List of islands of Japan

Japan is an archipelago of 6,852 islands, of which approximately 260 are inhabited.[1][2] Japan is the largest island country in East Asia and the fourth largest in the world.[3]

Japanese archipelago islands outlined

Main islands

The main islands of Japan

The four main islands of Japan are:[4][5]

  • Hokkaido - the northernmost and second largest main island.
  • Honshu - the largest and most populous island with the capital Tokyo.
  • Kyushu - the third largest main island and nearest to the Asian continent.
  • Shikoku - the smallest main island, it is between Honshu and Kyushu.

Hokkaido prefecture

Islands of Honshu in the Sea of Japan

  • Awashima Island, Niigata
  • Kanmurijima
  • Kutsujima, Kyoto
  • Mitsukejima
  • Nanatsujima archipelago
  • Notojima
  • Oki Islands (Oki Islands)[7]
    • Dōgo
    • Nakanoshima
    • Nishinoshima
    • Chiburijima
  • Oomijima
  • Sado[8]
  • Takashima, Shimane
  • Tobishima (Yamagata)
    • Oshakujima
  • Tsunoshima
  • Umashima, Shimane

Islands in Tokyo Bay

Islands in Osaka Bay

Islands in Ise Bay

Islands in Mutsu Bay

  • Ōshima
  • Taijima

Nanpō Islands (Nanpō Shotō)

Izu Islands
Ogasawara Islands

Other Japanese islands

Islands around Kyushu

Most of these are located in the East China Sea.

Islands around Shikoku

  • Kuro-shima (Ehime)
  • Nii Ōshima

Ryukyu Islands (Nansei-shotō)

Ryukyu Islands

Satsunan Islands

The northern half is administratively part of Kagoshima Prefecture and Kyushu.

Ōsumi Islands

The North-Eastern Group:

The North-Western Group:

Tokara Islands

The Shichi-tō:

Amami Islands

Ryukyu Islands (Ryūkyū-shotō)

The Southern Half, Okinawa Prefecture

Okinawa Islands

The Central Group or Ryukyu proper:

Sakishima Islands

Also known as the Further Isles:

Seto Inland Sea islands

Seto Inland Sea
  • Kasaoka Islands
    • Takashima Island (Okayama) 高島 (岡山県笠岡市)
    • Shiraishi Island
    • Kitagi Island, 北木島
    • Obishi Island, 大飛島
    • Kobi Island, 小飛島
    • Manabeshima, 真鍋島
    • Mushima Island (Okayama), 六島 (岡山県)
  • Shiwaku Islands
  • Awaji[8]
  • Etajima
  • Kurahashi-jima
  • Inujima
  • Itsukushima (popularly known as "Miyajima")
  • Shōdoshima
  • Naoshima Islands
  • Suō-Ōshima, Yamaguchi
  • Himeshima, Ōita
  • Aoshima, Ehime
  • Hashira Island
  • Okamura Island
  • Ōshima (Ehime)
  • Mukaishima Island, Hiroshima
  • Ōmishima Island, Ehime
  • Ōkunoshima (often called "Rabbit Island")

Islands in lakes

  • Daikon-island
  • Bentenjima in Lake Tōya
  • Bentenjima in Lake Hamana

Other artificial islands

Claims but does not control

Kuril islands and the Northern Territories

The Northern Territories

There are four disputed Kuril Islands that are controlled by Russia and claimed by Japan. These islands are called the Chishima Islands.[17]

  • Iturup - Etorofu (択捉島, Etorofu-tō)
  • Kunashir - Kunashiri (国後島, Kunashiri-tō)
  • Shikotan - Shikotan (色丹島, Shikotan-tō)
  • Habomai Islands - Habomai (歯舞群島, Habomai-guntō)



Largest islands of Japan

These are the 50 largest islands of Japan. It excludes the disputed Kuril islands known as the northern territories.

RankIsland nameArea
(sq mi)
Island group
5Okinawa Island1,207466Ryukyu Islands
6Sado Island855.26330.22
7Amami Ōshima712.35275.04Amami Islands
8Tsushima Island708.7273.6
9Awaji Island592.17228.64Seto Inland Sea islands
10Shimoshima Island, Amakusa574.01221.63
11Yakushima504.88194.94Ōsumi Islands
12Tanegashima444.99171.81Ōsumi Islands
13Fukue Island326.43126.04Gotō Islands
14Iriomote Island289.27111.69
15Tokunoshima247.895.7Amami Islands
16Dōgojima241.5893.27Oki Islands
17Kamishima Island, Amakusa225.3287.00Amakusa islands
18Ishigaki Island222.585.9
19Rishiri Island18371
20Nakadōri Island168.3465.00Gotō Islands
21Hirado Island163.4263.10
24Okushiri Island142.9755.20
25Iki Island138.4653.46
27Okinoerabujima93.6336.15Amami Islands
29Izu Ōshima91.0635.16Izu Islands
30Nagashima Island, Kagoshima90.6234.99
31Rebun Island8031
32Kakeromajima77.3929.88Amami Islands
35Ōmishima Island, Ehime66.1225.53
37Kume Island59.1122.82Okinawa Islands
38Kikaijima56.9321.98Amami Islands
43Ōshima (Ehime)41.8716.17
48Nakanoshima (in Kagoshima)34.4713.31Tokara Islands
49Hario Island33.1612.80
50Nakanoshima (in Shimane)32.2112.44Oki Islands

See also


  1. Look Japan, Vol. 43, Issues 493-504, p. 35; retrieved 2013-3-2.
  2. "離島とは(島の基礎知識)" (in Japanese). Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism. Archived from the original (website) on November 13, 2007. Retrieved 3 October 2018.
  3. "Island Countries Of The World". Archived from the original on 2017-12-07. Retrieved 2019-08-10.
  4. "離島とは(島の基礎知識) (what is a remote island?)". MLIT (Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism) (in Japanese). Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism. 22 August 2015. Archived from the original (website) on 2007-11-13. Retrieved 9 August 2019. MILT classification 6,852 islands(main islands: 5 islands, remote islands: 6,847 islands)
  5. Imperial Japanese Commission to the Louisiana Purchase Exposition. (1903). Japan in the Beginning of the 20th century (Haruki Yamawaki, editor), p. 2.
  6. Nussbaum, Louis-Frédéric. (2005). "Rishiri-tō" in Japan Encyclopedia, p. 791.
  7. Ponsonby-Fane, Richard. (1962). Sovereign and Subject, p. 332.
  8. Ponsonby-Fane, p. 331.
  9. Nussbaum, "Izu Shotō" at p. 412.
  10. Gotoh, H. et al. (2010). "Infrastructure Maintenance and Disaster Prevention Measures on Isolated Islands: the Case of the Izu Islands near Tokyo" in Island Sustainability (Favro, S., editor), p. 187.
  11. Nussbaum, p. 412; Ponsonby-Fane, p. 332.
  12. Nussbaum, "Ōshima" at p. 761.
  13. Nussbaum, "Torishima" at p. 987.
  14. Nussbaum, "Ogasawara Guntō" at p. 737.
  15. Nussbaum, "Hashima" at p. 294.
  16. "Io-Torishima". Global Volcanism Program. Smithsonian Institution. Retrieved 2022-03-16.
  17. Imperial Japanese Commission, p. 3.
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