Miyajima is a small island near Hiroshima city that has some very interesting attractions. Tourists can enjoy some picturesque views on the island that combines both mountainous and ocean landscape. If you want to find out more about this amazing place, read this article which presents you 7 things to know about Miyajima.
1. You can see wild monkeys and deer
Mount Misen is the tallest mounta on the island. The mountain has lush vegetation and is abundant in wild animals such as monkeys and deer. The animals became used to people through the centuries and can observed up close. It is one of the few places in Japan where wild animals can be seen in their natural habitat. Be careful though – they are still wild and can have unexpected reactions, so try to keep a safe distance!
2. The island is the origin place of momiji manju
Momiji manju is the area’s most loved snack. Manju is a Japanese small sweet which made from regular flour, rice powder and buckwheat. Momiji refers to the colored autumn leaves. The sweets are not filled with leaves, but are made to resemble leaves. Fillings may vary from the traditional sweet bean paste to chocolate, cream cheese, custard or powdered tea flavored cream. Momiji manju appeared in Miyajima and was created to represent Momijidani, a famous maple leaf viewing spot.
3. It is considered one of the three scenic places of Japan
Miyajima is considered one of the 3 scenic places of Japan along with Amanohashidate and Matsushima. This is thanks to Itsukushima Shrine and its beautiful torii gate that appears to be floating on water. The Great Floating Torii is a 16-meter tall gate that looks like it’s floating over water when the tide is high. But when the tide is low, tourists can go right next to it. The gate is regarded as the boundary between the human and the spirit worlds.
4. The island houses the world’s largest rice scoop
The Traditional Crafts Center in Miyajima is a place you need to stop by. The center houses the world’s largest rice scoop, which took 2 years and 10 months to complete. The scoop is 7.7 meters in length and weights 2.5 tons. Visitors can also learn how to create wooden rice scoops by participating in one of the many workshops that are organized here. Even if rice scoops are not your thing, we guarantee it will be an interesting experience!
5. The view can be enjoyed from night cruises
Tourists can enjoy night cruises on Miyajima’s water. Itsukushima Shrine and the Great Floating Gate are illuminated when night comes, offering an astonishing image. The shrine and the gate somehow look even more appealing at night. The cruises go through the gate when the water allows it. Tours usually lasts for 30 minutes and can be organized even in rainy weather, as the boats have roofs.
6. The island is renowned for oysters
Miyajima is well known for its delicious oysters. Oyster farming is an activity that has been practiced for more than 300 years in the area. Oysters can be found at every restaurant on the island and are renowned for their juiciness, size and tender texture. You can enjoy an oyster dish at a restaurant, or can participate in the Miyajima Oyster Festival which is held yearly in February. The festival events last two days over a weekend. During the festival, oysters are prepared in different ways are sold for low prices.
7. Momijidani Park is one of the most famous autumn leaf viewing spots in Japan
Momijidani Park is an attractive garden located at the foot of Mount Misen. The park is regarded as one of the best places in Japan to see autumn colors. It features over 200 maple trees that almost look like a painting, attracting many tourists every year. A detail that makes the park even more special is that there is an evergreen forest that creates a striking contrast with the red maple trees.
Have a good trip and travel!