Naoshima, Honshu Island
Naoshima is an island located in the Seto Inland Sea of Japan. Though the island is much closer to Honshu, administratively it belongs to Kagawa Prefecture in Shikoku. The most prominent settlement on the island is Honmura which was established as a coastal castle town. A number of houses in this town have been radically reformed in the Art House Project. Miyanoura - the port at which you will likely alight - is now the passenger and transport hub for the island, yet remains a sleepy coastal town.
Naoshima is renowned for its collection of contemporary art galleries and exhibits. For example, the Chichu Art Museum (literally, "in the earth") houses a number of site-specific installations by James Turrell, Walter De Maria and paintings by Claude Monet. Designed by Tadao Ando, it is located on one of the highest points of the island, and various exhibits and facets of the museum's architecture take advantage of its commanding view. Another contemporary museum (and hotel) is Benesse House. This original contemporary art museum remains one of the best. A superb fusion of nature, art and architecture that display the works of Andy Warhol, Richard Long, Bruce Nauman and others. The Museum building (now one of 4 buildings in the complex) was designed by world famous Japanese architect Tadao Ando. There are also numerous outdoor exhibits. Another is the Naoshima Fukutake Art Museum, with an outdoor sculpture garden.
The island can be quite hilly but pleasant enough along the coasts for biking and walking, except for the road from Miyanoura to Chichu Art Museum. It is possible to see all the sights on this island in one day. There are beaches and mountains here, so swimming gear, sunscreen and some good walking shoes are advisable.
Things to See & Do
* Chichu Art Museum
* Benesse House
* Lee Ufan Museum
* Art House Projects
* Naoshima Bathhouse
Cruise Season - Jan - Dec
Currency - Yen (JPY)
Language - Japanese
Population - 3,585 approx
Land Area - 14.22 km2
Electricity - 2 perpendicular flat pins USA style or with a round pin below
Time - GMT plus hours nine hours
International Country Telephone Code - 81
Port Location - Naoshima has three ports, Miyanoura, Honmura and Seto port.
Travel Links - Naoshima can be reached by boat from Uno (Honshu) and from Takamatsu (Shikoku). Most services go to Miyanoura.
From Okayama, a stop on the San'yo shinkansen, there are infrequent local trains directly to Uno (65 minutes). Otherwise, take the Marine Liner rapid train and transfer at Chayamachi (for the train to Uno (40 minutes with a good connection).