Just off the coast from Ishinami-kaigan, the tiny island of Kō-jima is home to a group of monkeys that apparently rinse their food in the ocean before eating, but they're a fickle bunch and hard to spot. Boats (¥1000 per person or ¥3000 per boat) can be hired at the beach near the bus stop. Ask a fisherman if you don't see any boats waiting near the seawall.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Kyūshū attractions

1. Cape Toi

6.17 MILES

Toi-misaki is famed for its wild horses. However, lest you think this means a stampede of never-seen-a-human-before stallions, it doesn't: these 'wild'…

2. Obi-jō

12.2 MILES

Only the seriously imposing walls of the original Obi-jō are intact, but the grounds and surrounding area host several important buildings, including the…

3. Udo-jingū

14.56 MILES

Reached via a coastal path, this brightly painted Shintō shrine occupies an open cavern overlooking unusual rock formations in the cove below. In 2017 the…

4. Kaeda Gorge

24.41 MILES

West of town, an 8km-long, well-maintained hiking path winds through this forested gorge following the Kaeda-gawa, a refreshingly clear stream filled with…

6. Legend of Hyūga Hall

24.85 MILES

At Aoshima-jinja, this museum tells the story of sun goddess Amaterasu, Emperor Jimmu and the founding of Japan in wax-museum-style dioramas with English…

7. Aoshima-jinja

24.88 MILES

This colourful, photogenic shrine on the island of Aoshima is a favourite of visitors seeking luck in love. To the right of the main shrine, a path lined…

8. Aoshima Island

24.92 MILES

The first thing you'll notice as you cross the Yayoibashi bridge (120m) to the island of Aoshima is the unique geological feature surrounding it. Called…