They are also known as Bonin Islands in English and guess what? They sit right in the middle of the Pacific Ocean and are listed as a UNESCO World Natural Heritage site! The Ogasawara Islands are a floating paradise, rich in natural beauty.
About Ogasawara Islands
Having never been connected to any continent, the Islands are home to a wealth of fauna, including a critically endangered bat called the Bonin Flying Fox and a host of 195 endangered bird species. Ogasawara Islands’ ecosystems exhibit a collection of plant species from Northeast and Southeast Asia and through this they mirror a range of evolutionary progresses. By reason of never having been connected to any continent by land, the flora and fauna of the Ogasawara Islands have evolved in a unique way. Most species of wildlife on the islands are now classified as rare or endangered species.
The Bonin Blue
This is a deep blue color ocean that surrounds the Ogasawara Islands, thus earning its name of the Bonin Blue. You can enjoy a breathtaking view of the ocean from various of points around the islands. The absolute, rocky cliffs and deep blue ocean expansive right in front of your eyes will undeniably leave a strong unforgettable impression on you. You also get to enjoy a variety of marine activities such as fishing, scuba diving, sea kayaking and snorkeling in the Ogasawara ocean.
It is a Protected Area
Majority of areas on the islands are classified as Forest Ecosystem Protection Zones. You may only explore the developed pleasure trails without a guide. You would be required to be accompanied by a permit-holding guide if you wish to explore other forest or mountain areas. The presence of many unique species of plants and animals, necessitates visitors to explore and enjoy the Ogasawara Island with a guide.
Hiking and exploring in Ogasawara Islands, aside from the developed pleasure trails, the majority of other areas of the islands are designated as Forest Ecosystem Protection Zones. If you wish to enter other forest or mountain areas, you would be required to be accompanied by a permit-holding guide. Since there are many unique species of plants and animals, visitors are encouraged to explore and enjoy the Ogasawara Island with a guide.
Where are the Ogasawara Islands?
The Ogasawara Islands are 1000 kilometers directly south of Tokyo, Japan. They are oceanic islands comprised of about 30 islands of various sizes, from north to south. including but not limited to Mukojima Islands, Chichijima Islands, Hahajima Islands, Iwo Islands, Okinotori Island, Minamitorishima and Nishinoshima to name just but a few.
Minamijima is located southwest of Chichijima and has submerged karst topography. The Ohgi Ike has absolutely beautiful scenery that makes you feel that you are in a totally different world.
Anijima precious dry scrub forest is full of widespread species including the katamaimai snail. In addition, the Sekimon Area on Hahajima is the forest ecosystem preservation area that has very rare endemic species composed mainly of the hydrarch tall tree forest.
Ogasawara Islands Ferry from Tokyo and others
You would be able to get to Ogasawara on the liner ship Ogasawara-maru which leaves at Takeshiba Pier, Tokyo. The liner departs at 11:00 in the morning and arrives at Futami Port, Chichijima at 11:00 in the morning on the following day. Reservation in advance is needed to ride on the Ogasawara-maru. The reservation methods are either to make an online reservation with the operators of Ogasawara-maru, at Ogasawara Marine Transportations via their official website, you could also make a reservation by phone or counter, or through a travel agency.
- Spot name: Ogasawara
- City Hall Address: Nishimachi, Chichi-jima, Ogasawara-mura, Tokyo 100-2101
- Access to Main Island: by Ogasawara-maru from Takeshiba Pier, Tokyo