Katsurashima: Experience the History of the Islands

Katsurashiima is the westernmost island of Urato, and the closest to the mainland of Shiogama. The narrow island is home to two villages, Katsurashima to the west and Ishihama to the east.

Visitors can feel the history of the islands as they walk along hiking trails, enjoying stunning lookouts over Matsushima Bay, Matsusaki Shrine, the ”Ameyoshi” stone and other mysterious spots, though the island is best known for its beautiful sandy beaches with calm waves facing-out to the vast Pacific.

The fishing industry is the mainstay of the island, and the seaweed and oysters cultivated in the nutrient-rich bay are particularly famous for their excellent taste and quality. In early spring, the night sea is beautifully lit by fires of the whitebait fishermen; a sight that heralds the coming of spring in the Urato Islands.


Katsurashima Beach

The beautiful Katsurashima Beach is well maintained and attracts many local tourists in the summer.
Toilets and showers are available, so you can make the most of the sea with peace of mind.
Beach clean-ups and other activities are held regularly.


Island Walks

The vast Pacific Ocean, colourful morning and evening skies and the clean, fresh air all around.
Enjoy the relaxed and unique island atmosphere on one of Katsurashima’s walking trails.
With an a map in hand, it is possible to walk across the island in about one hour.


Flower Fields

As you walk around the island, you will find beautifully landscaped flower fields and spectacular viewpoints.
Golden ”nanohana” blossoms, sunflowers, cosmos flowers… enjoy the dynamic landscape with each change of the season!


Katsurashima ”Stay Station”

Katsurashima ”Stay Station” is a community exchange and training facility, housed in the former Urato Second Elementary School building.
It can be used not only as a centre for short-term island experiences and training activities, and as a space to connect with the local islanders. (※Reservations required)


Ishihama Fishing Port

Walking west across the island from Katsushima village, you’ll reach Ishihama village and its fishing port, the second boarding point for the Shiogama City Ferry on the island, as well as the free shuttle-ferry to neighbouring Nonoshima Island.
It has a unique, nostalgic atmosphere and has been chosen as a film location, making it a great hidden-gem for photography lovers.


Site of the Former Residence of Kozo Shiraishi

This is the site of the former residence of Kozo Shiraishi, who was instrumental in the opening of Shiogama Port in the 1870s, opening the route to ports in Hokkaido and Sanriku. Shiraishi himself was active in world pelagic fishing (sea otter hunting).
The foundation stones, stonework and stone-lanterns of the house still remain, giving visitors a sense of the prosperity of the time along with calming views over the calm waters of the Pacific.


”Postcard” Tree

This mysterious tree is an evergreen broad-leaf tree of the mochinochaceae family called ”tarayo”. Its bark can be used to write letters (like a postcard), and has been used since ancient times to send messages to distant friends. Even today, it can still be sent it by post, as long as it is fixed with a stamp! (The tree is located in the grounds of the Former Residence of Kozo Shiraishi.)