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Overlooking Benesse House in Naoshima and Seto Inland Sea

Naoshima (直島) is an island located in the Seto Inland Sea of Japan.


Though the island is much closer to Honshu, administratively it belongs to Shikoku's Kagawa prefecture. It has about 3500 inhabitants (on Aug 2005).

Get in

Naoshima can be reached by boat from Uno (Honshu) and from Takamatsu (Shikoku). Regular ferry services runs about 13 times a day from Uno (20 minutes, ¥280) and about 5 times from Takamatsu (one hour, ¥510),also regular high speed boat for passengers only services runs 2 times from Uno (15 minutes, ¥280) and once from Taamatsu (30 minutes, ¥1200). In addition,people from Uno usually takes ferry or boat reaches to "Miyaura port",there are 5 times services from Uno to Honmura where is nearby Art House Project(high speed boat,20 minutes, ¥280).

Note! JR train connections between Okayama and Uno are not that bad as they are shown on the Hyperdia online timetable. (You can change at Chayamachi.)

Get around

Rental bicycles are available at a small information office just on the corner left opposite the port. Less than 10 bicycles are held.(¥500/day)

Rental bicycles else are dealed at a small flower shop next the Information centre.There are about 10 bicycles.(¥500/day)(deposit ¥2000 reqiured which be repayed on return bicycles)

Local bus serves a route connecting the two ports and Benesse Art Site,also Chichu Art Museum. (¥100 flat rate)
[note]Seaside Park is out of service since September 2005 to April 2006.

Since the island is quite small, in 30-60 minutes you can reach any place on foot: the two villages, the ports and the museums.

Miyaura port to Chichu Art Museum 30minutes on southwest course
Miyaura port to Honmura,Art House Project 30minutes
Honmura to Benesse House 30minutes
Benesse House to Chichu Art Museum 20minutes


Naoshima island attained importance through the recent investigations in contemporary art and architecture.

  • Benesse House, [1]. Displays contemporary artworks in and around the museum. A superb fusion of nature, art and architecture. Displays artworks of Andy Warhol, Jackson Pollock, Richard Long and others. Museum building (1992) and Annex (1995) designed by world famous Japanese architect Tadao Ando. Adult admission ¥1000.
  • Art House Projects. Old village houses converted into art spaces showing artworks of Japanese and international artists. Combined ticket for the projects ¥500.
    • Minamidera by James Turrell and Tadao Ando.
    • Kadoya by Tatsuo Miyajima
    • Gooh Jinja (Shrine) by Hiroshi Sugimoto.
Kinza is separated from other projects, reservation required 3 days in advance and admission ¥500. On Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Japanese national holiday,within 15 minutes for a person.
  • Chichu Art Museum, [2]. Presents works of Walter de Maria, Claude Monet, James Turrell and architect Tadao Ando. Adult admission ¥2000.
  • 007 “The Man with the Red Tattoo” Museum, [3].

A small showroom has erected as a museum honoring Raymond Benson's Bond novel“The Man with the Red Tattoo”.The reason why,important part of the story takes place on Benesse House,Naoshima Island where G8 is held. The “007 Museum” aims to present Naoshima as a Bond location on a national scale, introduce visitors to the story of “The Man With the Red Tattoo” making short cartoon 007 movie,imaginary art work in the novel and exhibit material and memorabilia related to the novels and films. It is located where 1 minute on foot from Miyanoura Port.In the house opposite of the Information Office,easily find it with seven red poles 20 feet long.Entrance free.
[note]Even though called museum,never imagine as large as Benesse House or Chichu Art Museum,please.


Eating options are rather limited, although Benesse House has a restaurant (dinner around ¥4000) and a café,Chichu Art Museum has a café. There are also a few simple eateries scattered about.

Miyaura village

  • Yamamoto's Udon[eating house] a kind of Japanese noodle /10a.m.-4p.m. /close on Sunday/ capacity 20
  • Goto's bakery[shop] bread,sandwich,cake/10a.m-5p.m.?/close on Sunday/
  • Kohrozen[eating house and minshuku] /close on Sunday/capacity 10-15?
  • Iwata's confectionery[shop] cake,Japanese style sweets
  • New Olympia[eating house] fish dish,sushi,sashimi /about 5p.m.-9p.m. /close on Sunday/capacity 30?
  • Henkotsu-en[barbeque house] barbeque indoor/ about 6p.m.-9p.m./ capacity 20?
  • Shimaya[stall] chaoz,takoyaki(octpus ball)/10a.m-5p.m./close on Thursday
  • Ohgiya[eating house] udon,curry&rice /Monday-Saturday 10a.m.-4p.m./Sunday 10a.m.-5p.m./capacity 20 /inside of small information office on the corner left opposite the Miyaura port
  • Fukushi center(Naoshima General Welfare Centre)[public facility] table d'hote(set meal),udon etc./APR-SEP 10a.m.-7p.m./OCT-MAR 10.a.m.-6p.m./close on Monday,Tuesday(open on Tuesday during JUL-OCT)/capacity 30
  • Fuji shokudo[tiny eatery] capacity 3-5
  • Rien[souvenir shop] pilaf,coffee/10a.m.-5p.m./close irregulary/capacity 6/joined with 007 museum
  • Takoyaki Fuuchan[stall and 2 tables] takoyaki(octpus ball),fried chicken,chow mein/10a.m.-7p.m./closed on basically Tuesday

Honmura village

  • Café Maruya[small café] 11a.m-5p.m.(lo 4p.m.)/close on basically *Monday,open on Japanese holiday Monday instead close on following *Tuesday(It coincides Art House Projects' closing)/capacity 5-8

Tsumuura village

  • Benesse House reataurant most of menu are reservation required
  • Benesse House café currently drink only
  • Seaside Park restaurant currently closes untill new hotel's open 2006
  • Chichu Art Museum café
  • Tsutsuji-so[public facility] retort pilaf,retort curry&rice/closed on Tuesday(no close during JUL to AUG)


The best place to stay is near the two museums, but there are a few other accommodation options scattered around the island.


The island has half a dozen or so low-key minshuku and simple ryokan. It can be hard to find a vacancy, so reserving in advance is recommended. Seaside Park, a semi-luxury campground run by Benesse House, has closed in September 2005.


  • Hotel Benesse House. Rates start from ¥27,720 and climb up from there.


Naoshima is far enough off the beaten track to require a little preparation. English speakers are few. There are no banks to exchange nor exchange bureaus, and credit cards generally cannot be used for payment (Benesse House and Chichu Art Museum being the major exceptions). Most shops close in early evening and they close entirely on Sunday, and neither are there any convenience stores.


Hand-made unofficial English maps can be obtained at the small information office just on the corner left opposite the port.


External links

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