Off the Beaten Path - Ojika Island
Traveling to a remote island in Japan is such a unique and exciting experience. While there are many beautiful islands to visit, what sets Ojika apart is its kominka renovation project that helped preserve a dozen of historical buildings, turning them into accommodation, restaurants, and cafes. There is also Nozaki island: easily accessed from Ojika, this uninhabited island (with only one registered resident that works for Ojika Island Tourism) is a place of wonder with hundreds of wild deers roaming around, an ancient shrine hidden in the mountains, and a beautiful church building that carries the stories of the Hidden Christians.
To give you a rough idea of Ojika Trip we came up with a three days itinerary that includes Kominka Stay and a visit to Nozaki Island.
- Required Time：3days
- Means of Transportation：Ferry
Day1 Starting the trip to hidden gem of "Ojika island" *transportation in ojika island basically relies on your foot
90mins by ferry to Ojika island
Arriving in Ojika
Ojika Island Tourism staff will be there to greet you once you get off the ferry. You will be escorted to the tourism office located at the ferry terminal where you can get all the information about Ojika Island: where to go, what to see and what to do.
At the Ojika Island Tourism office, you can rent an electric bicycle (motorbike and car rental are also available). It’s a great way to explore the island that is small in size, with no mountains, many scenic paths, and very little traffic.
regular bicycle: 500 yen～1000 yen
electric bicycle: 1000 yen～2000 yen
Stay in one of the century-old kominka (traditional Japanese houses) soaking in the nostalgic atmosphere of times gone by while still having all the modern conveniences at your use. Needless to say, time moves slower here, perfect to savor every moment of the island’s tranquil day-to-day life. All of the kominka are unique and designed to be both homely but spacious with a modern twist. You can choose to stay in a former samurai residence that comes with its own garden, or a former fisherman’s house tucked in the narrow streets of an old fishing town. Whatever choice you make, we promise that your Japan experience will reach a whole new level once you enter through the doors of your very own kominka.
Day2 healthy bakery breakfast ＆ short trip to Nozaki island ＆ Kominka dinner experience
Koji Koji Pan Bakery
This healthy bakery doesn’t use any eggs, butter, or milk in its dough. Instead, it uses locally grown sweet potatoes! The high-quality flour is from Fukuoka, while the vegetables and fish used for the filling are all from Ojika! Perfect for breakfast and lunch, Koji Koji Pan is loved by both: locals AND guests.
25mins by local ferry to Nozaki island
Nozaki Day Trip
An otherworldly place that almost seems foreign.
No trip to Ojika is complete without a visit to Nozaki Island which is only 25 minutes away from Ojika by a local ferry. Besides the 400 or so wild deer that roam the island, you will find a red brick building of a former Nokubi Church, the 300-meter-long white sand beach, and many other stunning sceneries.
25mins by local ferry back to Ojika island
Kominka Restaurant Fujimatsu
Fujimatsu is a seafront restaurant located inside the former residence of the Fujimatsu family — whalers and sake brewers who helped build Ojika Island’s economy. The restaurant’s backyard has a beautiful walkway leading to the private boating dock. There, from across the sea, guests can see the mysterious Nozaki Island with its sacred Okino-Kojima shrine. At Fujimatsu, locally produced ingredients at the peak of their freshness are turned into exquisite dishes that can be savored in the elegant atmosphere of the building.
Day3 cozy and friendly cafe ＆ letter printing experience
Breakfast at Cafe Totona
This cozy kominka-style cafe is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. We love its interior, which is reminiscent of a traditional Japanese house, and of course, the delicious food!
Letterpress Printing Experience
Aside from its beautiful nature Ojika has a lot of fascinating historical and cultural places to explore. One of them, an ancient letterpress printing studio, now offers visitors a unique opportunity to try their hand at the ancient craft. The Yokoyama family has been running the studio, which is located inside a 200-years-old building in the center of Ojika town, for more than 100 years. The 4th generation business successor is a charming young lady, who is very passionate about her craft as well as about preserving the island’s rich history and tradition. She runs a workshop where you can create your original postcards or a box for business cards with your original letterpress design.
Lunch at Konne
Enjoy Konne’s delicious food, sunny counter seats, and welcoming staff before leaving Ojika
Leaving Ojika Island
90mins by ferry to Sasebo port
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