Iwami Ginzan World Heritage Center

Iwami Ginzan Day 2

From Okidomari to
Townscape of
Yunotsu and
Iwami Kagura

Dustin Kidd
Hannah Grace
Hannah GraceHannah's pointcommentary

After spending so much time in the mountains, yesterday, it was wonderful getting to see the seaside on this last day. But the highlight of the trip was definitely the special Kagura performance. I’d never seen Kagura live before. I was surprised how interactive it was. I actually got emotional. I’m so grateful that I got to end my wonderful trip on such a high note! These two days were a dream. I just hope I get the chance to visit again!

Iwami Ginzan Day 2


Dustin found a lookout to show me one of the major Silver export sea ports. Although it’s hard to imagine that, now that the area has grown up so green and natural. The view was beautiful!
I love the ocean, and the day we visited Okidomari the weather was just stunning. The water on the waves glistened and I got to see locals fishing in the waters that used to be major ports of international trade.

Okidomari is the port where silver from Iwami Ginzan was shipped out around the world, at least until the silver began being transported south over the mountains. There are indicators along the shore of places where ships could be anchored, and it can be a lot of fun to try and spot them yourself. When the weather is good, the view from the port is gorgeous, and you can’t beat watching the sun set into the Sea of Japan from the shore at Okidomari.

Dustin KiddDustin Kidd
Iwami Ginzan Day 2

Townscape of Yunotsu

The restaurant we ate at served a delicious rice porridge perfect for a chilly day. The steamed vegetables were steamed with hot spring water! They were so good they didn’t need any other seasoning!
Yunotsu is another lovely scenic town I could spend hours walking around. Charming shops and buildings line the streets.

Yunotsu is a lovely little onsen (hot spring) town. Iwami Ginzan silver was transported here so that it could be shipped out, and it prospered because of this. The waters here are quite hot, but they are great for a soak, and will wash your cares away. This day, we stopped by Kuranojo Café, which is right next to one of the many onsen locations in town, for lunch. Part of that lunch included vegetables steamed with water taken directly from the spring, which was something I’d never tried before. Such a great lunch, in such a wonderful venue.

Dustin KiddDustin Kidd
Iwami Ginzan Day 2

Iwami Kagura

The Ebisu performer was wonderful! He knew how to engage and play with the audience, and I could imagine how much fun this character is for children!
Even though Kagura has no translation, the performances are so skillful you get sucked into the story. It’s an artform anyone can enjoy.
I’ve never seen a performance of Orochi in person. I had no idea how intense and exciting it would be. The dragon's eyes light up, and there is smoke and special effects. My heart was beating so fast!

Iwami Kagura is a traditional performing art in western Shimane. Many local groups have their own performing troupes, and there are often events in the fall where you can have the chance to see some performances. We visited Tatsuno Gozen Shrine in Yunotsu, where you can see Iwami Kagura every Saturday night. Iwami Kagura performances are based on Japanese mythology, and the music, costumes, and action are all very vibrant and powerful, and draw you into the story right away!

Dustin KiddDustin Kidd
I’m an actress, so storytelling of all kinds, especially live stage performance, really touches my soul. It was such an honor to see the amazing performances of the Kagura dancers, singers and musicians. It was definitely the highlight of my trip!
I felt tears in my eyes at the end. I was really touched by the hard work and wonderful performances.
Iwami Ginzan Day 2
guest house


We finished our trip at a guest house with the most beautiful big rooms! The feeling was homey and traditional but still luxurious. The dinner we ordered was full of local Iwami specialties, and I went to bed stuffed with good food and great memories of my trip to Iwami Ginzan.

This was my first time to stay at Hisomu, It’s in a wonderful location, very quiet and out of the way. It’s perfect for a group of friends, because you rent the whole building. Dinner was provided by a local food truck, and they cooked our meal for us right in front of the house. And wow, was it filling! The room I stayed in was comfortable, and I fell right asleep. I woke up early the next morning and took a walk down to the seashore, which was just down the road. I was a great scene to wake up to.

Dustin KiddDustin Kidd