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Updated: February 13, 2023

Dolphin diving, stargazing and untouched natural beauty, just a boat ride from Tokyo

Around two and a half hours south of Tokyo by high-speed ferry, Toshima is a volcanic, densely-forested island that boasts natural sights and outdoor adventure. With a population of approximately 300 permanent residents, the untouched island of Toshima is a quiet escape, worlds apart from the buzzing hubs of Shibuya and Shinjuku miles away in Tokyo proper. Two days is enough time to see the local sights, but if you really want to take it easy, it's worth considering staying a few extra days.


  • Climb Mt. Miyatsuka for views of Mt. Fuji on the horizon
  • Enjoy stargazing from Minami ga Yama Park
  • Swim with the local dolphins

How to Get There

You can access Toshima by boat from Tokyo's Takeshiba Pier, or helicopter from neighboring Oshima Island.

From Tokyo by boat: High-speed boats take approximately two hours and 20 minutes. Overnight ferries take around nine hours. Both depart from Takeshiba Pier.
From Tokyo by airplane: Take a 30-minute flight from Chofu Airport to Oshima Island. Toshima is a 10-minute helicopter ride from there.

Views from the island's conical peak

For the ultimate scenic adventure, hike the trail to the top of Mt. Miyatsuka. Once at the summit, head to the lookout tower located on the north side. When the weather is good, you can see many of the other islands in the Izu chain, and even Mt. Fuji off in the distance on Japan's main island Honshu. Lower down on the southern hillside of the mountain is Minami ga Yama Park. With zero light pollution and a sprawling open lawn, it's an ideal place for stargazing. On a clear night without moonlight, you might be able to see the Milky Way.

Birds-eye view of Toshima
Mt. Miyatsuka
The sea seen from Toshima


Snorkel with the inquisitive locals

The island is populated by plenty of friendly locals, not all of them human however. You can take tours out on the water to see and swim with a pod of dolphins that call the island's coastal waters home. Different packages are offered by some accommodations, as well as the Toshima-Diving & Dolphinswim-Service, located near the northern pier. The season for dolphin swimming and diving typically runs from March to November.

Swimming with dolphins


Catch the camellias in bloom

The island is also famous for camellias, which were historically used to pay land taxes instead of rice. There are about 200,000 camellia trees on the island, and Toshima’s camellia oil accounts for nearly 60% of all the camellia oil produced in Japan. Camellias bloom in winter, so the best time to see the flowers is from January to March.

Scenic view


Experiences & Activities


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