Top things to do

Top Choice Historic Site in Aikawa

Sado Kinzan

You'll have to venture up a steep mountain to access this gold mine, which produced large quantities of gold and silver until its demise in 1989. Descend into the chilly depths, where you'll encounter robots that dr…
Top Choice Festival in Sado-ga-shima

Earth Celebration

One of Sado's biggest drawcards is this three-day music, dance and arts festival, held during the third week in August. The event features okesa (folk dances), onidaiko (demon drum dances) and tsuburosashi (a phall…
Buddhist Temple in Mano & Sawata


Sado-ga-shima's oldest temple (dating from 741); although sadly neglected, it's still beautiful.
Buddhist Temple in Ryōtsu


This rustic wooden temple, with its thatched roof and pleasant gardens, is where the Buddhist monk Nichiren was first brought when exiled to Sado in 1271. Any bus on the Minami line from Ryōtsu can drop you off at t…
Buddhist Temple in Mano & Sawata


This temple exhibits a five-storey pagoda.
Museum in Mano & Sawata

Sado Museum of History & Tradition

Tireless robots and holograms illustrate dioramas of Sado's history and festivals.
Museum in Aikawa

Sado Hanga-mura Museum

Lovers of Japanese art will appreciate this rambling gallery where local artists display hanga woodblock prints depicting country life in Sado. Workshops (in Japanese) are available.
Seafood in Ogi & Shukunegi


The specialty here is awabi (abalone), grilled as a steak (at market rate) or, more affordably, barbecued with a sweet soy-sauce marinade and served over rice. Follow the shop-lined road snaking up the hill behind t…
Soba in Aikawa


This little soba shop, a few minutes' walk up the coast from the bus stop, is popular for its isonoya teishoku (a crisp assortment of tempura with a side of noodles). Turn right in front of the police station and lo…
Sushi in Ryōtsu


Get a taste of Sado's seas at this counter shop, directly across from the ferry terminal. The ji-zakana (local fish) set is a sampling of the day's catch. Look for the characters for sushi (すし) out front.