Itō is a hot spring resort city located on the eastern shore of the Izu Peninsula in Shizuoka Prefecture, Japan. In addition to its hot springs, visitors are attracted to its impressive scenery, historic buildings, museums and restaurants.
Mount Omuro dominates the skyline of Itō, where visitors can take a ride on the mountain chairlift to gain city bearings and enjoy stunning views of the coastline. Nearby, Izu Shaboten Park is a blend of botanical and zoological. The interactive pet show allows visitors to get up close with rare breeds such as the Capybara. Guests can stroll among cacti displays, explore children’s play areas or relax with a picnic in one of the picturesque garden zones. Keen adventurers will enjoy hiking or cycling in nearby valleys or a walk among the natural rugged coastline of Jogasaki Beach. Those travelling with young children should head for the Izu Teddy Bear Museum. Filled with bears from all decades, Teddy Bear Museum introduces the history and culture behind these cute and cuddly creatures. Visitors interested in sampling exquisite Japanese cuisine will adore Itō. The city has a variety of Japanese and seafood restaurants, plus several bakeries and cafes for those with a sweet tooth. Many of the hot springs are set in the grounds of lodgings throughout the city. Visitors to Itō can experience a blend of traditional therapeutic treatments and Japanese culture and hospitality.
Itō is easily reached from Tokyo Station. The JR Odoriko Express train journey takes around 1.5 hours to Itō Station. The station at Atami also offers frequent train services. Visitors keen to tour the country by train should invest in a Japan Rail Pass for the duration of their stay. Once in Itō, the bus service is reliable, a bonus as the areas of Jogasaki coast, Mount Omuro and many tourist locations are difficult to access on foot. Taxis are available from most areas.
The region which is now Itō used to comprise farming and fishing villages. It was here that William Adams constructed Japan’s first western designed sailing vessels in 1604. The second ship sailed as far as Mexico, and there are streets and historic sites relating to this achievement in the town. Today, Itō is a hot spring resort, popular with Tokyo residents and tourists alike. Many come here to relax by the charming coastline and explore the rich heritage of the area.