeshiba Pier late Friday evening, spend the night on board, and wake up Saturday morning to arrive in an entirely different world. Depending on the season, the journey might offer a view of the sunrise and create the memory of a lifetime. Spend a night on an island, depart Sunday afternoon, and return to Tokyo that evening. Ready, get set, go! Relax and unwind in the nature of the islands.

Experience vast nature on a casual weekend trip Miyakejima Island is ever more accessible since private tours resumed in spring 2014 after a 14-year break. This summer, delight in marine activities like swimming, diving, and snorkeling in the beautiful waters of Miyakejima, dubbed “Miyake blue,” and relish a sky full of stars you can’t see in the bustling city.

Swimming

Miyakejima has five beaches, all distinctly lined with dark sand and pebbles. Okubohama Beach, which allows camping, and Sabigahama Beach, which permits barbecuing, are recommended for groups of both family and friends. Chotaro-ike Lake Beach forms a calm inlet ideal for families with small children (be careful at high tide). Whichever beach you choose, there is no lighting, meaning it turns pitch dark after twilight, and you can lie on the beach and gaze at a sky filled with twinkling stars.

Snorkeling and diving

Miyakejima lies in the path of the Kuroshio Current, and its tropical waters are home to a variety of creatures including the striped boarfish, the neon damselfish, and Clark’s anemonefish. Marine recreation also offers a special view of the island’s complex topography formed by lava. Of the major diving spots, two of the most popular are Togahama, for its colonies of table coral, and Kamanoshiri, where chances of meeting a sea turtle are high.

Stargazing

After a full day of playing in the water, take a break and look up at the night sky. An endless stretch of the cosmos—not seen in the bustling city—promises to wrap you in a starlit embrace. Miyakejima commands a view of during a full moon, a reflection of the moonlight creating a long path on the surface of the sea called Tsuki No Michi. The sky is lovely from anywhere on the island on a clear night, but the best spot is Cape Izu jutting out into the Pacific. The lighthouse with an unusual square column looks magnificent against the sun and even more so under the stars.

Rare diving spot: Megane Iwa (Spectacles Rock)

Megane Iwa (Spectacles Rock) is a rare diving spot open only on weekends in June and October. The highlight is three underwater arches created by volcanic eruptions and the Kuroshio Current. Since the area is off limits to people most of the time, it attracts countless schools of fish.

More charms of Miyakejima! Recommendations by the Miyakejima Tourist Association Here are some more must-sees by the staff of the Miyakejima Tourist Association.

Volcano trekking explores traces of eruption on Miyakejima. It’s a pastime unique to the volcanic island. Witness the dynamic volcanic landscape and feel the energy of the Earth!

Volcano trekking

“Miyakejima is a volcanic island formed by a history of eruptions. Details of the complex topography and spectacular landscape are evident throughout the island. We’ve designed five trekking courses that explore 25 of these ‘geo-spots,’ each marked with a signboard. For directions, stop by the Miyakejima Tourist Association office and pick up a Miyakejima Geo Map.

“The long course is 14.5 kilometers in length and takes six hours to complete. It leads up a path in the forest of Mt. Oyama, overlooks the former Shinmyo-ike Pond, which vanished in an explosion of magma and steam, and heads to the Shichito (Seven Islands) Observatory that offers a panorama from Hachijojima Island to Mt. Fuji on a fine day. Along the way, withered trees and layers of lava create a magical view that’s almost otherworldly.

“The course continues down a different woody path, the Nanto Rindo, to the Koshiki Crater created in an eruption as far ago as 1643. Today the site is furnished with benches and serves as an open-air rest area in the woods, where visitors can relax.”

Bird-watching

“Miyakejima also goes by the name Bird Island because it is home to many wild birds. A lot of them are rare—the Japanese wood pigeon, the Izu thrush, and Iijima’s leaf warbler—and listed as natural monuments or endangered species. One step into the forest promises to reward you with a shower of birdsong.

“The Akakokko (Izu Thrush) Station, with a display space and reference library, is manned by rangers of the Wild Bird Society of Japan. Rent a pair of binoculars and follow the promenade to Tairo-ike Lake on a bird-watching expedition!”

Miyakejima Tourist Association Access to Miyakejima Island

Access to Miyakejima has improved greatly thanks to the new Tachibana-maru entering service and convenient regular flights. All island residents extend a warm welcome to visitors. Come and visit us!

By ship

6 hrs 30 min. by large passenger ship departing once daily from Takeshiba Pier (8-min. walk from JR Hamamatsucho Station)

By plane

45 min. by airplane departing three times daily from Chofu Airport (20 min. by bus from Keio Line Chofu Station)

Inquiries: 04994-5-1144
URL:http://www.miyakejima.gr.jp/ (Japanese)

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