Wakayama: Japan's Spiritual Heartland
From the Kumano Sanzan route to the mountain temples of Koyasan
From the Kumano Sanzan route to the
the mountain temples of Koyasan

Matsue and the Izumo Region

A hidden time capsule of feudal Japan

Welcome to Matsue

Matsue is the capital of Shimane Prefecture in west Japan, and is the centre of the culturally significant Izumo region. Matsue is nestled between the Sea of Japan and two of Japan’s largest lakes, Lake Shinji and Nakaumi. This plus its extensive network of moats and canals gave it the nickname “City of Water”. The cultural centre of the city is the castle town surrounding Matsue Castle and, like the castle itself, many buildings in the area remain unchanged from their 400-year-old appearance.

As a designated International City of Culture and Tourism, the city is very welcoming of international tourists with significant discounts, in most cases reaching 50%.

The area is also filled with internationally renowned Shinto shrines, Japanese gardens and hot springs that make for a great, traditional Japanese experience.

The Izumo region is also the stage of many of Japan’s most popular and ancient legends.

Okinawa Nagasaki Fukuoka Saga Kumamoto Kagoshima Miyazaki Oita Ehime Kochi Tokushima Kagawa Yamaguchi Hiroshima Okayama Tottori Shimane Hyogo Kyoto Osaka Wakayama Nara Shiga Mie Fukui Ishikawa Toyama Gifu Aichi Nagano Shizuoka Niigata Yamanashi Kanagawa Tokyo Saitama Gunma Tochigi Chiba Ibaraki Fukushima Miyagi Yamagata Iwate Akita Aomori Hokkaido

Rent a Yukata as you visit one of Japan’s oldest and most important shrines, explore the perfectly maintained Matsue Castle and ride around its moats in Edo Period-inspired sightseeing boats, stop for a quick hot spring bath or full overnight stay at one of many traditional Japanese inns, or casually enjoy traditional tea ceremonies and some of Japan’s freshest and most delicious sea food. The surprising contrast between continuing traditional culture and complete openness and warmth toward international visitors makes Matsue and the Izumo region one of the best places to visit in Japan, come see for yourself.

Visit Matsue

Matsue Castle

Matsue Adventures in Shimane

Enjoy the Edo Period in Modern Matsue

Matsue Castle and the castle town

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Getting to Matsue: The One Coin Bus

Go between Matsue and Hiroshima for only ¥500!

If you find yourself in Hiroshima it would be a shame to not take this chance to visit Matsue and the surrounding area for only 500 yen.

Matsue sits 170 km north of Hiroshima and the castle town is full of well-preserved memories of ancient Japan and its culture.

About service run by Ichibata bus:

  • 3 hour journey (highway express)
  • Special tourist price of ¥500
  • Departs JR Hiroshima Shinkansen station & Hiroshima Bus Centre.
View PDF Guide Download PDF (2.3 MB)


This discount is offered on a limited basis with annual renewal. For the latest, please check the official website.

Last updated: Feb 15, 2019