Cape Sata

Posted December 3, 2010 by kanoyaalts
Categories: Places of Interest in and around Kanoya

Cape Sata is the southern most tip of mainland Japan. It is abouit 70km south of Kanoya on the 269. In it`s hey day there were lots of activities around their with several restaurants etc. unfortunately after the bubble burst in the 80s all these went under. Cape Sata itself is reached by a short hike through a tunnel and down a pathway then back up again. You go past an abandoned restaurant, which if you are adventurous is fairly easily accessible. Inside it looks a bit like the mary celeste with abandoned plates downatairs and upstairs having books still open on the pages that were being read at the time. After this there is the look out point. For 200 yen you can go to the top of the tower. From here you get a great view out down towards the islands and on a clear day you can see out to Yakushima. On the way back you pass by the Sata day go, which is a glass bottomed boat, this takes you out for about 30 mins around the local islands where you can see lots of fish and if you are lucky a sea turtle. There is a also a nice beach here. At the entrance tot he Sata parka bout 10km from the Sata itself there is a Buddhist temple run by a slightly bizarre Buddhist sect. This place`s main draw is the giant 50 foot long plastic Buddha on a huge concrete plinth. This is a very strange sight and certainly worth stopping by to see it.



Uchinoura area beaches

Posted December 3, 2010 by kanoyaalts
Categories: Places of Interest in and around Kanoya

There are three beaches down the east coast of the Osumi peninsular. The first one you get to is Uchinoura beach this is next door to the biggest town in the area Uchinoura. The beach is long and very beautiful surrounded by the valley as it is. It is especially good at night though as during the summer months the water here is full of bio-luminescent algae that glow as you move through the water. We have spent many an evening bbqing on the beach here. Further down the coast there is Kishira beach. This is an excellent beach for swimming at as there is a barrier built to protect the houses by the water front from the worst of the typhoons that can hit this area. There is also a good area for do some rock scrambling near the carpark for the beach. The final beach is the most beautiful, Hetsuka beach. It is a little off the main road down the 74. You turn off at hetsuka town down a tiny little road. The beach itself is not great for swimming but is just stunning. It is normally absolutely deserted. The beach itself is cut in half by a small river. Behind the beach is a simply beautiful valley that stretches right up into the mountains down in the south of the Osumi peninsular. In this valley about a five minute drive away in an incredibly beautiful swimming hole down a steep valley side and into a small river. This place is almost completely unknown and a great place to visit. I can highly recommend all these beaches for places to visit.

Takakuma Mountains

Posted December 2, 2010 by kanoyaalts
Categories: Places of Interest in and around Kanoya

The Takakuma`s are a range of mountains just to the north of Kanoya. The highest mountain in the range is around 125m above sea level. They very attractive mountains that can be seen especially well from the Nishihara area of Kanoya. There are a few roads into the mountains and these raods offer some of the best driving experiences in the Osumi peninsular with incredibly windy roads. It is possible to drive some way up into the mountains to a couple of hundred metres below the tallest mountain, from here a well maintained path leads you up to the television towers that give you an amazing view of the valley below. If you make it here for sunset it is an incredibly beautiful scene. It is possible to follow a hiking path from the television towers to the top of the mountain. There are several other hiking paths around the Takakumas. The best place to find out the information for this is at the Osumi outdoor adventure centre in the Takakuma. This can be reached by following the signs from the 220 heading for Taramizu.


Aira Sanryo

Posted December 2, 2010 by kanoyaalts
Categories: Places of Interest in and around Kanoya

This is the tomb of the first emperor of Japans parents. The tombs date back to approximately 650 BC. It is about 2 km outside Aira town. It is an area of great holiness for the locals and is the favorite place for the Japanese to come and pray at New Year. The tomb is in an extremely beautiful valley in a cave. The cave entrance is marked by a stone torii and guarded by a member of the Japanese imperial guard who comes all the way from Kyoto. The tomb is at the end of a pathway through a small forest of pine trees. It is not possible to actually get to the tomb itself it is off limits to anyone that is not a member of the Imperial family or their trusted agents. None the less it is still a  very beautiful place to visit and incredibly peaceful. Next door to the carpark is a calm area of the river where a large number of Koi carp are kept.

Cape Toi Misaki Fire Festival

Posted August 31, 2010 by kanoyaalts
Categories: Local Events, Places of Interest in and around Kanoya

Cape Toi, in neighbouring Miyazaki Prefecture, is a popular tourist spot. Things to see here include;

  • The Cape Toi horses, a breed of wild horse from Japan
  • The views across Shibushi Bay down to Uchinoura
  • The local Shrine

Every summer Cape Toi Misaki holds a fire festival, which we were lucky enough to attend this year. According to legend, a serpent that once terrorised the town was killed by a monk, who threw a torch into its mouth. Nowadays, a 30m pillar is erected to symbolise the snake and flaming torches are thrown at it. When a torch lands in the centre of the pillar a fireworks display begins There were also many performances on the night such as, Taiko drumming, singing and dancing.

Also in the surrounding area, there is ‘Monkey Island’. From the mainland, you can catch a boat out to a small island, inhabited by hundreds of monkeys. The boat leaves you there for about 30 minutes, which is plenty of time to watch them fight over the rice thrown to them by the boat’s captain, juggle their own shit and have a quick shag. There is nothing else on the island, though it is good fun on a sunny day!

Welcome newbies!!!!

Posted August 10, 2010 by kanoyaalts
Categories: JET Community News and Events

We would like to welcome Lewie to Kanoya! He is a new ALT from England. He will be attending schools in Kushira, replacing John, who decided to return home to America to attend Graduate School! In Japan, Lewie is interested in learning as much Japanese as possible, rock climbing, hiking, biking and Japanese cooking.

The Kanoya JET community also welcomes Bridget. She joins us from Oregon, USA. She will be attending 3  High Schools within Kanoya. In Japan, she too is interested in hiking, camping and meeting as many new people as possible.

We would like to welcome Lewie and Bridget to the Kanoya and Oosumi community. Please say hello if you see them around!


Posted August 10, 2010 by kanoyaalts
Categories: Places of Interest in and around Kanoya

Greenland.  No, it’s not the country in the middle of the north Atlantic.  No, it’s much, much better than that.  Located in the scenic prefecture of Kumamoto, about four hours north of Kagoshima, Greenland is the destination for elementary school tour groups and thrill-seeking gaijin alike.

An amusement park complete with rides and attractions for just about everyone (unless you happen to hate giant roller coasters of awesomeness and chillying exciting haunted hospitals), Greenland is the perfect weekend destination.

Want to know more?  We got you covered.

Varies.  We recommend the フレーパス, or the Free Pass (¥4700, children cheaper).  This gets you in the park and on all the rides worth riding, as well as some of the carnival attractions.  Honestly, we have no idea what the other ones were, but they involved paying per-ride once inside the park, and that’s just annoying.  Also, the Free Pass can be purchased once inside the park, but it’s an extra 100 yen.

How to get there:
Easy.  Take the tollway north to exit 12, then follow the conveniently labeled signs.  It’s in the city of Arao.  Enjoy.

For more info:

~Chelsea and Alex