Wildlife Tour of the Largest Tidal Flat in Kagoshima

Overview

Discover Kagoshima’s coastal wetlands with a knowledgeable local guide! Tour a vast tidal flat that is home to a rich ecosystem of wildlife and nature, and learn about the network of life that connects the seas and islands of Japan.

Highlights

  • Explore the Shigetomi-higata tidal flat — the largest coastal wetland in Kagoshima Bay!
  • Enjoy views of Sakurajima volcano from the expanse of nature in between sea and land
  • Learn about the rich ecosystem of migratory birds, shellfish, and more
  • Support the local community in preserving the endangered tidal flat
  • Meet the wildlife of Japan’s National Parks — perhaps you’ll make new friend!

Key Information

Important Information

- Please arrive at least 15 minutes before the start of the tour at Shigetomi Beach Nature House - The specific starting time of the tour depends on the tides, but can generally be scheduled between 9:00–16:00. Please provide your contact details during checkout so you can be informed of the tour’s confirmed starting time - Please note that the tour will be conducted in Japanese. If you wish to arrange for a personal interpreter, the cost will be 50,000 JPY, payable in cash at the venue - If you are reserving an interpreter, please do so at least 1 month in advance - In case of bad weather such as typhoons and thunderstorms, the tour will be canceled and fully refunded - Available rental gear: boots for 500 JPY (22–28cm) and raincoats for 500 JPY - Free lockers are available for participants to use The venue can be reached by bus (5-minute walk from Shigetomi beach stop) or train (10-minute walk from JR Aira Station). Please understand that in booking this activity, we may share your booking information (but without individually identifiable data) to the Ministry of the Environment, with which this activity is affiliated. By making a booking, you signify that you agree to these terms.

Description

Located in Kirishima-Kinkowan National Park and surrounding the iconic Sakurajima volcano, is Kagoshima Bay, often called ‘Kinko Bay’. Kinko Bay is renowned all over Japan for its mineral-rich seaweed that is used as an organic fertilizer for crops, with locals in Kagoshima using it to grow famously large crops, such as the giant Sakurajima radish that won a Guinness World Record for weighing in at 31.1kg. But what isn’t well known about Kinko Bay, is that the tidal flat surrounding it supports one of the richest coastal ecosystems in the world. Join an educational guided tour and learn about the surprisingly rich nature and wildlife in Kagoshima Bay’s largest tidal flat, Shigetomi-higata! Tidal flats — coastal wetlands formed by the changing levels of tides — are one of the world’s most extensive ecosystems by the sea. Not only are they the breeding grounds for many migratory birds that come to Japan when temperatures drop in mainland Asia, but they are home to various species of crabs, fish, mollusks, and shellfish, some of which have become endangered. For those interested in ecological preservation, this tour will be particularly interesting. Over the past decades, Kinko Bay, along with other coastal areas around the world, has experienced degradation from man-made pollution, dramatically impacting the wildlife living there. The Shigetomi-higata tidal flat, however, is an example of how through education and community effort, these changes can be reversed. Over the last decade, the local community in Kagoshima have taken great efforts to research, study, and protect their coastal regions, and as a result, have brought about tremendous improvements to the environment. Your tour guide is a specialist in the tidal flats of Kirishima-Kinkowan National Park, and though they will be conducting the tour in Japanese, you can’t help but feel their passion for the nature and wildlife around them. This tour is popular among locals, especially school children who wish to learn more about their area while having fun searching for wildlife in the tidal flat. The hands-on and sociable nature of this tour makes it an ideal activity for families with children. Marvel at the natural diversity of the tidal flat, glean insight into the ecosystem that supports so much of life on land, and support a community that is trying to protect a part of their home. Book now for an educational and fun experience of Kinko Bay! The venue can be reached by bus (5-minute walk from Shigetomi beach stop) or train (10-minute walk from JR Aira Station).

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