Nagata Lighthouse, a Witness of Time

Situated in the north of Yakushima Island, off the coast of Kyushu, this lighthouse is one of the oldest in Japan.


WordsClémence Leleu

© Kagoshima Trip

With its churchlike design and its walls painted bright white, Nagata Lighthouse marks the island’s northernmost point. Built in 1897, making it one of the oldest in Japan, it is located on the island of Yakushima, particularly known for its star-shaped sand and its virgin forest that is said to have inspired the setting of the film Princess Mononoke by Hayao Miyazaki. 


An unobstructed view over the blue vastness of the sea

Access to this luminous watchtower has to be earnt. To reach it and be able to enjoy a 360-degree view over the sea and the surrounding nature, visitors have to leave the main road that snakes through the mountains and cedar trees to venture along a little winding route one kilometre in length that leads curious travellers to the lighthouse, a place where the island’s residents meet to watch the sunset. 

The island of Yakushima can be accessed by plane from Osaka, Fukuoka, or Kagoshima, or by sea from the port of Kagoshima. There are few public transport routes, so it is advisable to hire a car in order to be able to travel around easily. 

For those wishing to discover more about Yakushima, 75% of which is covered with mountains, documentary maker Damien Faure shot a feature-length film there, entitled Milieu, which captures the very essence of this wild land. 


More information about the Nagata lighthouse can be found on the Yakushima town website.


© Kagoshima Trip

© Kagoshima Trip