“Japan’s Hidden Tropical Island: Aogashima’
Many of the people think that Japan has only four Islands,But in reality japan is having several islands with different sizes.Aogashima is a tropical volcanic island in the Philippine Sea.The shape of the island, which is a small mountain in the volcanic vent, seems like it might even have been designed by someone.It is administrated by Tokyo but is located very far approximately about 358 kilometers (222 mi) south of Tokyo.It a small island in Southern Japan that lies in the Pacific Ocean and the most isolated inhabited island of the Izu archipelago.The volcanic island is about 3.5 km in length with a maximum width of 2.5 km.It is formed by the overlapping remnants of at least four submarine calderas.The village of Aogashima is administered under Hachijo Subprefecture of Tokyo Metropolis.The Island itself is a giant volcanic carter and within that carter there’s another small volcano.As of 2010, the 9 square kilometer island has 98 households and a population of 165, making it the smallest village in whole Japan.The island only has one post office and one primary school with 25 students,when they reach 15 years they have to go to high school on mainland.
The distinctive characteristic of this island is that it has a small crater within the larger crater,which is formed by an eruption in 1783 to 1785. This small crater is called Maruyama and is still emitting geothermal steam around an area where no plants are seen.Looking almost identical like Jurassic Park-like natural fortress, the volcanic island is known as a caldera.According to the records,The first written records of the island appear around the 15th century.It can be seen that many of them are of shipwrecks so there’s a strong possibility that sailors may have taken refuge on the island and eventually they may made it their home place.It is last erupted in the 1780′s,During 1781-1785 the eruptions led to mass evacuation in 1783 and then severe casualties in 1785 – over 1/3 of the population. The only way to reach the island is either through Sanbō port on a small ship during calm seas or chartered helicopter.
How to reach:
To reach Aogashima Island, there are two options only-one is to take a passenger boat called “Kanjumaru” and the other is to take a helicopter provided by Tokyo Island Shuttle Service. Both of them depart from Hachijojima, with the nearest island some 60 km away.Sometimes it can be hard to get a boat to or from the island safely.Before 1993 as the helicopter services are not yet started to this Volcanic Island,all of the goods,food,raw material,all of the resources are carried to this island through boat services only.After the establishment of this helicopter services it became easy to transport goods food and resources to this Island.however, it runs once a day and carries only a maximum of 9 passengers.In many of the cases this service is cancelled due to bad weather conditions over there.This is why Aogashima is still a rarely-visited island with a small amount of visiting travellers.
The main attraction of the Volcanic Island is the tropical paradise.In the center of the island lies a geothermal sauna.For new people it is a great place to visit and relax and unwind, basking in all the serenity.Walking up to the lookout takes about 45 minutes and the view is spectacular. You can also walk over the rim of the volcano, across the middle and through a tunnel to the South coast, which is where the boat arrives.You could also consider hiking and camping by the volcano, or visiting the volcanic hot springs .The hot streams from the Volcano are used to power up the Island and it is sufficient for the whole Island.Before you want to visit this Volcano you have to keep in mind that it is an active Volcano.There is a public facility utilizing the geothermal power and gas and people use it to cook food and is available for all the people for free of cost.We can find Steamed fresh vegetables, potatoes or eggs which are one of the specialties of Aogashima. The facility also features a sauna, a public bath, and hot shower.All parts of the caldera is covered with environment friendly plants.The rolling hills, small lakes, and all other surroundings is very stunning right here.The folklore songs That are sung by the people over here are mostly about the stories leaving island and parting their loved ones.Hingya the natural salt is produced by using the geothermal steam at Ikenosawa.To produce the natural salt, Kuroshio sea water, abundant with mineral and calcium, is slowly crystallized by the geothermal steam over weeks, that creates a mild taste.
The local people are seen to be friendly, helpful and calm to tourists.For people who want to stay for some days, the accommodation can cost about $ 50-95 per night in the area known as Ikenosawa Fumaroles. There are no restaurants available on the island.Aogashima Island is perfect for nature lovers, as the biggest attraction is the double volcano Aogashima.There is a saying that If you did something wrong in such a closed village, there’s the fear that the next day it would be gossiped about by the entire village.