Kicked off another item on the Japan bucketlist and went to Rabbit Island (formally known as Okunoshima).
Last weekend, took an early flight to Hiroshima and then from there a bus to Takehara station and then a train to Tadanoumi and then a port to Okunoshima island. A plane, bus, train and a boat hop away from Tokyo and I was finally on Okunoshima.
Okunoshima is a tiny tiny island within the Seto inland sea, inhabited by rabbits. The island is pretty much uninhabited, but is a popular tourist destination. There is only one large hotel on the island which is usually always booked out, so we went “glamping” instead. (Glamping = glamour camping).
All accommodation on the island was booked out, so we got a special package from the hotel’s campsite area. The package was amazing value. 7000yen got us a tent (already set up), ground mats, a tarp and table set, buffet dinner at the hotel, buffet breakfast at the hotel and use of the hotel onsen. You can also BYO tent and set up on the campsite, but it was so nice that they set up our campsite and got to use the hotel facilities.
Prior to arriving on the island, at Tadanoumi ferry port, you should be sure to buy the rabbit pellets. You can buy 6 packets for 500yen. There is no food on the island for sale for the rabbits (or humans for that matter). The island has no shops and we struggled the first day when we discovered there were no shops, restaurants, conbinis etc, and only a couple of vending machines). Be prepared to bring your own food and be sure to buy the rabbit food when you buy the boat tickets.
The only facilities are at the hotel where there is a shop and restaurant to get food. Apart from that, there is not much on the island, apart from a lot of rabbits. There are also a bunch of military remnants and the poison gas museum. Okunoshima was used as military island during the war, and was the base for a poison gas manufacturing facility. The island has quite the sinister history. Very fascinating though. But a lot of people died as a result of the poisonous gas effects.
We arrived on the island at about 1pm. It was a beautiful day so we pretty much walked around the whole island (which has an approx. circumference of 4km). There are a lot of military ruins and remnants to see as you walk around chasing and feeding the rabbits. The island also has a bunch of really nice beaches, the water looked so clear and clean. Would be great in summer for a spot of camping and swimming.
Brace yourself for cuteness.
Who framed Roger Rabbit?
Eating cabbage – Lady and the Tramp-style
The rabbits eat right out of your hand
The bunnies are so adorable:
And here’s a gif:
Also no cars on are allowed on the island without a permit and there are no residents on the island, only the people working at the hotel:
Seto Inland Sea:
A photo of a photo in the hotel lobby:
Quite a few of the rabbits have mangy or scratched out eyes. They get into fights with each other.