A few tidbits of info that we hope will make your New Year jaunt to Miyajima a memorable one.
Thousands upon thousands of people visit Miyajima over the New Year holidays. It is, of course, crowded, but there is a great atmosphere and it can be great fun to throw yourself into the throng. The great thing about Miyajima is that no matter how many people squeeze into the most popular part of the island, it is relatively easy to find a quiet backstreet or corner in which to chill out.
If you are going to do Miyajima at New Year, why not go hardcore and do it on the night of New Year’s Eve? Special ferry and bus services make it possible to check out the Chinkasai Fire Festival early in the evening of New Year’s Eve, hit a few parties in Hiroshima city, call in at Gokoku Shrine and get back to visit Itsukushima Shrine, and even get to the top of Misen to greet the first sunrise of the year. You’ll need a holiday after that lot!
Special New Year’s Eve Trains
|Shiraichi → Saijo → Hiroshima → Miyajima-guchi → Iwakuni|
|Iwakuni → Miyajima-guchi → Hiroshima → Saijo → Shiraichi|
Special New Year’s Eve Ferries to Miyajima
The JR ferry between Miyajima-guchi and Miyajima Island runs through the night.
Miyajima-guchi to Miyajima Island
JR and Matsudai ferries run every 10-15 minutes on New Year’s Eve and through the night into New Year’s Day.
Miyajima New Year Tide Times
Time your visit to catch the glorious sight of Itsukushima Shrine “floating” on the sea at high tide as well as at low tide when you can walk right out to the torii gate.
|Date||High Tides||Low Tides|
New Year is big business on Miyajima so there will be many people willing to take your money off you. As well as the usual shops, cafes and restaurants there are lot of temporary stalls hawking all kinds of food.
- 12/31 06:30-17:00
- 1/1 24:00-18:30
- 1/2 06:30-18:30
- 1/3 06:30-17:30
- 1/4~ 06:30-17:30
Jyoya-no-kane ringing of the temple bell 108 times is conducted at Daishoin Temple. The first 108 people in line get to do the honors, but you’ll have to be lining up at around 9pm to have a shot at getting a spot.
- 12/31 06:30-24:00
- 1/1 24:00-19:00
- 1/2-4 06:30-18:30
New Year Rituals at Itsukushima Shrine
- 12/31 Chinkasai Fire Festival (report, details)
- 1/1-1/5 Itsukushima Shrine Rituals
- Itsukushima Shrine Tondo Festival
- 1/20 Momotesai Ritual Archery
- Open from 05:00 on New Year’s Day.
- Note that the first shuttle bus to the ropeway station isn’t until 09:20 on 1/1.
- Open as usual 09:00-17:00 daily.