Naoshima in the Seto Inland Sea might have only been a quiet island with Mediterranean sights, beautiful beaches and quiet village. But in 1989, the Benesse foundation project began as a way to promote contemporary art all around the area. As a result, the tiny island (to explore by bike) is now a world-famous center for Art, featuring high-class museums (designed by Takao Ando) and many open-air exhibitions. The most famous sight being Yayoi Kusama’s “Pumpkins”. And the whole island is one of the Heisei 100 landscapes.
Many beautiful beaches!
One of the most famous sights of Naoshima, Yayoi Kusama’s “Pumpkins”
Many art pieces are to be find in the nature (and for free)… … and in Honmura village (West side of Naoshima)
The art house project features several houses (and a shrine) transformed in art installations, in Honmura (1030 yen for all)
“I love Yu”, Naoshima’s arty sento!
We highly recommend staying overnight.
How to get there?
Naoshima is not so far away, in the middle of Seto island. From Tokyo, one need first to take the shinkansen to Okayama, before heading to Uno port (via the JR Seto-Ohashi to Chayamachi and the JR Uno line, 580 yen and about 50 minutes). From there, regular ferries are reaching Miyanoura, the western port and village (20 minutes, 290 yen one way).
Naoshima is also to be reach from Takamatsu in Shikoku (50 minutes, 520 yen one way). More than that, a few ferries per day are also going from Uno to Honmura, the eastern village. Here are the timetables.