Exploring Mie: the stunning landscape of Ise Shima, one of Japan’s natural panoramic views

三重を知ろう ~ 日本の原風景 伊勢志摩の素晴らしい景色 ~

2018/02/14 Wednesday Culture and Leisure., Exploring-Mie

In Mie Prefecture there are many places to enjoy both nature and culture.

Ise Shima, the city chosen as the host for Ise Shima Summit 2016, was designated as Ise Shima National Park and it is one of the places in Japan where abundant natural landscapes still remain. That region is well- known by giving rise to Ise Jingu, Ama culture (woman diver), pearl cultivation and it is also a region that inherited cultures and long-standing traditions.

In this video, we will present the beauties of Ise Shima through the content extracted during the “Instameet@Ise Shima Kokuritsu Kouen”, sightseeing spots tour to promote photos on social media.

If you haven’t yet experienced or have never visited Ise Shima, take the places presented in this video as a reference and visit the region! You will find truly stunning landscapes.


Our journey starts at Ise Shima Skyline, an area connecting Ise and Toba cities. Even though a fee of 1.250 yen is charged (for ordinary vehicles), a relaxing route boasting stunning landscapes is waiting for you.

We started the tour going to Ise city, first we visited the Asamayama Observatory. A recommended place boasting an incredible view.

Asamayama is located within Ise Shima National Park and it is one of the sightseeing spots in Mie Prefecture selected as one of  “Japan’s one hundred landscapes”. That mountain, a famous place due to its beautiful sunrise on the first day of the year, is also well-known because it is a sacred mountain representing Ise Shima.

The observatory, situated on the edge of 555 meters high, boasts an excellent visibility of Ise Bay’s islands. On sunny days, it is possible to see Mount Fuji and the Southern Alps.

[Interview – Atsushi Kobayashi- Gifu]

“Today I was blessed by the good weather and I managed to take pictures while I was thrilled by this blue sky and incredible landscape able to cleanse the soul. It is an extremely beautiful place and I want to come again, I want to record this spectacle more times.

Is it worth a visit?

“Yes. Sure!

At the summit it is possible to enjoy thermal water foot baths.

Website: https://www.kankomie.or.jp/spot/detail_1609.html

Google Maps: https://goo.gl/maps/Cw3jnqy1jJm

金剛證寺 (Kongou Shoji)

The next place is Kongou Shoji, located next to Asamayama Observatory. The entrance is free. That place is known as the guardian temple of Kimon, direction where demons enter and go out, of Ise Jingu and inner temple of Jingu, it was common for people carry out the pilgrimage after visiting the Ise Jingu, as mentioned on Ise songs (Ise Ondo) in the excerpt saying: “If you visit Ise Jingu you will also have to go to Asama, if you won’t go to Asama you will not have concluded the pilgrimage” (“O Ise Mairaba Asama wo Kakeyo, Asama Kakeneba Katamairi”).

The Maniden, stunning golden-plated main temple inside and red outside, was selected as an important culture inheritance of the country (juyou bunka-zai).

Website: https://www.kankomie.or.jp/spot/detail_3035.html

Google Maps: https://goo.gl/maps/mzua2FVt6nP2


Following through Ise Shima Skyline, we get in Toba city. Traveling about 40 minutes by car from Toba, we have the Kashikojima Port in Shima city. Here it is possible to enjoy the beautiful Ago Bay boarding a cruise boat. The fee for adults is from 1.400 yen.

Marked by the complex coastline, the Ago Bay is also located within Ise Shima National Park. Pearls production has developed there and, since 8th century the place has been exporting pearls. Since the beginning of pearls cultivation late in the 9th century, this is the first major area of pearls cultivation.

The several islands and peninsulas of many shapes boast a beauty that cannot be expressed by words. Taking pictures of this place is also pleasant, but enjoy the landscape in the open may be an unforgettable experience.

Website: https://www.kankomie.or.jp/spot/detail_6701.html

GoogleMaps: https://goo.gl/maps/9KtvxKbmFjx

桐垣展望台 (Kirigaki Tenboudai)

To conclude the tour we will present the Kirigaki Observatory. It is a place where it is possible to take incredible pictures, however the sunset landscape is the most recommended.

The Kirigaki Observatory is located on the east side of Ago Bay, between the following islands: Kashikojima (right side), Masakijima (front) and the Sakishima Peninsula (left side). It is a place well-known by the beautiful sunset representing Shima city, and many people who appreciate photography visit this sightseeing point. The beautiful scenery of Ago Bay colored by sunset is amazing and it is worth a visit to experience that moment. If you go for a stroll around Ago Bay, visit the observatory. Entrance and parking lot are free of charge.

[Interview – Manabe – Shiga]

“Today I came here to take a picture of the sunset ending. The twilight is not so strong, but I’ve tried to take long exposure photography (timelapse). The passing clouds were good, and I could take a nice picture. It is a nice place to enjoy the crimson sunset and recommended to take pictures”.

Website: https://www.iseshima-kanko.jp/spot/1338/

GoogleMaps: https://goo.gl/maps/fnm8cynG7e52

In this video we presented just one part of the beauties of Ise Shima. There are other several places to take pictures and publish on social media. The Ise Shima National Park, compared to other national parks, has an extremely high percentage of private property (96%), in addition to a high number of residents, offering the opportunity to get to know people’s daily life, history, culture, costumes, among others.

Besides the stunning nature, it is a region able to respond the varied needs of families, groups of friends or travelers due to local food, temples full of history, theme parks, hotels, among others. Come to Ise Shima and experience the beauties the region has to offer!

If you want to learn more about Mie, access MIE INFO’s section called  “Exploring Mie”. What about having a nice day with your friends or family in the stunning Mie Prefecture?

Click on the link below:


11th “Umashi Kuni Mie” Inter-City Relay Marathon

2018/02/14 Wednesday Culture and Leisure., Exploring-Mie


With the aim to inspire the sportsmanship of all citizens by seeing, practicing and helping sports, teaching the young generations, developing and enhancing even more the cooperation and collaboration between the municipailities in Mie Prefecture, the 11th “Umashi Kuni Mie” Inter-City Relay Marathon (Dai 11kai Umashikuni Mie Shicho Taiko Ekiden) will be held.

On the day of the marathon, roads in wide areas may not be accessible. The organizing team asks for your understanding.


2018, 18 February (Sunday)   Start at 8:45 am (*there is no cancellation even it rains)

Marathon route

From Mie Prefectural Government office (Tsu) to Ise Sports Stadium (Mie KoutsuG Sports no Mori Ise Rikujou Kyogijou) 42.195km (relay in 10 sections)

Organizing team

Organizing Committee of Dai 11kai Umashikuni Mie Shicho Taiko Ekiden (Chairman/Mie Mayor Suzuki Eikei)


Representing Team of Mie municipalities

Main regulation related to traffic

  • 9am to 11:45am – Both roads on the Prefectural Road of Toba and Matsusaka Line (between the intersection Miya-cho in Matsusaka and the intersection on the Watarai Bridge) will not be accessible. Please, use the Nasnei By-pass (Japan National Route 23)
  • 10am to 11:15am – the segment covering Gekku, at Ise Jingu, and the Ujirata-cho intersection (Mikimoto avenue) will not be accessible. Timetable may change upon the course of the marathon.
  • The police and members of the organizing team will give directions on streets of restricted access and routes available.
  • Please, do not park your car on the area covering the marathon.

A municipal exchange fair will also be held (products exhibition) at the Sports Stadium, finish line.

Hour: 10:00am to 2:00pm

Mie local food will be available for sale at the place! Enjoy the local food along with your family!

*Additional information and details related to the traffic rules, as well as the municipal exchange fair, access the following link (only in Japanese)


Contact information:

Mie-ken Chiiki Renkei-bu Sports Suishin-kyoku Sports Suishin-ka
〒514-8570  Tsu-shi Komei-cho 13 banchi (main office 2nd floor)
TEL  059-224-2986     FAX  059-224-3022  E-mail  sports@pref.mie.jp