Introduction to Shimoda
Located in the south of the Izu Peninsula is the historic seaside town of Shimoda with its surrounding white sand beaches.
Shimoda is famous as the landing place of American Commodore Perry’s ‘Black Ships’ in 1853 which is regarded as the start of diplomatic relations between Japan and the USA.
Highlights of Shimoda
A good place to start sightseeing in Shimoda is Perry Road which follows a canal with picturesque bridges and is full of craft stores, cafes, bars, and restaurants.
At the end of Perry Road, you will find Ryosenji Temple which has a great little museum with a collection of paintings, maps, and other artifacts related to the landing of the Black Ships.
Shimoda is home to some wonderful beaches, hot springs, and a floating aquarium where you can snorkel with dolphins making it popular with both families and outdoor enthusiasts.
Close to Shimoda
Things to do & See
SUMMER ( June - August - 15 - 35 degrees)
June to mid-July is generally recognized as Tsuyu or rainy season in Japan but June is also the best time to catch the hydrangea festival in Shimoda and a lovely time to be in town.
The annual Shimoda Taiko festival on August 14th & 15th is a nearly 400-year tradition that is quite unique to Shimoda which is full of color and noise.
AUTUMN ( September - November - 10 - 25 degrees)
The typhoon season in Japan runs from as early as May through to as late as November.
While this can possibly affect your trip to Izu typhoons can also provide the best waves for surfers looking for the perfect break.
WINTER ( December - February - 5 - 20 degrees)
Although it is cold in Shimoda during the Winter months the weather is generally sunny and not nearly as cold as in other areas of Japan.
In early February the daffodils bloom on Cape Tsumekisaki and although it is wise to dress warmly some of the coastal walks in and around Shimoda are spectacular.
SPRING (March - May - 10 - 25 degrees)
While much of Shimoda sleeps through the winter months it starts to come alive as the weather warms in March with cherry blossoms blooming in mid-March.
In mid-May, the town comes alive for the Black Ship festival which celebrates the opening of Japan to the World in the mid-1850s and USA / Japan relations.
Take the Tokaido-Sanyo Shinkansen Kodama from Tokyo to Atami, and change to the local train which will take you to Izukyu-Shimoda station.
Take the Tomei Expressway from Tokyo and follow signs to Shizuoka. Take the Nagaizumi-Namazu IC towards Izu Jukan Expressway/Mishima/Shimoda.
Continue onto Route 136 and Route 414 to reach Shimoda.
The main tourist attractions in Shimoda Town can be accessed by foot and it is recommended to take a walk along Perry Road from the bust of Commodore Perry at the harbor to the Museum and Ryosenji Temple at the end of Perry Road.
Bicycle rentals are also available from Shimoda Station and are a great way to get around most of the town.
If you plan to venture out to the coast it is best accessed via car or campervan - rental cars are available from close to Shimoda Station.
Shimoda has a selection of traditional ryokan with an Omotenashi service that includes hot springs, multi-course meals and relaxation.
HOTELS & RESORT HOTELS
There is no shortage of hotels in Shimoda around the town and on the coast overlooking the ocean. Shimoda also has 2 resort hotels within 6km of the center of town.
MINSHUKU & GUESTHOUSES
There are a number of guest houses and minshuku around Shimoda, especially a little out of the main town towards the coastal area.
CAMPGROUNDS & CAMPING CAR OPTIONS
There are a few options for those wanting to camp with 4 campsites around Shimoda.
Check Mount Fuji Travel to find and book activities in Shimoda.