Report from Sakushima (Aichi Prefecture)

  • Report from Sakushima (Aichi Prefecture)

  • alison

    Member
    April 3, 2018 at 10:30 pm

    Hi,

    I briefly mentioned going to Sakushima (Aichi Prefecture) preciously in a thread about a neighbouring island, so here is a report on Sakushima.  I went with someone who uses a manual wheelchair.

    The island population is less than 300, but they have made themselves a tourist destination by installing 20 or so public pieces of art.  You can pick up a map and a stamp collector’s pamphlet from the ferry terminal before going to the island.  Each piece of artwork has its own stamp to collect so it is a bit of a scavenger hunt that is fun for adults and kids alike.  From what we found, wheelchair users can make it to about three quarters of the art pieces, maybe a bit more (our wheelchair has punk-less tires and we are a bit adventurous…I give a push here and there when going over gravel).

    The ferry to Sakushima from the Sakana Hiroba (fish market) in Ishiki-cho, Nishio City in Aichi is easy to board via a flat ramp. The ride takes about 20 minutes and wheelchair users sit on the covered deck.  You might want to take wind-breaker.

    There are two ferry docks on the island, east and west, and you can get off at one and then work your way around to the other for your return boat ride. It is less than an hours walk, but will probably take more at a leisurely pace while enjoying the art.  The walkway around the sea and most other paths are paved.  There are a few small inclines that might be a little tiring for manual wheelchair users, but it is relatively flat.  One particular art piece is on top of a mountain so we specifically skipped that one.

    http://sakushima.com/map.pdf

    (yellow dots on the map are art pieces)

    We discovered two wheelchair accessible toilets.  One on the beach closer to the east ferry dock and one nice new one at the bbq facilities (Kurain Garuten) in the middle of the island just off the main road.

    We ate lunch at the fish market before going to the island.  There were a few cafes on the island, but they did not seem to be accessible, although take-out is probably possible.  I recommend bringing a packed lunch.  Benten Salon, near the west ferry dock, is wheelchair accessible and a good indoor rest area with free tea.

    Most people spend half a day on the island, but be aware that there are no medical facilities, convinience stores or taxis and the last ferry off the island is just after 6pm.  I would only recommend going on a warm sunny day because there is no way to get out of the rain.  The natural scenery (ocean, flowers, roaming goats, fishing harbours) are breathtaking and picture-worthy.  You will certainly enjoy the slower pace of life.

    Other details that I should mention are that parking at the fish market on the mainland before boarding the ferry is free and the ferry terminal is also served by public bus.  The ferry itself is 820 yen each way for an adult, but if you have a Japanese disability passport (teicho) it is half price.

    Sakushima is a bit out of the way for a  foreign tourist on the typical Tokyo-Kyoto-Hiroshima route, but if you have a bit of extra time in Japan (and are comfortable traveling in an environment where English might not be spoken) and want to get off the beaten path, I recommend it.

    Here is an English website:

    https://www.japanvisitor.com/nagoya-area-guides/sakushima

  • Accessible Japan

    Moderator
    April 4, 2018 at 11:16 am

    That is fantastic!  Thank you so much for this information.

    Is the Sakana Hiroba in Ishiki-cho, Nishio City near a train station?

  • alison

    Member
    April 4, 2018 at 5:51 pm

    The closest train station is Fukuchi Station on the Meitetsu Nishio Line (about 1 hour from Nagoya Station). From there you can board a Meitetsu Tobu bus bound for the Ishiki Sakana Hiroba (fish market), which takes about 25 minutes, but there are only 4 buses each day.  Taxi from the train station is also an option.

  • Accessible Japan

    Moderator
    April 5, 2018 at 7:27 pm

    Awesome, thanks for the extra information!

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