Miyajima island is one of the best memories I have of Japan.

While we were in Japan – especially in Kyoto – we visited a lot of beautiful shrines and temples. In fact, that sentence is just an underwhelming understatement because I don’t know how to describe the variety and stunning beauty of what we saw. I just can’t do it.

But I can say that Miyajima island was in a league of its own.




Miyajima is not far from Hiroshima. If you have a Japan Rail pass, you can take the Sanyo line from Hiroshima to Miyajimaguchi Station. From there, you just hop on a ferry to the island. The entire trip takes about an hour.

It’s so worth it.


Miyajima is best known for its “floating” torii gate. At high tide, the gate appears to float on the water, while at low tide, you can walk beneath it.


The 50-foot torii is not buried in the sand, but stands on its own weight. miyajima

Clearly my photos just don’t do it justice, but it was an incredible spot.

The gate is the entrance to the Itsukushima Shrine, which was also built to appear as if it was floating during high tide.

miyajimaThe island itself is filled with spookily friendly deer, who walk around like friendly dogs. People pet them and feed them ice cream. It was a little weird for us, but we just went with the flow. We didn’t feed them any ice cream, though.

miyajimaWe loved Miyajima island. Our only regret was that we didn’t have more time there. We made the decision to go last-minute and hopped on a train from Hiroshima, and by the time we arrived it was already kind of late.

Next time…



  1. Thanks – a lagniappe post!

    • Points Pixie says

      Colleen – I do love New Orleans 🙂

      More on the way…slowly but surely!

      • Thanks – I meant more in the sense of a “freebie”, like the extra doughnut in the “bakers dozen”. I read the trip reports for info about the general, “big”, trips. This post about a small area few have heard of fit the mold. Thanks again for the treat. I have difficulties walking distances, so I enjoy these places vicariously through reports like yours.

  2. I loved Miyajima as well. Haven’t been back since about 2003.
    Other than Itsukushima Shrine (where the Torii gate is) My main memory is all the deer wandering around town.

  3. cool spot, would love to visit someday


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