Joga-shima Island Hiking Course
At Kanagawa's scenic seashore resort
Joga-shima Island is a scenic seashore resort that is only 90 minutes distance from Tokyo or 60 minutes from Yokohama. It is a small island located on the south edge of Miura Peninsula. The island is about 1 square km in total size, and 4 km around. The south part of the island faces the Pacific Ocean and you might see Izu-Ohshima Island on a sunny, clear day. The northeast edge faces Misaki Port. It is so close that you might feel the urge to swim from the port to the island. From the west side, you are facing Chiba’s Boso Peninsula.
Joga-shima hiking course (2 hours at a slow pace)
Starting Point: There is a really beautiful hiking trail connecting the east edge to the west edge of Joga-shima Island. The starting point of the course is the Joga-shima bus stop, on the east edge of the island. Before you start to walk, please drop by a bit to take a look at the embankment in front of you. If you are lucky, you will see Mt. Fuji over the sea. You will be surprised to find it much higher than you expected. When I got there, a snow-covered Mt. Fuji was vaguely visible in the hazy, light blue sky. I said “Hello Fuji-san!” unconsciously. After that, please walk toward a small shopping street of souvenir shops and fish restaurants, beyond the parking lot. This street leads directly to the hiking course.
A rocky stretch
A bamboo grass hedge lines both sides of the trail. But you can enjoy the view at several points where the hedge has been cut away. Two-thirds of the south seashore face a wide bare rock and craggy mountains. You can go down to the rock surface and enjoy fishing, picture drawing, and playing around. Your lungs will be filled with a fresh smell of the sea. When you visit Joga-shima in January to February, white daffodil along the trail will give off a faint sweet fragrance.
This is a unique rock that has been eroded by the tides and rain for hundreds of thousands of years. This is why you will find a big rock that has a hole in the middle of it. Before the Great Kanto Earthquake of 1923, it had been under the sea and people could pass through the hole in a small boat. But in 1923, due to the earthquake, the reef suddenly elevated off the ground and now stands about 8 meters high.
The goal of the trail is Joga-shima Park in the west edge of the island. The park has two observatories and a field of daffodils. From the second observatory, you will see Pacific Ocean and a blue-sky panorama where a nice cool sea breeze blows.
After enjoying this hiking course the first time, I enjoyed it so much that I have decided to go back again and again.