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The Kujuku Islands of Nagasaki

Saikai National Park

The Kujuku Islands (99 Islands), located in Sasebo City, Nagasaki Prefecture, is a part of the Sakai National Park and consists of 208 islands, both large and small. If you know some Japanese, you might note that 'kujuku' means 99 but in this case it simply refers to the 'many' islands' here.

The ria coastline of the Kujuku Islands, with their intricate and complex inlets and bays, make Sasebo the perfect scenic spot. Most of the islands are uninhabited though four, including Kuroshima and Takashima, are home to people.

The Kujuku Islands are divided into the north and south islands. In the south islands, pleasure cruises depart regularly from the Saikai Pearl Sea Resort. The ships offer great views including lovely fresh breeze from the second floor. The stunning scenery of these islands saw them selected as one of Japan's 100 Famous Views. They even appeared in Tom Cruise's Hollywood film, The Last Samurai.

Cruising is the best way to completely take in the views of the Kujuku Islands. The island known as Yokoshima, for example, appears to look like a sleeping lion. The unique characteristics of the ria coastline islands make time spent watching them extremely enjoyable.

Cruise ship guides will explain many things about the islands in an easy and understandable manner. During my cruise, I happened to noticed many overseas tourists enjoying themselves taking pictures of the stunning island and water views. Back at Saikai Pearl Sea Resort, visitors can enjoy the lovely aquarium there as well as the botanical garden.

Time spent cruising and enjoying these land attractions makes for a wonderful way to spend a day with family and friends.

Getting there

A bus from Sasebo Station can take you to the Saiaki Pearl Sea Resort in about 25 minutes while the express bus takes about 15-20 minutes. From there, cruise ships depart from the port.

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