Shinjima Island was under water about 200 years ago but now is a new tourist spot where holidaymakers can feel as if they were relaxing on a private beach!-1

Shinjima Island was under water about 200 years ago but now is a new tourist spot where holidaymakers can feel as if they were relaxing on a private beach!

Kagoshima City has the busiest downtown in southern Kyushu and is a very rare example in the world in that the urban area where about 600,000 people live is located close to an active volcano. To visit Kagoshima’s new tourism destination Shinjima Island, you first ride the ferry plying the route between the city’s downtown area and Sakurajima for 15 minutes, drive for 30 minutes to Uranomae Port from where you board another ferryboat and travel for 15 minutes.

Shinjima Island was thrown up in 1779 when Sakurajima erupted on a gigantic scale. About 250 people lived on the island in the 1950s, but it has been uninhabited since 2013 when the last resident left. Sometime later, certain sisters born on the island could not stand the further deterioration of the island and began visiting to clean it up. Eventually, more than 200 volunteers joined hands with them and restored the island over 8 years. In 2019, a married couple moved in and began living on Shinjima Island.Visitors can spend time in the kind of environment that makes the most of the island’s nature and brings excitement both to children and grownups. Right before your eyes rises Sakurajima. Isn’t it a nice idea to feel nature’s vibrant activities on the island and spend a day feeling as if you were lying on a private beach?

Please start your exploration of island with the beautiful beach. Stroll along the beach where seashells are washed ashore or sit on the sand to feel as if time were passing more slowly than in everyday life. The bountiful sea is the habitat of lots and lots of fish species, so you can certainly feel their reactions strongly even when you use simple fishing gear.

Shinjima Island is a museum of natural history provided to us courtesy of nature. Before 1779, it was located 100 meters below sea level, and this is why you will be able to see a layer of precious fossil shells on the island. Please walk around the island as if you were experiencing underwater exploration.

Go down the road for a while, and you will find a small forest made up of giant Akou Trees from which branches dangle and form a lacework. Please take a deep breath among these majestic native trees full of life force.

To wind up your sojourn, please pay a visit to the power spot of the island Gosha-jinja Shrine. It is dedicated to the gods of marriage, fertility and childbirth, traffic safety, family prosperity, and academic success. Surprisingly, eight couples among the restoration volunteers have married and had children over the last eight years. The shrine certainly has brought them good luck. We recommend buying local products in the city or on Sakurajima, bringing them to the island and picnicking at a spot that strikes you as powerful. You can have the beach nearly all to yourself and experience the idyllic moments away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Visitors can feel the warm hearts of the people who protect and take good care of the island and a world infused with a sense of wonder where they will feel real nature and enjoy it.

What makes Kagoshima City special is the physical proximity of completely different types of tourist destinations, i.e., Shinjima Island and lively tourist attractions offered in the downtown. This is one of the reasons why tourists choose Kagoshima as their destination. Visit a wide variety of establishments, such as cafés with a retro atmosphere or those run by popular bakeries where you can enjoy a cup of tasty coffee, or confectioners where you will find simple, old-fashioned sweets or confectioneries known nation-wide as Kagoshima’s specialties., and enjoy the simple beauty they have to offer. Enjoy hopping around various shops.

When night falls, why don’t you spend time at Bunka-dori Street? Please have pleasant conversations with store staff and enjoy the tasty combination of Kagoshima’s local cuisine such as miso oden hot pot or sashimi of silver-stripe round herring and local Imojochu (Sweet Potato Shochu). You can enjoy Kagoshima’s Satsuma Shochu Liquor which is becoming popular worldwide recently in places like, for example, Manhattan. Find your favorite brand from a wide variety of reasonably priced products, which is possible only in the traditional production center, Kagoshima.

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