Visit Miyajima and experience a stunning Shinto shrine set on a beautiful island

The island of Itsukushima is better known as Miyajima, or Shrine Island and is a beautiful day trip from Hiroshima.

Authored by James, 21st December 2018



Itsukushima, better known as Miyajima, is an island in Japan's inland sea, just south-west of Hiroshima.

The island is famous for the Itsukushima Shinto shrine, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the main reason that many tourists visit the island each year.

The view of Miyajima and the Itsukushima Shrine from the ferry

The view of Miyajima and the Itsukushima Shrine from the ferry

How to get to Miyajima

Miyajima is close to Hiroshima, and perhaps the easiest way to get there is via public transport. You can take the Hiroshima Dentestu Number 2 (the electric tram) from the centre of Hiroshima all the way to Hiroden-Miyajimaguchi station, which is at the ferry port. The tram takes about 45-60 minutes. You can then take the short ferry across the water to the island of Miyajima. Once you're on the island you'll be able to walk everywhere.

What to do on Miyajima

Visit the Itsukushima Shinto Shrine

The Torii (Gate) at the Itsukushima Shrine. At low tide you can walk right up to it

The Torii (Gate) at the Itsukushima Shrine. At low tide you can walk right up to it

Detail of the Itsukushima Shinto shrine at Miyajima

Detail of the Itsukushima Shinto shrine at Miyajima

Shops and Restaurants on Miyajima

There are numerous shops and restaurants on Miyajima, mostly located on the main street through the town, which is one street back and parallel with the coastal path. There are loads of touristy shops here, but also lots of nice izakaya and cafes where you can get a great lunch.

On our visit to Miyajima we stopped into a lovely izakaya and had some great ten-don, tempura prawns and vegetables on a bowl of rice.

Shops and restaurants on Miyajima

Shops and restaurants on Miyajima

Hiking and the Miyajima Ropeway

The island of Miyajima has a network of paths leading up to Mount Misen, which is a fairly serious hike. However you can take the Miyajima Ropeway, a gondola which takes you to within a short walk of the top of the mountain.

Amusing sign on the way to the Miyajima Ropeway

Amusing sign on the way to the Miyajima Ropeway