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The Middle & West of Izu

The middle and west of Izu are quite different from the eastern side.  For such a small place, it is amazing that the land can look so diverse.

The middle, mountainous area of Izu and the less populated west coast, are more laid back, slower paced and less touristy.

Shuzenji

Can be reached from Mishima Station and is famous for its bamboo groves and her autumn leaves at Shuzenji Temple.  This temple is perhaps the most beautiful spot on the west coast.

Amagi

Is 40 minutes from Shuzenji by bus, and has many beautiful water falls-including Joren Falls, which is 25 metres high.

Dogashima

Is 1.5 hours by bus from Shuzenji.  Do not miss the sunsets here!!! They can be spectacular, especially if you can watch it while viewing the Sanshiro Islands.

Also on the west coast, be sure to see the caves of Tensodo.

Food Recommendation:

*While in Izu, try the fresh seafood available throughout the penninsula.

My family and I stayed in a few villages that are not famous, yet had a charm all their own.  I recommend staying in some towns that are off the touris map (are not being promoted), but are still interesting all the same.  I enjoy seeing how the regular people live, and it is often difficult to do that in a tourist town.  First of all, their are crowds. Secondly, most of the people are working for the tourist industry.

In some of the small towns of Izu, I enjoyed the family atmosphere and the fact that there were no large hotels, no throngs of tourists, no 7-11s nor Kentucky Fried Chickens. The people were “real” Japanese people.  If you are coming to see Japan, then I recommend seeing a real town with real people, at least once during your travels here.

About kintaro63 (101 Articles)
Writer and teacher in Japan

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