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Izu and Ogasawara Islands

Izu and Ogasawara IslandsIzu and Ogasawara IslandIzu Islands are located 100-700 km south of Tokyo, and has about 100 small islands.
Main islands are within a northern range of 200 km, and peopled islands are only 9 of them.
The northernmost island is Izu-Ooshima, and it is the largest island.

Ogasawara Islands are located 900-1,100 km south of Tokyo, and has about 30 islands.
They were registered as a Natural World Heritage site in 2011.

The main islands are Chichijima and Hahajima.
After World War II, these had been placed under U.S. rule, then they returned to Japan in 1968.

These islands lines on an ocean ridge along the ocean trench. And each island is originally undersea volcano.
Izu-Ooshima and Miyake islands are the active volcanoes.
Both islands have been designated national parks.

Izu Islands are warm, and Ogasawara islands are in the subtropical zone.
But these are not resort islands with luxury beach. Rather they are the rustic islands with rich nature.
Particularly Ogasawara Islands have animals and plants with unique evolution, and is called "Galapagos of the East".

We can visit these islands by airplane or ship.
By airplane, there are a few flights a day from Haneda airport in Tokyo to Izu-Ooshima, Miyakejima and Hachijojima islands. Meanwhile there is no airport in Ogasawara islands.
By ship, we can go to most islands from Tokyo, Atami or Shimoda.
From Tokyo to Ogasawara islands, it takes 25 hours and 30 minutes.




The climate in Izu-Ooshima
Average value 1981-2010 JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC
Highest Temperature (deg C) 10.7 11.2 13.5 18.0 21.5 24.0 27.1 29.2 26.2 21.5 17.4 13.3
Lowest Temperature (deg C) 3.7 3.4 5.2 10.3 14.5 18.1 21.8 23.1 20.5 15.7 11.0 6.2
Mean monthly rainfall (mm) 131 147 258 239 260 338 247 231 353 329 195 101

The climate in Chichijima (Ogasawara Islands)
Average value 1981-2010 JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC
Highest Temperature (deg C) 20.5 20.1 21.5 23.2 25.4 28.0 30.0 29.9 29.7 28.3 25.6 22.4
Lowest Temperature (deg C) 15.7 15.3 16.7 18.8 21.2 24.0 25.4 25.9 25.5 24.1 21.3 17.8
Mean monthly rainfall (mm) 65 58 77 118 145 135 81 113 131 132 128 110

Tourist spots in Izu and Ogasawara Islands

Izu Islands map

Izu Islands

Izu-Ooshima /1/
Hachijojima /2/


Ogasawara islands map

Ogasawara Islands

Chichijima /11/
Hahajima /12/

Scenic or Nature / Park or Garden / Resort / City, Town or Village / Quarter or Street /
Temple or Shrine / Museum or Laboratory / Market or Commercial facility / Factory /
Other Building or Construction / Historic place / Remains / World Heritage Site

Main events in Izu and Ogasawara Islands

Camellia Festival in Izu-OoshimaCamellia Festival (Last Saturday in January - Late March)

It is the main festival in Izu-Ooshima island. It is held at Motomachi district, the main town on the west coast of the island, and Ooshoma park on the northwast coast.
In this period, various camellia flowers are at their peak.
Various events such as the parade, the exhibition of camellia and the dance performance are held.
Every year, "Queen of Camellia" is selected, and she appears on some events wearing the island's traditional costume "Anko".

Local foods and products in Izu and Ogasawara Islands

Shima-zushiShima-zushi

It is the sushi served in Izu and Ogasawara Islands. Hachijojima island is the central place of it.
These area is warm, so the fish topped on vinegared rice is used after being marinated in shoyu (soy sauce) before fish goes bad.
And because "wasabi" had been unobtainable, mustard is used as the spice instead.

KusayaKusaya

It is a dried fish produced in Izu Islands.
But it emits a disgustful smell when it is grilled. (When a person grilled it in a city, he had been reported to the police that someone was burning a "dead body".)
It is made by washing fresh fish in clear water, soaking in "kusaya brine" for a day and drying in the sunshine.
The "kusaya brine" is the criminal of smell. It is the brine with fermented ingredient of fish for many decades.

Camellia oilCamellia oil

Camellia japonica is the native flower of Japan, which is distributed throughout the country except Hokkaido. Especially Izu-Ooshima island is known for the camellia.
In Japan, camellia oil has been used as hair dressing since old times.
It is made from camellia flower seeds. But because the seeds are gathered once a year, the amount of production is not so much.
In Izu Islands, half of Japan's camellia oil is produced.


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