Ieshima Island MY HOME ISLAND

Ieshima Islands

Go island hopping and enjoy the freedom of the seas!

The Ieshima Islands are composed of 44 islands in the part of the Inland Sea known as Harima Nada, in southwest Hyogo Prefecture. The islands are approximately 18 kilometers from Himeji and are governed by the city. Only four of the islands are inhabited—Ieshima, Bozejima, Tangajima, and Nishijima—and have a total population of about 6,000. The islands are part of Setonaikai National Park and have served Inland Sea travelers since ancient times as a key spot to wait for favorable winds and tides.
Poems have been written about the picturesque scenery for centuries, appearing in the ancient Japanese poetry anthology, the Man’yoshu. The name “Ieshima”, translated literally as “home island,” derives from a story of Emperor Jinmu, dating back to the 6th century BCE, who was traveling east and got caught in a storm. Taking shelter on the island, he famously remarked, “It is so quiet here it feels like a home.”
The basic mode of transportation around the islands is by boat. The calm inland sea waters make island hopping a scenic treat.
Another treat is the fresh seafood caught locally that can only be enjoyed here. With intricate coastlines, the islands are known throughout Japan for the abundance of seafood caught year round, including sea bream, octopus, and horse mackerel. In particular, everyone awaits the late autumn to winter season and the delicious blue crab (watarigani) from Ieshima and mackerel (saba) from Bozejima.
Traditionally, tourists have visited Ieshima, which has a shrine connected to the ancient poet Sugawara no Michizane (845-903), and Bozejima, with its sad story of the girl Benten. Most inns are concentrated on these two islands. Tangajima, which has changed shapes due to quarrying, is known for its beach and fishing, while visitors to Nishijima can enjoy camping and the outdoors. It takes just 30 minutes to reach the Ieshima Islands from Himeji Port. Please come for a visit!


Ieshima Ten Scenic Spots

Here are ten great view spots on the islands.

Kannonzaki Tsuki
Tenma Reiju
Maura Kokaku
Kankan Chobo
Akasaka Shimizu/Sakuradani Sekkei
Miyaura Yahaku
Boze Tera-ato
Matsushima Nouma

Sightseeing Spots


A large stone in the shape of a turtle. It is said that if you pat its head 100 times, your wish will come true.

Ieshima ShrineIeshima

The head shrine of the Ieshima Islands and Harima Nada area, it is listed in ancient government documents, indicating its importance and antiquity.

Back Street StrollIeshima

With little flat land on Ieshima, houses were built in a tangled jumble, creating many lanes and alleys. Strolling along them, you will find wells, springs, pumps, and practical items people have used since ancient times.


In mid-May, for about one month, fireflies can be seen at night in the bamboo groves near Ieshima Shrine and at 10 other locations. Males live for one week, females for just two days, giving off a wondrous flashing light.

Himeji City Ieshima B&G Marine CenterIeshima

The Himeji City Ieshima B&G Marine Center provides a chance to enjoy marine sports such as boating, windsurfing, and canoeing. The center also has a gymnasium, heated pool, a ground, tennis courts, and other facilities.

Fishing on the WaterIeshima

Ieshima Fishing Park Seayou in the Miya district of Ieshima gives visitors a chance to try fishing in any season. Fishing poles and bait are provided, so come as you are.

Bentenjima (Jingonsan)Bozejima

A tiny shrine island by Boze fishing port (Naza district). The shrine is dedicated to the god of the sea, dragon god, and Benzaiten. A festival is held here on January 4.

Fishing Boats of BozejimaBozejima

Bozejima has the most active fishing industry of all the islands, with the highest catch in Hyogo Prefecture and one of the highest in the nation. It is next in population to Ieshima Island, and most residents are involved in fishing. Everywhere you go you can see fishing boats.

Hyogo Prefectural Ieshima Nature Experience CenterNishijima

Nishijima is the largest of the Ieshima Islands. This center features a lodge and campground, and provides a chance to enjoy marine sports such as canoeing or kayaking, or swimming.

Tatenohama Beach
Aoinohama BeachTangajima

Tatenohama Beach is close to the ferry port at Tangajima. The water is clear and the beach has white sand, so many visitors come here to swim in the summer. There is also Aoinohama Beach on the eastern side of the island.

Some Things to Do on the Islands

Ride Around the Island on a Power-Assisted Bicycle! Pairs, couples, small groups, First-timers to Ieshima, those who love people, taking it easy, wandering about

A course for beginners to Ieshima packed with attractions. Keep in mind the island’s main industry is stone-quarrying and our guide will take you on a ride you will never find in any city. Experience slow-paced, relaxed island time under the blue skies and surrounded by the blue seas.

“Stroll” the Waters Around Ieshima by Canoe Outdoor types, activity lovers, families, groups of friends, canoe beginners

Strolling around Ieshima can be enjoyed both by land and by sea! An experienced instructor will be your Ieshima sea concierge. Stable, easy-to-handle canoes are provided, along with polite instruction, so even beginners can have fun. Play in the waters of Ieshima!

Back Street Charm in the Maura Area Souvenir hunters, Those with time to wait until their ferry

Maura is a district where marine trade once flourished and its unique atmosphere is closely connected to the sea. Our guide will show you around and explain the island’s origins in sea-based commerce. Shops are also concentrated in this area. Walk around and see how the people of Ieshima live.

Charter Cruise Around the 44 Ieshima Islands Those who love the view of the Inland Sea and islands School or company groups; those who want to get a full view of Ieshima

The Ieshima Islands include a total of 44 islands, including small ones. Why not enjoy a ride on a water taxi that will weave through these small islands and give you a feel for the charms of Ieshima? You are sure to discover something new in the panoramic world of islands, sea and sky.

Reach a Shrine by the Sea Surrounded by Virgin Forest Those who want to visit island spots, who want to relax and feel refreshed

Enjoy the island atmosphere of the Miya district, a fishing village that differs from the Maura district. The scene of moored fishing boats bobbing in the harbor is healing to the eye. Also walk up to Ieshima Shrine, situated in sacred old-growth forest. The harmony of the sound of waves and birds will release your heart.

Come Without Equipment! Try Fishing on the Water Those who want to try fishing for the first time, Small groups; as a change from the beach or exploring

Enjoy a fishing experience all year round. We will lend you a fishing pole and bait, so feel free to come empty-handed. You might be able to catch amberjack, sea bream, yellowtail, or other fish, depending on the season. Even if you don’t catch anything, you’ll go home with a gift of fish.

Feel Like a Fisherman on the Seto Inland Sea! Experience Seine Fishing and a Great Seafood Meal Those who want to experience real seine fishing or what it is like to be a fisherman in the Inland SeaPeople staying for two days; as a change from the beach or exploring

Trawling, or seine fishing, involves dropping a net to the sea bottom and dragging it by boat to catch fish. Follow the signals of experienced fishermen to pull up the net, feeling its weight filled with fish. Imagine what kind of fish you have caught! Back on the island, you get to enjoy a meal prepared from your catch.

Festivals and Events

Ieshima Tenjin Festival

An Ieshima Shrine festival featuring a lion dance performed on elaborately decorated portable shrine boats in the Maura and Miya districts.

July 24 and 25
Walk Ieshima with a Radio Personality

A walking event with a well-known radio personality is held on Ieshima and Bozejima in alternating years.

Ieshima Setsubun Festival

Held annually at Miya Shrine and Maura Shrine on Ieshima Island, and at Ebisu Shrine on Bozejima.

February 2 (Miyaura Shrine)
February 3 (Maura Shrine)
February 4 (Ebisu Shrine)
Ieshima Tourist Fishing Contest

Held first on Bozejima, followed by Tangajima, then Ieshima. Tour around islands also held.

1st Sunday of June
Bon Odori (Traditional Dance)

A dance in the streets held from 7:00 p.m. until late at night in the Maura and Miya districts of Ieshima Island.

August 14 – 16
Boze Dragon Boat Festival

A race is held every year at Bozejima with 20 paddlers per boat.

1st Saturday of August
Autumn Festival

Locals carry two floats on their shoulders. Held at Maura Shrine and Miya Shrine on Ieshima, and at Ebisu Shrine on Bozejima.

November 2 and 3 (Ieshima Island)
November 3 and 4 (Bozejima)
Himeji Ieshima Open Water Swim

A 3.2-kilometer open water swimming race from Tangajima to Shimizu Beach on Ieshima.

3rd or 4th Sunday of August
(1-km swim held on Saturday)

Souvenirs of the Island

Dried Shrimp

Shrimp grown in the ocean current of the Harima Nada sea is truly delicious. Every crunchy bite fills your mouth with flavor. The pride of Ieshima.

Soy Sauce to Simmer Fish

Fujidai dark soy sauce is used by over half the households on the island. It brings out the great taste of seafood.

Seasoned Nori—Specialty of the Ieshima Islands

Seaweed is carefully grown on netting in the winter months by the Ieshima and Bozejima Fishery Associations. Salty and aromatic, a reminder of the nature of Ieshima.


Gently cooked and seasoned seaweed as a specialty product of Ieshima. No additives or colorings used. Only the natural taste and aroma of nori.

Ieshima Sea Salt and Homemade Jam

Natural sea salt from Yamani Suisan is made by boiling down Ieshima seawater. It is full of minerals from the Seto waters. The jams from Shima-no-Mi Kobo are in cute jars, handmade from berries.

Ieshima Boil-in-Bag Shrimp Curry

Ieshima High School and the local fishery association teamed up to create this home-cooking-style shrimp curry. Plenty of locally caught shrimp are used in the curry—a great product from Ieshima.

Tasty Island Cuisine

A visit to the Ieshima Islands would not be complete without sampling the seafood.
Freshly caught fish and seafood are prepared in traditional ways unique to Ieshima.

Gourmet pickled mackerel sushi (sabazushi)
Special island tray lunch
Blue swimming crab (watarigani)
Special island kaiseki meal

Ieshima Islands Map

Establishment Guide

  • 【Maura Area】
  • 1. Odate Ryokan
    TEL: 079-325-0248

  • 2. Yakiniku/Robata-Demise

  • 3. Fujidai soy sauce Company
    Ieshima Office

  • 4. Mizuta Fresh Fish Shop

  • 5. Okabe Japanese Style

  • 6. Miren Tsu

  • 7. Kawasaki

  • 8. Island House Ieshima-so

  • 9. Himeji City Ieshima
    B&G Marine Center

  • 【Miya Area】
  • 10. Hyotanya

  • 11. Ii Ryokan

  • 12. Kappo Ryokan Shimizu

  • 13. Shima-no-Mi Kobo

  • 14. Ieshima Fishing Park Seayou

  • 15. Appare Suisan

  • 16. Minato Ryokan

  • 17. Karaoke House Mambo

  • 18. Fisherman’s Inn

  • 19. Fisherman’s Inn

  • 20. Umi-no-Ie Nakamura-so

  • 21. Aoi-so

  • 22. Tangajima Umi-no-Ie

Travel Helpers

Ieshima Port Fureai Plaza Rent a bicycle or electric three-wheeler here, buy souvenirs or ferry tickets, or get tourist information about the island.

Like-T3 Electric Trike A fun experience for getting around the island for couples or families. (Weight limit is 200 kg and a maximum of 4 persons.)
Note: Children under the age of 6 are not allowed to ride for safety reasons.

Rental Fee
¥2,800 for the first hour
¥1,000 for each additional hour

Rent a Bicycle Ride a power-assisted bicycle to easily get around in the hilly island interior. Enjoy the sea breezes along the coast or ride into the hills, rich in natural greenery. Take advantage of this great way of seeing the island.

Rental Fee:Power-assisted bicycles
Ieshima Tourism Association (Ieshima Island)
1hr: ¥1,000, 3hrs: ¥1,200, 5hrs: ¥1,500
Hikari Kanko (Bozejima)
All day: ¥1,500 (7:40–17:00)
Ordinary bicycles(Takafuku Liner (Ieshima Island))
All day: ¥600

Ieshima Community Bus The only public transportation on Ieshima Island, it is well used by residents to get around. The bus runs two routes—Maura and Miya routes—and has 13 stops. On weekdays, there are 16 runs daily, which is convenient for when you need to get somewhere fast.
Note: Please inquire below for bus stops and time schedule.

available from Mon. to Sat. (No Sunday/holiday operation)
¥100 per trip
Note: ¥50 for children (primary school; preschoolers free).
Adult must accompany child.


Access by Train
  • ・From JR Himeji Station North Exit, take a bus—Shinki Bus for Himeji Port (Himejiko-yuki) (takes about 30 min).
  • ・To go to Ieshima Island itself, take the Takafuku Liner or Kosoku Ieshima from Himeji Port (takes about 30 min).
  • ・To go to Tangajima, take the Boze Kisen.
  • ・To go to Bozejima, take the Boze Kisen or Hikari Kanko.
  • ・The ferry ride to Tangajima takes about 30 minutes. To Bozejima it takes about 40 minutes.
Access By Car
  • ・Exit the Himeji Bypass at Chuji IC.
  • ・If coming from the Kobe side (east), turn left. If coming from the Okayama side (west), turn right. Head south until you see Himeji Port.
  • ・You cannot take your car to the Ieshima Islands. Please park your car in the vicinity of Himeji Port.
Access by Ferries


Ieshima Diary01
Ieshima Diary02
Ieshima from the Sky