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  • Naoshima One Day Tour – The Holy Island of Contemporary Art

Naoshima One Day Tour – The Holy Island of Contemporary Art

Art & Culture

Aki T.

4.78(49) reviews
Kagawa
English, Japanese (Native)
8.5 hours
Private tour (only you and your group)
Up to 4 people

Located in the quiet and tranquil Seto Inland Sea, a small island, Naoshima is full of contemporary arts and architectures.

While you enjoy viewing the beautiful Seto Inland Sea, a 50-minute cruise takes you to the island from Takamatsu Port in Shikoku.

We'll visit various art sites and architectures designed by young hopeful artists, great masters of art, and world-famous architects.

Itinerary

Check out what we are going to do.
Feel free to personalize this offer.

Meeting Point

At Takamatsu Port, JR Takamatsu, Okayama, Uno Stations, Miyanoura Port in Naoshima, or at your hotel in Naoshima and Takamatsu

Cruise on the serene and beautiful Seto Inland Sea

Visit the museums – Benesse House Museum, Lee Ufan Museum, and Chichu Art Museum

Appreciate the outdoor works – Red and Yellow Pumpkins, Naoshima Pavilion, and so on

Visit Honmura district, the place of Art House Project

View the wonderful landscapes such as natural scenes and traditional town streets

Ending Point

At Takamatsu Port, JR Takamatsu Station, Miyanoura Port in Naoshima, or at your hotel in Naoshima

What to Expect

The name of the island dates back to the late 12th century when a retired emperor named the small island Naoshima meaning an island of gentle residents. Today, Naoshima is regarded as a holy land of contemporary art, drawing a lot of people both from home and abroad.

Why so? Artists and architects have sympathized a project aiming at creating significant spaces by bringing contemporary arts and architectures in resonance with the pristine nature of the Seto Inland Sea, a landscape with a rich cultural and historical fabric.

Naoshima is a major venue of Setouchi Triennale, a contemporary art festival held every three years in the Seto Inland Sea area. The next one will be held in 2019.

We visit three areas in Naoshima to appreciate the outstanding works created by distinguished artists and architects.

1. Benesse House Area

There are three museums all designed by a worldly notable architect, Tadao Ando who is a winner of Pritzker Prize regarded as Nobel Prize in architecture.

- Benesse House Museum

Built on high ground overlooking the Seto Inland Sea, the museum features artworks found not just within its galleries, but in neighboring areas such as the seashore and the nearby forest.

- Lee Ufan Museum

Located in a gentle valley surrounded by hills and the sea, the museum exhibits the works of an internationally acclaimed artist, Lee Ufan, offering a tranquil space where nature, architecture, and art come in resonance with each other.

- Chichu Art Museum

Built mostly underground to avoid harming the natural landscapes, the museum houses the artworks by Claude Monet, James Turrell, and Walter De Maria. The architecture itself can be seen as a very large site-specific artwork.

2. Honmura Area

The Art House Project is underway in Honmura area where empty houses are being renovated and turned into art sites. The area has ANDO MUSEUM that is 100-year-old traditional wooden house renovated by Tadao Ando. You can learn about Ando's works through photographs, sketches, and models, and see how the museum itself has revived this venerable old house.

3. Miyanoura Port Area

Miyanoura is the main port of Naoshima, where ferries come and go. Around the port, there are several artworks including conspicuous Red Pumpkin designed by Yayoi Kusama and Naoshima Pavilion by Sou Fujimoto. The elegant terminal building, the Marine Station Naoshima, is designed by a star-architects’ unit, SANAA – Sejima And Nishizawa And Associates.

I was born and raised in Kagawa prefecture facing the Seto Inland Sea.

Therefore, it’s my pleasure to guide you around Naoshima!

Want to personalize this tour?

  • Our tours can be customized according to your needs and preferences
  • Click below to tell us what you are looking for:

Inclusions & Exclusions

What‘s included

guide fee, hotel pick-up(in this case, please pay the guide's transportation fare from your hotel)

What‘s not included

transportation fare(you and guide), admission fee(you and guide), meals

Important Information

I can guide you in Okinawa and Kagawa including Naoshima and the other venues of Setouchi Triennale. If you would be interested in being guided by me in those places, please contact me to confirm my availability in advance.

This tour will be available when I stay in my home prefecture, Kagawa, a gateway to Naoshima. Therefore, please contact me to confirm the tour's availability in advance. I would appreciate it if you could give me an inquiry about the availability at least two weeks before the day of the tour.

This tour is not conducted on Mondays, because the museums are usually closed on Mondays.

Cancellation Policy

  • Free cancellation - 30 days prior to meeting time
  • 50% Refund - 15 to 29 days prior to meeting time
  • No Refund - Within 14 day(s) prior to meeting time

Frequently Asked Questions

Besides guide fee, how much does it cost for a one-day tour?

Although the cost varies according to our itinerary, a typical cost is approximately 10,000 JPY, or $90 USD per person.

For example, if you visit most of the art sites, the total cost comes to 10,130 JPY per person approximately.

- transportation fare: Approx. 3,000 JPY (High-speed boat and bus, for a round trip)

- admission fee to two museums(Chichu Art Museum, Lee Ufan Museum): 3,090 JPY

- admission fee to Art House Project and ANDO MUSEUM: 1,540 JPY

- lunch: 2,500 JPY

For more details, please refer to the Questions and Answers below.

How long does it take to get to Naoshima?

From Takamatsu Port, Kagawa prefecture,

It takes approximately 50 minutes by ferry or 25 minutes by high-speed boat.

The one-way fares are,

- Ferry: Adult 520 JPY, Child 260 JPY

- High-speed boat: Adult 1,220 JPY, Child 610 JPY

Takamatsu Port is located approximately 5 minutes walk away from JR Takamatsu Station, or 40 minutes car ride from Takamatsu Airport.

From Uno Port, Okayama prefecture,

It takes approximately 20 minutes by ferry. The one-way fares are Adult:290 JPY and Child:150 JPY.

Uno Port is located approximately 5 minutes walk away from JR Uno Station, accessible by train from JR Okayama Station, taking approximately 50 minutes.

How do we get around Naoshima?

We'll use bus to go to each area. Public bus and free shuttle bus services are available hourly.

The public bus fares are Adult:100 JPY and Child:50 JPY per a ride.

If you like, we can use rental bicycles. The average fee is approximately 1,500 JPY per day for renting a bike with a electric motor.

Walking is not always recommended, because the island has many ups and downs.

How much are the admission fees of the museums in Naoshima?

Chichu Art Museum:

- 2,060 JPY, free for children 15 and under

Benesse House Museum:

- 1,030 JPY, free for children 15 and under, and overnight guests at Benesse House

Lee Ufan Museum:

- 1,030 JPY, free for children 15 and under

ANDO MUSEUM:

- 510 JPY, free for children 15 and under

Art House Project:

- Multi-Site ticket for six art houses: 1,030 JPY, free for children 15 and under

- Single-Site ticket for one art house: 410 JPY, free for children 15 and under

What is the price range of lunch in Naoshima?

There are various types of restaurants serving many kinds of cuisines.

The typical price ranges per person are, for example,

- A Western-style restaurant: 1,500 yen to 3,000 yen

- A Japanese style restaurant: 1,500 yen to 3,000 yen

- A noodle shop: 1,000 yen approximately

Can you shorten the tour duration?

Yes, I can shorten the duration and reduce guide fee according to your request.

In this case, please contact me before booking. I'll offer you a customized tour based on your request.

What’s a recommended itinerary for this tour?

For example:

08:30 am

-Meet at the Takamatsu Port.

-Board a high-speed boat to Naoshima

09:05 - 09:35

-Move to Naoshima by high-speed boat

09:35 - 10:00

-Arrive at Miyanoura Port in Naoshima

-Move to Honmura Area by bus

10:00 - 12:30

-Visit Honmura Area

This area is the central area of Naoshima, retaining the old houses and townscapes.

The Art House Project is underway in the area where empty houses are being renovated and turned into art sites.

The area has ANDO MUSEUM, 100-year-old traditional wooden house renovated by a world-famous architect, Tadao Ando.

-Have lunch in Honmura area

12:30 - 13:00

-Move to Benesse House Area by bus

13:00 - 14:45

-Visit Chichu Art Museum built mostly underground to avoid affecting the natural scenery of the Seto Inland sea.

Artworks by Claude Monet, James Turrell, and Walter De Maria are on display in this building designed by Tadao Ando.

-Visit Lee Ufan Museum

Lee Ufan Museum is made with the collaboration between internationally acclaimed artist Lee Ufan and architect Tadao Ando.

14:45 - 15:30

-Move to Miyanoura Area by bus

15:30 - 16:25

-Visit an art site, Naoshima Bath "I love Yu" near the port

-Board a high-speed boat to Takamatsu

16:25 - 16:55

-Move to Takamatsu Port by high-speed boat

-At the port, our tour will end.

Can you guide me to the other venues of Setouchi Triennale?

Yes, I can.

I can offer you a customized tour for Setouchi Triennale. Please contact me for more details.

Can you escort me to my hotel?

Yes, I can. If your hotel is located in Takamatsu, please pay Hotel escort fee.

Guide’s transportation fare to the place is also required to be paid.

Can you arrange a private boat to Naoshima? How much does it cost for a boat?

Yes, I can arrange a private boat according to your request.

The cost varies, depending on the type of boat.

For example, it costs approximately $220 USD for a round trip between Takamatsu and Naoshima.

Can you pick me up at Takamatsu Airport?

Yes, I can.

Please pay Airport pick-up fee when you book.

Reviews

J

Jerome G.

Mar 21, 2020

Delightlful ....

Aki was very easy to work with and accomodating to our group of 6. As requested, he put together a 3 day itinerary for us based upon our interests and desired activity level. He is quite knowledgeable about "all things Tokyo" as well as the Japanese culture and history. He is a master of the Tokyo transit system and without him we would have had a difficult time navigating around. We asked Aki to join us during our lunches to show our appreciation and to be able to converse with him on a more personal level. He was always early to arrive at our hotel for pick up. I would highly recommend him.

Aki T.

Dear Jerry, Thank you so much for giving me such an excellent rating and review! That's very nice of you to say. It was my pleasure to have guided you and your friends. I enjoyed touring and had a wonderful time with you too. Thanks for coming to Tokyo and choosing me as your guide! Sincerely, Aki

J

Jerry M.

Oct 14, 2019

Invaluable

We spent three days with Aki, exploring the Setouchi Trienniale , using Takamatsu as a home base. We never could have done this without him. We had a great time. Thanks again Aki.

Aki T.

Dear Jerry, Thank you so much for giving me such an excellent rating and review! I enjoyed touring around the Setouchi islands and had a wonderful time with you too. Thanks for coming to Takamatsu and having me as your guide! Sincerely, Akio

J

Jerome E.

Sep 7, 2019

Aki gave us a great opportunity to experience Kamakura in a tight schedule

We had only 5 hours to visit Kamakura....and gave Aki an almost impossible mission. He succeeded! We saw all of the major sites and enjoyed the wonderful explanations that Aki provided with clear and nuanced English.

Aki T.

Dear Jerome, Thank you so much for giving me such an excellent rating and review! That's very nice of you to say. I hope you are all fine after the tour on a hot day. It was my pleasure to have guided you around Kamakura. Thanks for choosing me as your tour guide! Sincerely, Aki

Robin M.

Jun 1, 2019

Aki provided all we had hoped

Aki was a great guide. He took us to all the places we were interested in and was flexible in his plans given our interests and needs. He clearly knew his way around the island and all the museums. Couldn't have asked for more.

Aki T.

Dear Robin, Thank you so much for taking the time to give me such an excellent review! It was my pleasure to have guided you around Naoshima. I enjoyed touring with you too. It was fun to bike around the island! I hope you enjoyed your stay on the beautiful island. Thanks for coming to Naoshima and choosing me as your tour guide! Sincerely, Aki

$456/ per group

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