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Updated: October 19, 2022

Explore the moon-like landscape of this volcanic island

The largest of the Izu Islands, Oshima is located east of the Izu Peninsula, around 120 kilometers from Tokyo. A large, still-active volcano dominates the island. With a landscape that's out of this world, it's a geologist's dream and an adventure playground for hikers and outdoor lovers. Two days is enough to cover the island, but chances are once you get here you won't want to leave.


  • Trekking Mt. Mihara and its "black desert"
  • Exploring the fascinating natural rock formations
  • Seeing the camellia in bloom from January to early April

How to Get There

You can access Oshima by both boat and airplane from Tokyo.

From Tokyo by airplane: Fly from Tokyo's Chofu Airport, 25 minutes.
From Tokyo by boat: A high-speed ferry from Tokyo's Takeshiba Ferry Terminal departs daily and takes around two hours. There are also car ferries, which depart from the same port and take five to seven hours each way.

Like walking on the moon

Mt. Mihara, occupying a large central section of the island, is an imposing active volcano responsible for many of the Oshima's hot springs and its jagged landscape. If you dare to stare right into the eye of the volcano, hike up the rocky mountain face and you'll find fascinating hardened lava sediments, left from the volcano's countless eruptions. Okuyama Sabaku and Ura-Sabaku, Japan's famous “black desert,” covers the side of Mt. Mihara and are said to resemble the surface of the moon.
You can also take part in a variety of activities, including trekking, diving, and golf. Then relax at one of the island’s hot springs, Motomachi Hamanoyu or Gojinka Onsen.

Mt. Mihara
Walking on Ura-Sabaku
Horses in Mt. Mihara


Limitless natural attractions

Resembling a rocky layer cake, the Semba Exposed Cliffs that wrap around the roadside overlooking the ocean were created from volcanic sediment that has piled up over the past 15,000 years. Head to the opposite side of the island and travel north along the rugged coast, and you'll find Fudeshima Island, which looks remarkably like the tip of a calligraphy brush. At the northern end of the island, you can explore the Izu Oshima Camellia Flower Garden, where you can meet and feed a community of friendly rabbits.

Semba Exposed Cliffs
Fudeshima Island
Oshima Island


Join in the flower festivities

From January to early April, Oshima is covered in bright pink camellia flowers (tsubaki). They are a symbol of the island and used in a variety of local products. Be sure to pick up a bottle of the island's camellia oil, which makes for an excellent souvenir. You can take a leisurely walk through the 100 meter-long Camellia Tunnel, located in the Senzu district. Generally speaking, January to early February is when the camellia’s start blooming, and late February to mid-March is when the blossoms are at their best, while from late March to early April you may be able to spot them blooming together with Oshima’s cherry blossoms. Every year when the flowers are in bloom, the locals hold the Izu Oshima Tsubaki Festival. If you're visiting during this time, check the festival schedule to find out what events are being held where.

Camellia in Oshima Island


Oshima’s seasonal specialties

Find the perfect souvenir or present among Oshima's variety of local goods. For example, Camellia oil is ideal for food, skin and hair care, and milk rice crackers are made using natural ingredients from the island. The herb ashitaba, a specialty of Oshima, can be eaten as tempura or tsukudani (simmered in soy sauce and mirin), and is also used to make shochu, a kind of distilled alcoholic beverage. Kusaya is a salted, dried and fermented fish that is perfect for the culinary adventurous, while natural salt, made from the seawater which surrounds the island, may have more broad appeal.





Scenic view


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