What to see in Tokushima: a Local's Guide

What to see in Tokushima: a Local's Guide

What to See in Tokushima: A Local's Guide

Located on the eastern coast of Shikoku Island in Japan, Tokushima is a hidden gem that offers a perfect blend of natural beauty, rich cultural heritage, and vibrant festivities. As a local, I'm excited to share with you some of the top attractions and experiences that you should not miss when visiting Tokushima.

1. Awa Odori Festival

If you happen to be in Tokushima in August, witnessing the Awa Odori Festival is an absolute must. Known as one of Japan's liveliest and largest dance festivals, the streets come alive with mesmerizing music, traditional costumes, and energetic dance performances. Join the locals and dancers as they swirl through the city, creating an unforgettable atmosphere.

2. Mount Bizan

For breathtaking panoramic views of Tokushima, a visit to Mount Bizan is essential. You can reach the summit by either hiking the trails or taking the ropeway, both offering stunning views of the city and Seto Inland Sea. Once at the top, enjoy a serene moment surrounded by nature, and don't forget to capture some memorable pictures.

3. Naruto Whirlpools

A natural wonder that attracts visitors from around the world, the Naruto Whirlpools are a fascinating phenomenon caused by strong tidal currents between the Seto Inland Sea and the Pacific Ocean. Take a boat tour to witness these powerful whirlpools up close and marvel at the raw forces of nature.

4. Tokushima Ramen

No visit to Tokushima would be complete without savoring a bowl of its famous Tokushima Ramen. This regional specialty features a rich soy sauce-based broth, curly noodles, and toppings like tender pork slices, green onions, and bamboo shoots. Head to one of the local ramen shops and indulge in this savory delight.

5. Oboke Gorge

Escape into the scenic wonders of Oboke Gorge, a picturesque area renowned for its deep canyons, emerald-green waters, and lush forests. Embark on a thrilling boat ride along the Yoshino River, taking in the dramatic rock formations and vibrant foliage. Don't forget your camera to capture the breathtaking beauty of this hidden gem of Tokushima.

6. Ryozenji Temple

One of the 88 temples on the famous Shikoku Pilgrimage, Ryozenji Temple is a significant cultural and spiritual site. Explore the serene temple grounds, where you can participate in a traditional Buddhist ceremony, cleanse your spirit, and admire the beautiful architecture and tranquil atmosphere. It's a must-visit for those seeking a moment of tranquility.

7. Naruto Bridge

Spanning across the Naruto Strait, the Naruto Bridge is not only an impressive engineering marvel but also offers stunning views of the swirling Naruto Whirlpools below. Take a leisurely stroll or rent a bicycle to cross this iconic bridge while enjoying the coastal scenery and the rhythmic movements of the whirlpools.

8. Tokushima City Museum

For a deeper understanding of the history, culture, and art of Tokushima, visit the Tokushima City Museum. Discover the region's rich heritage through various exhibits, including traditional crafts, artifacts, and contemporary art installations. The museum provides valuable insights into the local culture and its connection with the natural surroundings.

9. Awa Jurobe Yashiki

Experience the spirit of Edo-era Japan at Awa Jurobe Yashiki, a cultural theme park that replicates the lively atmosphere of a traditional Awa region village. Wander through the charming streets, engage in hands-on activities, like rice pounding and calligraphy, and witness engaging performances showcasing local traditions such as puppetry and folk dance.

10. Tokushima Prefecture Museum

Immerse yourself in the rich history, art, and the natural heritage of the Tokushima region at the Tokushima Prefecture Museum. From ancient artifacts to modern artwork, this museum offers a comprehensive display of the area's cultural significance. Expand your knowledge while appreciating the diverse exhibits that showcase the region's unique identity.