Translated by Jasmine Nishino
8 Reasons To Visit Yoron Island, The Southernmost Point Of Kagoshima
Written by MATCHA-PR
Yoron is an island located at the southern end of Kagoshima prefecture. With beautiful beaches and unique culture, let us introduce you the charms of this tropical island.
The southernmost island of Kagoshima prefecture is Yoronjima. Only 22 km south of this island is the main island of Okinawa, and you can sense the impact of Okinawan culture here despite still being in Kagoshima. The island itself only has a population of about 6,000 people, who are considered to be very mellow and friendly thanks to living in such a tropical paradise.
In this article, we would like to introduce the main points of interest and the culture of Yoronjima.
1. Ooganeku Beach, A Must Visit Place in Yoronjima!
Ooganeku Beach is Yoronjima's largest beach and during the warmer seasons, it gets filled with swimmers. It is a spot where almost every tourist stops by when visiting Yoronjima. The area has glass-bottom boats, snorkeling and plenty of other marine activities and shops for people to enjoy. It is a perfect spot to stroll along the white sandy beaches or spend a relaxing time with a book.
Address: Kagoshima, Oshima district, Yoron, Furusato
2. Yurigahama Sandbar Appears During Low Tide
Yurigahama is a sandbar that appears only during the low tide. Located only 1.5 meters away from Ooganeku Beach, you can spot a sandbar during the low tide during the spring and summer. However, it does not appear in a specified area, so it will appear in random places depending on the day.
It is a seasonal phenomenon that takes place only from April to October. You can access the sandbar with a boat from Ooganeku Beach, but the only time you can step ashore is during the low tide as it quickly disappears. It is definitely a phantom island.
Address: Kagoshima, Oshima district, Yoron, Furusato
If you take a photo here, you will get a very dream-like image indeed.
3. Yoron Folk Village
During the industrial development era in Japan, convenient machinery arrived on the island. Houses got television, phones, refrigerators, washing machines, and the lives on the islanders changed drastically.
On the other hand, the important cultural lifestyle that the people of the island followed for ages became threatened with extinction as a result. The Yoron Folk Village was created to preserve the traditions of the islanders. Daily necessities used on the island along with old houses have been moved and restored here in order to tell future generations and visitors about what life on the island was originally like.
The houses on Yoronjima have distinctive cone shaped thatched roofs and many still keep this shape today.
Blessed with the sea, there are many rare shellfish, boats, and fishing equipment the people of Yoronjima once used in their daily lives on display here as well.
The main agricultural crop of Yoronjima is sugar cane. Until a sugar factory was made after the war, there were carts pulled by oxen where used to harvest the sugar cane, squeeze the juices from the plants, and make brown sugar.
Yoron Folk Village
Address: Kagoshima, Oshima district, Yoron, Higashi ward 693
Admission fee: adults (above middle school) 400 yen, elementary school 200 yen
Phone number: +81-0997-97-2934
Website: Yoron Folk Village (Japanese)
4. Yunnu Taikenkan
Yunnu Taikenkan is a tourism center where you can enjoy the culture and history of Yoronjima. There are a total of 27 different activities for tourists to enjoy such as fishing for tropical fish, island history, and landmark expedition. This time we joined a photo frame making experience using the seashells of Yoronjima!
You can make your very own photo frame using the sand, driftwood, and seashells from around the island.
Address: Kagoshima, Oshima district, Yoron, Ritcho 3313
Phone number: +81-0997-84-3661
Website: Yunnu Taikenkan (Japanese)
5. Akasaki Limestone Cave
Yoronjima is an island made up of a collection of coral reefs. This natural cave was made after the land gradually eroded after many years. Each drop from the stalactites creates a mystical scenery that captivates its visitors.
Inside the cave is the ”Gate to Happiness” and the ”Hall of Swords” that are wonderful spots created by Mother Nature.
Akasaki Limestone Cave
Address: Kagoshima, Oshima district, Yoron, Mugiya 678
Closed: Every Wednesday (open all summer, Golden Week, beginning and end of year.)
Phone number: +81-0997-97-2069
6. Yoron Station
Yoron Station is a fictional train station situated on an imaginary line connecting Okinawa, Yoronjima and Kagoshima.
A real train does not arrive or leave this station. There is only a station house, rails, and wheels.
Right past Yoron Station is a path to walk around from which you can see the beautiful sea.
Address: Kagoshima, Oshima district, Yoron
7. Misaki's Shaved Ice
A shop we would like for you to stop by is Misaki. This shop is known for having strange names for their shaved ice. There are shaved ices that take inspiration from actual places, such as Yurigahama or even one called Stupid Kimura.
There are plenty of weird names that will have you confused, but all of them are delicious and would definitely be a memorable treat to have under the tropical sun.
Address: Kagoshima, Oshima district, Yoron, Higashi ward, entrance of Akasaki bay
Phone number: +81-0997-97-5117
8. Yoron Kenpo
Yoron Kenpo is a ceremonial drinking ritual that is done to welcome guests. The people who gather are supposed to drink while making a statement, however, there are distinctive rules and methods that need to be followed.
It is part of the service culture where people welcome and thank you for coming. This is not recommended for those who aren't big drinkers or fans of alcohol, but is a must-try for drinkers or those who would really like to experience the local culture.
Different from Kagoshima and Okinawa, Yoronjima is a distinctive island that keeps its own traditions and culture. Why not visit this island that is lesser known to people outside of Japan?
Basic Information About Yoronjima
Address: Kagoshima, Ooshima district, Yoronjima
Access: 1 hour 10 minutes by plane from Kagoshima. 40 minutes by plane from Naha airport.
Phone number: +81-0997-97-3111
Website: Yoronjima (Japanese)
Yoronjima Tourism Map
Sponsored by Kagoshima Tourism Federation