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Sekizenzan (Mount Sekizen)BeachesTsubajima (Tsuba Island)Akahonejima (Akahone Island)

Sekizenzan (Mount Sekizen)
Mt Sekizen is 369.8 metres tall and is the crowning glory of the main island of Iwagi. From the lookout atop Mount Sekizen, you have a panoramic view of the surrounding area. On a clear day you can see as far as Mount Ishizuchi on Shikoku. Sunsets are said to be particularly spectacular, as is the night sky. Many locals drive to the lookout for outdoor dining during the summer months. The spot is also popular for the "Tsukimi" (Moon Viewing Festival) which takes place at the end of summer.

The mountain is home to over 2000 "Sakura" or Cherry Blossom trees. Many of these were almost lost in a bush fire which swept the mountainside some years ago, but the local residents pulled together and managed to save them. The blossoms come into full bloom in mid-spring (April) and Iwagi's Sakura Matsuri (Cherry Blossom Festival) is attended by many visitors from various parts of the country. Quite recently, Iwagi was featured in a national publication as "Sakura No Jima" (Cherry Blossom Island).

Sekizenzan also provides the local paragliding community with a launch site (or two) for their activity. On a given afternoon in the warmer months, as many as three or four paragliders can be spotted circling in the air around the mountain.



Beaches
Apart from the mountain's attractions, Iwagi offers its beaches, quiet little rocky inlets on which you will most likely find yourself alone most days. You can collect enough shellfish for a meal off the rocks, or drop a line in for some fish or octopus. The sea is sheltered by the surrounding islands, making swimming safe and relaxing for adults and children alike. Of the three islands that make up Iwagi-mura (village), the nicest beaches to be found are on Tsubajima (Tsuba Island).



Tsubajima (Tsuba Island)
Tsubajima is the third island in the Iwagi-mura group, the other two being Akahone and the main island, Iwagi. The resident population of Tsubajima is zero, and the island is only accessible by private boats or chartered water taxi. The journey takes approximately 10 minutes from the main port on Iwagi. There are full camping facilities, a rest house with a small shop and Barbeque facilities available for visitor use. The main beach by the campsite is quite pretty, and popular during summer. Shellfish are abundant on the nearby rocks, and fishing opportunities are not to be missed. The island is also a regular excursion destination for school groups from the surrounding islands.



Akahonejima (Akahone Island)
Like Tsubajima, Akahonejima is completely unpopulated. Whereas the main attraction to the former is the beaches and campsite, the latter offers great bird watching opportunities. There is a ferry service which runs twice a day on Sundays for those who wish to make day trips to the island. Of course, those wishing to travel to Akahonejima on other days are welcome to make the five minute journey by chartered water taxi.


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