Teshima Island

A combination of “old” and “new” Japan

Brief Introduction

Teshima is an administrative district of Tonosho Town, Shodoshima Island and is well-known for its Meiji era structures, narrow lanes framed by stone walls, eateries and art museum.The island is also home to art installations from the Setouchi Triennale Art Exhibition. At its heart, Teshima is a rural island that is profoundly agricultural, where you will find both conventional and terraced fields. Located along the former trade routes of the Seto Inland Sea, past commercial prosperity accounts for the splendor of the island’s residences.

When you visit the island, you will notice the joie de vivre of the local residents who have helped to not only preserve its culture but also transform Teshima into an art and leisure destination. There are several traditional Japanese homes that have been converted into guesthouses, allowing visitors to get a sense of what it would have been like to live on the island a century ago.

The theme of rebirth is a common one on Teshima with two accommodation sites in particular. A ryokan (traditional Japanese-style inn) on the island that had been closed was rescued by locals and re-opened to welcome visitors to the island. In similar fashion, a post-war orphanage that operated from 1947-2015 was re-fashioned into an earthy retreat, complete with a cool cafe.

Making your way around Teshima, you will find that a number of former residences have been turned into eateries, some of which are quite extensive. It is a combination of “old” and “new” Japan, with the spirit of community coming together to create a unique experience for everyone.