The Amami Museum is dedicated to telling the story of Amami‘s cultural and natural history. The museum, which has recently installed a new and modern exhibition, has a very well developed display of artifacts and information posters. The new exhibit explains in details the complex history of the Amami islands and how people used to live their lives in harmony with nature on this subtropical island. It is an important stop in Amami, if you want to understand the culture and landscapes you encounter during your visit.
The Amami islands have been inhabited for thousands of years. A unique culture has developed here, like on many of the other isolated islands in the area. Some of the unique cultural features on Amami Oshima are the two dialects of the Amami language, a language which is related to the other Ryukyu languages of the region. One dialect is even considered endangered by UNESCO. The museum introduces those unique dialects, along with other unique cultural features found on the island on the first floor.
On the second floor, Amami’s complex history and interesting culture is presented. Until 1611 Amami Oshima was part of the Ryukyu Kingdom. In 1611 the island was invaded and later annexed by the Tokugawa shogunate. During the following centuries, a large industry of sugar cane farming developed on the island. The islanders were being forced to farm, and pay high taxes, resulting in a poor and deprived existence for many of the locals. During the second world war, the Americans occupied the island. The tough conditions and how the people survived and adapted over time is explained in this section of the museum.
The third floor introduces Amami’s rich nature. The islands are very rich on nature, and have a lot of unique plant and animal life. There are large mangroves, coral reefs and the largest evergreen broad-leafed forest in Japan. This entire floor of the museum is dedicated to educating visitors on the special plants and animals which live in Amami.
Planning your visit
|Hours||9:00 – 17:00|
|Entrance fee||Adult: ¥310|
|Website||Amami City Museum official website|
|Hotels||The Scene Amami ☆☆☆☆|
Hotel New Amami ☆☆☆
West Court Hotel Amami ☆☆
Golden Mile Hostel ☆☆
By car: Amami Museum is located on the western side of Naze Port, about 2km out of the central city. There is a large, free parking lot on the side of the museum. A rental car is the most convenient means of transportation in Amami Oshima.
By bus: The nearest bus stop is Nagahama Bus Stop (長浜). The bus which stops here is fairly frequent, and stops in many places in down town Naze, amongst those places in front of the city hall (市役所前) and near the West Court Hotel. For a map of the bus stops, check the Shima Bus website linked below.
? Shima Bus official website (japanese)
The bus lines which stop near the museum are
- 平田町 ⇔ こしゅく第１公園
- 大熊 ⇔ こしゅく第１公園
Suggested Hotels in Amami
|The Scene Amami|
|Nest at Amami Beach Villas|
|Holly Camp Airstream|