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Iya Valley

Iya Valley is one of Tokushima Prefecture’s hidden gems with many sights that travelers won’t find anywhere else in Japan. The Iya River runs between forest-covered hills and mountains, showcasing the natural beauty of Tokushima. Due to its remote location, renting a car is highly recommended for exploring the valley.

  • Iya Kazurabashi and Oku-Iya Kazurabashi Bridges

    Iya Kazurabashi and Oku-Iya Kazurabashi Bridges

    Iya Kazurabashi and Oku-Iya Kazurabashi Bridges

    The Iya Valley area used to have many bridges that connected villages to the outside world, but now only three remain. They are preserved and faithfully rebuilt every three years to give visitors a sense of what the area looked like hundreds of years ago. Since most of the Iya Valley is largely untouched, this extra level of detail gives one the sense of being transported to another period of history.
    The Iya Kazurabashi is the largest of the three bridges, stretching 45 meters across the Iya River. This is the first bridge that visitors will encounter, followed by the two Oku-Iya Kazurabashi bridges further ahead. It’s suggested that visitors get an early start if they hope to see these bridges, as they are quite far into the valley. For visitors who want to stay the night, there are campgrounds on the other side of the Oku-Iya Kazurabashi bridges open from May to November.

  • Natural Hot Springs for Pure Relaxation

    Natural Hot Springs for Pure Relaxation

    Natural Hot Springs for Pure Relaxation

    Hot springs, or onsens, can be a relaxing way to spend an afternoon. To get to the onsens in the Iya Valley, you’ll need to visit one of the designated locations. Most onsens in the valley will provide guests with luxurious atmospheres at a relatively low price. For instance, Hotel Hikyounoyu has indoor and outdoor access available for 1,000 yen for adults and 500 yen for children. The water from onsens contains minerals, which are believed to alleviate a variety of ailments. At the very least, a quiet dip in an onsen is a nice way to relax after a long day of hiking.

  • The Strange Formations of the Oboke and Koboke Gorges

    The Strange Formations of the Oboke and Koboke Gorges

    The Strange Formations of the Oboke and Koboke Gorges

    The Oboke and Koboke gorges surround the Yoshino River near the entrance of the valley. The incredibly steep walls of the two gorges have been carved by the river to create interesting geological formations. One of the best ways to appreciate the area’s dramatic scenery is from the Yoshino River itself. There are several popular attractions visitors can partake in, such as whitewater river rafting and pleasure boat cruises. Happy Raft offers half-day and full-day guided tours down the rapids.

  • Iya Valley and the Statue of the Peeing Boy

    Iya Valley and the Statue of the Peeing Boy

    Iya Valley and the Statue of the Peeing Boy

    High above the Iya Valley, a precipice hangs 200 meters above the river below. This area is notoriously dangerous and visitors are no longer allowed to stand on the rocks, but they can go up for a look at the humorous statue of the peeing boy. The legend goes that young boys would pee off the side of the cliff to show their courage. Visitors should note that this attraction is in the eastern part of the valley, so it isn’t easily accessible from the western part of the valley.

  • Biwa Waterfall

    Biwa Waterfall

    Biwa Waterfall

    There is a legend that in the 12th century, a group of warriors known as the Heike warriors fled Kyoto after a bitter defeat and settled in the Iya Valley. The Biwa Waterfall features prominently in this tale, as it is where the warriors supposedly rested by the peaceful waterfall and played their biwa (a Japanese lute). The waterfall and the surrounding area requires a hike up a steep hill but visitors are rewarded with a serene and surreal atmosphere.

    Iya Valley
    Address
    Tokushima Pref. Miyoshishi Ikedachoumatsuo - Nishiyanyama Village
    Phone
    Iya-no-Kazurabashi Bridge
    Address
    Tokushima Pref. Miyoshishi Nishiyayamamurazentoku 162-2
    Phone
    0120404344
    Oku-Iya Double Vine Bridge
    Address
    Tokushima Pref. Miyoshishi Higashiya Tube production 620
    Phone
    Okuiyani0kazurabashi Campground
    Address
    Tokushima Pref. Miyoshi City Higashiiya-sugeoi
    Phone
    0883727620
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