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Yonaguni Island

Yonaguni IslandMap of Yonaguni Island Yonaguni Island ("Yonagunijima" in Japanese) is an island located about 120 km west of Ishigaki Island.
But there is Taiwan about 110 km west of this island, and it is the westernmost island in Japan.

It has a squashed hexagonal shape, and is about 12 km from east to west and about 4 km from north to south in width.
Yonaguni Island was formed by not coral reefs but rocks, so it is mountainous.
There are some beaches in the island, but the sands of them are not so white as the other islands of Yaeyama.

It is thought that there were the ancestries probably reflecting Southeast Asian in this island in ancient times.
A nation had exited in the 14th century, but it was sunjugate by Ryukyu Kingdom in 1522.
After that, here became a base place of trade between Ryukyu and Taiwan.

During the period under American control after World War II, many people came to here to do illegal trade.
There were over 12 thousand people in 1947, but the population has decreased by strong crackdown.
Now about 1,600 people live in this island.

The central village is Sonai on the northeast coast, and has several minshuku.
The ship from Ishigaki Island comes into Kubura Port near the west end of the island.
And Yonaguni Airport is located about 2 km west of Sonai.

Route bus is operated in this island, but it runs around only a part of the island.
So when you tour around this island, you should rent a car or a motorbike.

Main spots in Yonaguni Island

  • Cape Agarizaki /1/ : The cape at the eastern tip of the island.
    It is surrounded by the cliffs about 100 meters, and a lighthouse stands.
    Around the cape, an observatory is set up, and we can see Iriomote Island if it is fine.
    The grass field spreads, and Yonaguni horses and cows are pastured.
  • Gunkan-iwa rock /2/ : San'ninu-dai is a rocky coast located about 1 km southwest of Cape Agarizaki.
    Along the coast, there are the rocks like huge stairs.
    And a huge rocks in the sea looks like a warship ("Gunkan" in Japanese).
  • Tachigami-iwa rock /3/ : A rock like a tower on the sea.
    It is located within 1 km southwest of Gunkan-iwa.
    The height is about 30 meters, and the ancient islanders had worshipped this rock as a god.
  • Tindahanata rocky mountain /4/ : A rocky mountain located to the southwest of Sonai village.
    The height is about 100 meters, and there is a natural observatory near the top.
    It is said that a woman lord who had governed Yonaguni Island around the 15th century lived in this mountain.
  • Dan'nu Beach /5/ : The main beach in Yonaguni Island on the northwest coast.
    The water is very clear, and we can enjoy swimming and diving.
    There are the coral reefs along the coast, but you must never go out of the coral reefs because of the very strong current.
  • Cape Irizaki /6/ : The cape at the western tip of the island.
    This position is at 24°26’58” north latitude, 122°56’01” east longitude.
    Obviously, here is the place where we can see the Japan's latest sunset.
    (The time at the summer solstice is about 40 minutes later than Tokyo and about 2 hours 25 minutes later than Nemuro in eastern Hokkaido.)
  • Undersea Ruins /7/ : There are huge rocks undersea about 25 meters deep and about 100 meters offshore on the south coast.
    The rocks have the regular shape consisting right lines and flat surface, and the size is some hundred meters.
    They look like ancient huge construction.
    It was found in 1986 by a diver, and it is still being debated whether this rocks are the artificial ancient constructions or natural ones since that.
    The tour by glass-bottom boat is operated from Sonai.
    Also diving tours are operated.
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

How to get to here

By airplane

About 1 hour and 30 minutes from Naha Airport, about 30 minutes from Ishigaki Airport.

By ship

By ferry, about 4 hours from Ishigaki Port to Kubura Port.

Cape Agarizaki Cape Agarizaki
San'ninu-dai coast Gunkan-iwa
Photo by Ishigakijima-umibe.com
Photo by Ishigakijima-umibe.com
A road in Yonaguni Island
Photo by Neo Nostalgia
Tindahanata Onservatory of Tindahanata
Dan'nu Beach
Photo by Ishigakijima-umibe.com
Cape Irizaki
Photo by Ishigakijima-umibe.com
Monument of the westernmost place in Cape Irizaki
The Japan's latest sunset at Cape Irizaki Undersea Ruins

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