Watch and Play Watch and Play

The Kumano Sea area is more than just the site of numerous cultural properties that make up the area’s Japanese heritage. There are plenty of other opportunities to explore, too, including World Heritage sites, scenic spots that have been registered as Japanese Geoparks, and places where you can experience whales.

Japan Heritage “Living with Whales” Area Map

*Electronic topographical map data (tiles) published by the Geospatial Information Authority of Japan have been used with the permission of the Director-General of that organization (approval number: 2016 No. 647).

Kuroshima Island・Taijima Island


  • Name:Kuroshima Island・Taijima Island
  • Location:Nishimukai, Kushimoto-cho, Higashimuro-gun MAP B3
  • Getting there:Located about 10 min. on foot down National Route 42 from JR Koza Station.

Kuroshima Island can be seen on the left, and Taijima Island on the right. The latter has a distinctive, eye-like hole. Kuroshima Island can be seen on the left, and Taijima Island on the right. The latter has a distinctive, eye-like hole.

Cape Shionomisaki Lookout


  • Name:Cape Shionomisaki Lookout
  • Location:Shiono-misaki, Kushimoto-cho, Higashimuro-gun
  • Getting there:Located about 7 minutes on foot from the Shiono-misakitodaimae bus stop. MAP A4

The Koza whaling superintendent, who was based in Koza Bay (Koza, Kushimoto-cho), kept watching for whales here.

Whale-watching Kazuyoshimaru


  • Name:Kazuyoshimaru
  • Location:Sue, Kushimoto-cho, Higashimuro-gun MAP B4
  • Phone:0735-65-0046/090-3033-8050
  • Getting there:Located about 20 min. by car from JR Kushimoto Station.
  • Hours:Trips depart at 7:00 am from late April to late September (ask about an additional trip at 12:00 pm on Sundays and holidays). *Reservations required at least two days in advance. Trips may be canceled in the event of inclement weather.
  • Cost:Adults (middle school students and older), ¥6,000; children (age 4 and older), ¥4,000

Trips depart from the Port of Sue on Kii Oshima Island (in the town of Kushimoto) for the Kumano Sea between Shiono-misaki Point and waters off Taiji. Guests encounter whales and dolphins, and sometimes killer whales. Trips last about three to four hours.

Hashigui-iwa Rock


  • Name:Hashigui-iwa Rock
  • Location:Kujinokawa, Kushimoto-cho, Higashimuro-gun MAP A3
  • Getting there:Located in the immediate vicinity of the Hashiguiiwa bus stop.

A row of enormous, strangely shaped rocks extends 850 meters out to sea.

Kushimoto Marine Park


  • Name:Kushimoto Marine Park
  • Location:1157 Arida, Kushimoto-cho, Higashimuro-gun MAP A4
  • Phone:0735-62-1122
  • Getting there:Located about 12 minutes by complimentary shuttle bus from JR Kushimoto Station.
  • Hours:9:00 am to 4:30 pm (ticket sales stop at 4:00 pm)
  • Closed:Open year-round. (Sightseeing ship departures may be canceled due to inclement weather.)
  • Cost:Ticket package to the aquarium, observation platform, and ship—adults, ¥2,600; elementary and middle school students, ¥1,400 (Separate tickets are also available.)

The aquarium reproduces the Kushimoto seascape. Enjoy watching marine life from the undersea tower and the sightseeing ship.

Turkish Museum


  • Name:Turkish Museum
  • Location:1025-26 Kashino, Kushimoto-cho, Higashimuro-gun MAP B4
  • Phone:0735-65-0628
  • Getting there:Located about 3 minutes on foot from the Kashinotodaiguchi bus stop.
  • Hours:9:00 am to 5:00 pm
  • Closed:Open year-round
  • Cost:Adults, ¥500; elementary, middle school, and high school students, ¥250

The museum features exhibits of crewmembers’ belongings. The accident claimed more than 580 lives, despite islanders’ best efforts to rescue survivors.

Kashino-zaki Lighthouse


  • Name:Kashino-zaki Lighthouse
  • Location:Kashino, Kushimoto-cho, Higashimuro-gun MAP B4
  • Getting there:Located about 8 minutes on foot from the Kashinotodaiguchi bus stop.
  • Cost:Access to the lighthouse is not restricted.

View the Kumano Sea from a walkway around the outside of Japan’s oldest Western-style lighthouse, which is made of stone.

*Information in this website is accurate as of November 30, 2016. *Prices were verified as of the time of compilation and include consumption tax. *Travel times are approximate.

Watch and Play

Seeing, studying, and enjoying whales

Shops and Restaurants

A community of famous sites


Recommended lodging in Kumano


Japan Heritage festivals and traditional
performing arts that depict whaling culture