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Naruto Whirlpools (鳴門の渦潮: Naruto-no-uzushio)

The Naruto whirlpools (鳴門の渦潮, Naruto-no-Uzushio) occur in the Naruto Strait whose width is about 1.3 km between Naruto in Tokushima and Awaji Island in Hyogo.
The tide moves large volumes of water into the Seto Inland Sea twice a day, and also removes large volumes of water twice a day. It can reach a depth of 2m and a width of 20m, depending on the condition. The speed of the whirlpools is usually 13-15km/h, but in spring and autumn when it’s at spring tide, it may reach up to 20km/h.
Especially from the late March to the late April, it’s the best season to watch it.
The speed of the whirlpools in Naruto is fastest in Japan and the current Naruto Whirlpools is the fourth fastest in the world.
Naruto Wirlpools

Fast Fact - Naruto Wirlpools

The whirlpools occur about every 6 hours. The best timing to watch it is for about one and a half hour (neap tide) or about 2 hours (spring tide) between the high tide or the low tide.
It is very important to check the whirlpool schedule before you go. Check it at the link below. However, it’s written in Japanese. Check some helpful Japanese words below together.

To observe the whirlpools, there are some ways: from sightseeing boat; from the walkway with the glass window set in the floor of Uzu-no-michi; from observatories of nearby parks or hills.
There are some types of sightseeing boats: large sized-boat; medium sized-boat with underwater windows; small sized-boat which can make you feel as if you were being swallowed by the whirlpools.

To pilgrims, there is No. 1 temple, Rozen-ji, which is the start and the end of the Shikoku henro (pilgrimage) in Naruto city. Visit the Naruto Whirlpools before or after your pilgrimage.

The Whirlpool Schedule

【Time in read】Spring tide -- the best time for watching the whirlpools
【Time in blue】Between spring tide and neap tide
【Time in black】Neap tide
翌月へ: to the next month
前月へ: to the previous month
月: Monday
火: Tuesday
水: Wednesday
木: Thursday
金: Friday
土: Saturday
日: Sunday

年: year
月: month

満潮: high tide
干潮: low tide

Sightseeing Boat

Naruto Kanko-kisen (鳴門観光汽船) -- No closing dates
(Naruto-kameura-kanko-ko, Naruto-koen, Naruto town, TEL: 088-687-0101)
Naruto -kanko-kisen operates large sized-boats (Wonder Naruto; 30min ride; every 40 min from 9:00-16:20; Adult ¥1530, Child ¥770) and medium sized boats with underwater windows (Aqua Eddy; 25min ride; every 30 min from 9:15-16:15; Adult ¥2200, Child ¥1100). It leaves from the Kameura-kanko-ko pier (亀浦観光港) in Naruto-koen park (鳴門公園).
A reservation for Aqua Eddy in advance is required. You can make a reservation at (all are written in Japanese. Check the sample below)

乗船希望日: Departure date; 年 (year)   月 (month)  日(day)
乗船希望時間: Desired time; *choose the time when you want to aboard
乗船人数: How many people
代表者ご氏名またはグループ名: Your group name or your name
ご連絡先電話番号: Your phone number (ground phone number, if you have) *Put one-byte characters
携帯電話番号: Your mobile phone number *Put one-byte characters
メールアドレス: Your E-mail address

*Discount combination ticket -- see Uzu-no-michi (渦の道)

Uzushio-kisen (うずしお汽船) -- No closing dates
(Kameura-gyoko, Naruto-koen, Naruto town, TEL: 088-687-0613)
Uzushio-kisen operates small high-speed boats. “Uzushio” leaves every 30 minutes from 8:30 to16:30 from the Kameoga-gyoko (亀浦漁港) fishing port in Naruto-koen park.
20 minute ride; Adult ¥1500, Child ¥750
*Discount combination ticket -- see Uzu-no-michi (渦の道)

Sights in Naruto

Uzu-no-michi (渦の道)
(In Naruto-koen park, Naruto town, Naruto city; TEL: 088-683-6262 )
Uzu-no-michi (渦の道) is a walkway under the O-Naruto bridge above the whirlpools with glass windows set on the floor to see through the whirlpools.
It is thrilling to see the whirlpools 45 meters below from the window floor!
The walkway has a panoramic view of the Naruto Strait and there is also an observatory deck on the top of the building.

Open Hour
Summer (Mat-Sep): 9:00-18:00 *The last entry is by 17:30
Golden Week (Check Holiday Page) and July 20 to August 31
: 8:00-19:00 *The last entry is by 18:30
Winter (Oct-Feb): 9:00-17:00 *The last entry is by 16:30
Admission: Adult ¥500, Junior High and High school student: ¥400, Elementary school student: ¥250

Discount combination ticket
With Onaruto Bridge Museum Eddy (徳島県立大鳴門橋架橋記念館エディ ): ¥1,100 → ¥880
With Naruto-kanko-kisen boat tour (鳴門観光汽船): ¥2,030 → ¥1,800
with Uzushio-kisen boat tour (うずしお汽船): ¥2,000 → ¥1,750
With Eska Hill (エスカヒル鳴門): ¥800 → ¥600
With German House (鳴門市ドイツ館): ¥900 → ¥720
Closing date: The second Monday of Mar, Jun, Sep, Dec.

Onaruto Bridge Museum Eddy (No closing date)
Open Hours: 9:00 to 17:00 (entry until 16:30)
Adult ¥600, Junior High and High school student: ¥400, Elementary school student: ¥250
*Discount combination ticket -- see Uzu-no-michi (渦の道)

Eska Hill Naruto (エスカヒル鳴門)
(In Naruto-koen park, Naruto town, Naruto city; TEL: 088-687-0222)
There is an observatory room on the Eska Hill which is accessible via a 68 meter long escalator (No closing date; 8:30-20:00; Adult ¥300 Child ¥100): the elevation is 34m. It is in front of the first parking lot (第一駐車場).
*Discount combination ticket -- see Uzu-no-michi (渦の道)

Senjojiki Observatory (千畳敷展望台)
It has the best views of the swirling water.

Tea garden observatory (お茶園展望台, Ocha-en tenbo-dai)
Quiet observatory.

Other sights in Naruto

Otsuka National Art Museum (大塚国際美術館)
(In the Naruto park; TEL: 088-687-3737)
It has over 1000 reproduced western art.
Open: 9:30-17:00
Closed: Monday
Admission: Adult ¥3150 University student ¥2100 Under High school student ¥520

German House (鳴門市ドイツ館)
The site of a World War I POW camp for German soldiers. The stone bridges and cenotaph built by the prisoners are on display, along with documents that give us a glimpse of life during those times. The German prisoners were free to communicate with the local people, and much German culture remains in the area to this day. The present-day German House was built in 1993.
Open: 9:30-16:30
Closed: The fourth Monday every month
Admission: Adult ¥400 Child ¥100
*Discount combination ticket -- see Uzu-no-michi (渦の道)

Access to Naruto Wirlpools

From JR Tokushima station or JR Naruto station
Take JR Naruto line (JR鳴門線), get off at Naruto station (鳴門駅), take a Naruto city bus (鳴門市営バス) bound for Naruto-koen (鳴門公園): about 25min; ¥300
Take a Tokushima bus (徳島バス) bound for Naruto-koen (鳴門公園): about 60min; ¥690

By plane
Tokyo-Tokushima: JAL; 1h10m
Fukuoka-Tokushima: JAC 1h15m
Nagoya-Tokushima: ANA 1h
Sapporo-Tokushima: JAL 2h (only in summer)
*From the Tokushima Awaodori Airport, take a bus to Naruto-koen-mae. (¥430)

By bus
To Naruto-koen-guchi
Some bus companies operate long distance buses: From Awaji Tsuna port (淡路津名港; Awaji Kotsu; 1h; ¥1350); From Osaka (大阪; JR Shikoku bus Tokushima bus, other 8 companies; 1h50m; ¥3150); From Sannomiya (三宮; 1h30m; ¥2750); From Kobe kosokumaiko (神戸高速舞子; 50m; ¥2300); From Kyoto (京都; 2h20m; ¥3650)
To Otsuka National Art Museum (大塚国際美術館前)
From Osaka: Honshikoku-kaikyo bus and JR West bus; 2h50m; ¥3150

*Be warned that the Naruto-koen-guchi bus stop is only for arrival.
If you want to go back for Osaka, Kyoto or Kobe by highway bus, take a local bus at Naruto-koen (鳴門公園), get off at Kyotei-mae (競艇場前; run by Naruto city bus (鳴門市営バス)) or at Konaruto-kyo (小鳴門橋; run by Tokushima bus) -- about 20 minutes, and 5 minute walk to the highway bus stop “Kosoku-Naruto (高速鳴門)”.

By car
Approximately 5 minutes from the Kobe Awaji Naruto Highway Naruto-kita IC (鳴門北IC)

By ferry
Wakayama-Tokushima: Nankai Ferry (南海フェリー); 0120-73-2156
Tokyo (Ariake)-Tokushima (Tsuda)- Kita-Kyushu (Shin-moji): Ocean Tokyu Ferry (オーシャン東九フェリー); 03-5148-0109

To Pilgrims
If you want to go to the Naruto park before/after your pilgrimage, of course, you can use a public transport to get there, but it’s about 20km from the park to the No.1 temple, Ryozen-ji. You even can walk there. You had been walking or you are going to walk about 1400km all the way, anyway.

Where do you want to go in Shikoku?

Shikoku Henro (Shikoku Pilgrimage)

How to get to and around Tokushima

From Kansai international airport
Shinkansen route
Japan Railways
Highway bus route

Subway lines in Kansai
Buses in Shikokui

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