Hateruma Island

The Edge of Japan Where You Can Gaze up at The Southern Cross...

The row of traditional houses and the spread of sugar cane fields are what visitors will see on the Japan’s southernmost inhabited island.

The island’s name means, in its original sense, “corals on the edge of the world.” Inscriptions on a stone monument atop Takana Cape say this is the Japan’s southernmost point in terms of inhabited land. The cape looks down on raging waves crashing against the cliffs.

The minimum light pollution and the stable air current permit an ideal astronomical observation point. A star gazing tower established here is a good place to watch the Southern Cross. Nishihama beach on the northwest of the island boasts one of the most beautiful beaches in the archipelago with its white sand and transparent water.

“M’shaama” is held on the 14th of July during Obon period on the lunar calendar, the largest event in the community to revere family ancestors and offer prayers for good harvest and safety.