Under construction for nearly a year, the Inazaki Observatory on the north-side of Zamami Island is finally open!
The old observation deck was in dire need of repair. The new Inazaki Observatory features both an observation tower and standard observation deck. While the tower is reserved for Whale Watching Association and Ministry of the Environment staff during whale-watching season (Dec.-Apr.), as long as the tower is not in use, regular visitors can climb its stairs for the best views north. Staff use the observation tower to search for whales and conduct surveys and studies concerning their locations.
The Inazaki Observatory is a long and arduous walk from the Zamami Port. While it is only 3.5 kilometers from the port, visitors must first climb Mt. Takatsukiyama before winding along the hilly roads on the north-side of the island. The easiest way to reach Inazaki would be via anything with a motor. For in-shape visitors who cannot drive in Japan, Inazaki might take anywhere from 40 minutes to an hour to reach on foot.
Whether you head to Inazaki by riding a vehicle or walking, the new observatory is sure to provide even better views as well as a chance to see whales during whale watching season (end of December until the beginning of April).