Today, we are going to the isolated island to the northwest of Saga Prefecture, “Matsushima” island. The island has a population of 64 people (according to the national census in 2010), and it is surrounded by the ocean.
You can go to Matsushita island via the ocean liner, “Shinei”, from Yobuko port in Karatsu city. You can find the “Shinei” when a little further from the fishing boats parked neatly in rows at the Yobuko ports.
The interior is beautiful, the atmosphere inside is nice, making it a perfect ship for a fantastic voyage. Furthermore, the ship captain is a person with a great sense of humor.
Looking at the lovely sea while travelling to Matsushima island
When you set sail from the port, you will pass under the “Yobuko Obashi Bridge”, it is a spectacular sight that can’t often be seen from the surface of the ground.
The ship takes a total of 20 minutes allowing you to enjoy the ocean, and the weather as you travel to Matsushima island. After that, you’ll be able to see Matsushima island.
Arriving in Matsushima!
When you arrive at the island, the first thing that will catch you eye is the church. It was said that back in the Edo period, Matsushima Island was a home to the Christians that needed a place to hide. That is why most of the population on the island is Christian, and the island has another name called the “Rosario Island”.
The beautiful nature and the bountiful fishing ground
When we arrived on the island, we were moved by the beautiful nature that was left untouched by humans.
When we went halfway up the mountain, we saw the vast blue ocean that is so beautiful we can’t describe it with words.
The main industry on Matsushima Island seems to be the fishing industry with divers seeking sea urchins, ear shells, and turtle shells; while fishers fish for squids. (Divers are people who dive under the sea to fish)
When we walked along the harbor, we met the diver, Mr. Ama, who just finished his fishing of sea urchins. It seems like all of the divers on this island are all men. (In Japan, divers are usually women.)
The people who live on the island are all friendly, and when we talk to them about fishing they offered us some sea urchins saying “want to try some?” The freshly caught sea urchins are so delicious we impulsively said “one more, please!”
The island has no accommodations, but travellers with reservation can stay at the “Ristorante MATSUSHIMA”. If you ever come to this island, you will be able to spend your day relaxing in the middle of the elegant nature.
Access to Matsushima Island
|Matsushima, Chisei-cho, Karatsu city, Saga Prefecture|
|Departing from Yobuko
Departing from Matsushima Island
|Adult one-way ticket – 460yen
Child one-way ticket – 230yen
|Shinei Ship Captain
|・By JR train… Take the JR Karatsu line to Chikusen Karatsu station, and take a taxi for another 30 minutes.
・By personal car… From the Nagasaki Taku Expressway, drive for another 60 minutes.
・By Bus… Get on the Showa Bus going to Yobuko from Oteguchi Bus Center, and get-off at Yobuko Bus station.