SHIMODA AND MINAMI IZU 

At the Southern tip of Izu Peninsula is the historic beach town of Shimoda which is a gateway to explore Minami Izu.

SHIMODA

AN IDYLLIC BEACH TOWN WITH A FASCINATING HISTORY

WHITE SAND BEACHES, WATER SPORTS, PERRY ROAD

Take a scenic train ride down the East Coast of Izu Peninsula and you will come to the idyllic coastal town of Shimoda.

Shimoda is perhaps most famous as the first landing spot of Commodore Perry’s “Black Ships”.

The Shimoda Treaty signed in 1854 between the US and Japan effectively ended 250 years of Japanese isolation and began the Meiji Restoration.

Today there are many remnants in the town of this period of Japanese history to provide visitors a glimpse of life in the town 170 years ago.

Perry Road is perhaps the centerpiece of the town – an instagram worthy willow tree-lined cobbled street that follows a small canal with stone bridges connecting to a number of cafes and other shops.

At the end of Perry Road you can pop into Ryosenji Temple where the Shimoda Treaty was signed.

WHITE SAND BEACHES – SURFING, SNORKELING & MORE

If you enjoy sitting on the beach or prefer to get in the water there is plenty to do in and around Shimoda.

White sand beaches such as Shirahama and Iritahama are popular in the summer with sun seekers looking to escape the city and year round for surfers when the swell is up.

The nearby Suzaki Peninsula is a popular coastal hiking spot – check the Suzaki Walking Trail – and the area also boasts a number of sea kayaking, snorkeling, scuba diving and fishing operators that provide tours.

OCEANS & BEACHES

Shizuoka has approximately 500 km of coastline - from Atami in the East to Hamamatsu in the West. As Shizuoka is on the East Coast of Japan most of the coast faces the Pacific Ocean but due to the geology of Izu Peninsula a large part of the coast is on the Suruga Bay.

ATAMI STATION

Atami Station is just 40 mins from Tokyo Station on the Tokaido Bullet Train and is a gateway to Izu Peninsula. Stay in Atami Onsen and enjoy hot springs with a view of the ocean or travel by train to Shimoda or Minami Izu white sand beaches and many ocean activities.

KAKEGAWA STATION

The Omaezaki lighthouse signifies the point where the Pacific Ocean and the deep Suruga Bay meet & depending on the wind and weather local fisherman can decide where to go for the daily catch. As a result there is always a wide variety of different fresh seafood options.

HAMAMATSU STATION

Lake Hamanako is a favourite destination for locals in the Summer and the area comes alive. This brackish lake provides plenty of attractions and experiences for all visitors - from night spearfishing to flying high in a parasail or enjoying the exciting spectacle of Japan speedboat racing there is something for everyone to enjoy.

CHECK MT FUJI TRAVEL TO FIND OCEAN & BEACH RELATED EXPERIENCES AROUND SHIZUOKA

MINAMI IZU

COASTLINE AND OCEAN WAITING TO BE EXPLORED

RUGGED COASTLINE, FISHING VILLAGES & MONKEYS

Although it is possible to get to Minami Izu in just 3.5 hours from Tokyo Minami Izu feels like a million miles away.

The Southern Coastline of Izu Peninsula provides visitors with an endless supply of adventures and activities to help you explore the area but also provides the kind of seclusion that is hard fought for in these days.

Some of the highlights of Minami Izu include Sea Kayaking around Yumigahama Beach, Irozaki Cape and snorkeling at Hirizo Beach.

Another great spot to check out is the Monkey Bay – a stretch of rocky coast that is home to more than 300 Japanese monkeys.

 It should be noted that travel in this part of Izu can be challenging especially if you do not have a car – buses are infrequent so timing is important and also there are not many restaurants, cafes or convenient stores in the area.

This, in many ways, adds to the charm of the area and is the reason many people travel to Minami Izu but visitors should plan ahead and be prepared.

HOW TO GET THERE & AROUND

The train journey to Shimoda follows the East coast of Izu and offers spectacular views of the coastline on the way down. 

If you buy a Izu Dream Pass at Ito Station (just South of Atami Station) you will have 3 days to travel down to Shimoda.

With the Izu Dream Pass you have the option to travel by bus to through Minami Izu and up the West Coast of Izu to catch the Suruga Ferry to Shizuoka Station – a great diversion trip for JR Rail pass holders traveling from Tokyo to Kyoto.

For traveling to Minami Izu picking up a rental car in Shimoda to travel around is highly recommended – this gives visitors more opportunities to get off the beaten track.

BEST TIME TO VISIT

As the Southern part of Izu is sub-tropical the winters in this area are much shorter than the rest of Japan.

Although not as famous as nearby Kawazu, Minami Izu is also famous for cherry blossoms starting to bloom in February and it is a great way to escape the coldest month of the year in many other parts of Japan.

The weather starts to warm in mid-April and although the sea is still a little cold it is a great place to be to enjoy an early Spring.

Rainy Season starts mid June at which time the weather is very changeable but it is also the time that the hydrangea are at there peak and the Shimoda hydrangea festival is worth a visit.

The Summer season from July through to late September is when this area is at its best if you like the beach and ocean – long hot days with many people out enjoying themselves.

MORE INFORMATION

Check the Explore Shizuoka Minami Izu Model Course

Minami Izu Tourism Website

Minami Izu is a great place to spend a few days – explore the amazing coastline & discover quaint little fishing villages that have existed in this area for centuries.

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