Shimane

Lovely heart hollowed out of the red rock wall

“Heart hunting” trips in the season for love

Oki Islands

The Oki Islands are in the Sea of Japan about 60 kilometers north of Shimane Prefecture. On Nakanoshima (the town of Ama), one of the inhabited islands, the Akiya Coast is a scenic spot with a series of red rock cliffs. Most importantly, there is the eye-catching large red rock that sticks out of the ocean that is known as “Byobu-Iwa” (Folding Screen Rock). It is also called “Heart Rock” because, depending on the angle, there is a hole in the rock made through wave erosion that looks heart shaped. It is popular as a location thought to be full of mystical energy for good luck and marriage.

The vantage point to see the heart

The heart-shaped hole adds a charming point to the craggy red Byobu-Iwa. The vantage point from where you can see this is a dead-end beyond the path along the Akiya Coast. The shape of the hole changes with each step that you take, and once you reach the dead-end, the shape of a heart emerges. The scenery of the emerald green sea beyond the cut out heart is especially moving.

The secret of the red cliffs

The area around the Akiya Coast is in the vicinity of an ancient volcanic crater. About 2.8 million years ago, it is thought that the geological features were formed due to volcanic activity as the sprays of lava blew out, then came down, piled up and hardened. The red color is due to oxidation when the lava was blown out, and it seems that not only is the surface of the rock red, but the inside as well. Here you can observe terrain and geological layers that tell the history of the ancient Earth, The Akiya Coast has been designated a geo-site of the Oki Islands UNESCO Global Geopark.

The Enmusubi sweets of Izumo

In the Izumo region, which has long been known for “enmusubi” (marriage ties), the cafes are teeming with delicious sweets that have an enmusubi motif. You can be blessed with happy mouthfuls as you eat at various places.

The grazing Oki Horses

Around the “Akao Lookout”, where you can see the magnificent scenery of the Kuniga Coast, there are wide pasturelands where you can see the Oki horses unhurriedly grazing.

INFORMATION

Location/Access Toyoda, Ama-cho, Oki-gun, Shimane-ken (Akiya Coast)
About 30 minutes from Izumo Airport to Oki Airport, or about one hour from Itami Airport to Oki Airport → About 10 minutes by bus from Oki Airport to Saigo Port → About 30 minutes by high-speed boat from Saigo Port to Hishiura Port (Ama) → About 20 minutes by bus from Hishiura Port.
Inquiries Ama Tourism Association
TEL +81-8514-2-0101
http://oki-ama.org
 
Enmusubi Tourism Association (Enmusubi Sweets)
TEL +81-852-55-5630
http://www.en-musubi.net

The posted contents are current as of the day when posted, but may have changed since posting.

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