The Oki Islands are situated between 40 to 80 kilometers north of the coast of Honshū.
The largest and inhabited islands are:
- Dōgo (島後), main island, about 243 km2, northeast off the subgroup of the so-called Dōuzen Islands(島前) with
- Chiburi-shima (知夫里島), about 14 km2
- Nakano-shima (中ノ島), about 33 km2
- Nishino-shima (西ノ島), about 56 km2
The population is about 24,500 inhabitants spread over the four administrative areas of:
- Okinoshima-chō (Okinoshima-town), includes all of Dōgo Island and close by islets as Okina-shima, Obana-shima, Tsuname-shima, Shijiki-jima and Ombe-shima, population about 17.000, Japan considers the disputed Liancourt Rocks to be a part of Okinoshima.
- Chibu-mura (Chibu-village), includes all of Chiburi-shima and close by islets as Okaga-shima, Shimazu-jima, Asa-shima and Kami-shima, population about 800.
- Ama-chō (Ama-town), includes all of Nakano-shima and close-by islets as Omori-jima and Matsu-shima, population about 2,600.
- Nishinoshima-chō (Nishinoshima-town), includes all of Nishino-shima and close-by islets as Hoshikami-jima, Futamata-jima and O-kazuro-shima, population about 3,900.
- Summers (June–August) average around 30 degrees Celsius plus humidity. There usually is a strong sea breeze. The sea waves during the summer rarely exceed 2 meters.
- Autumn (September–November) is temperate. It begins to rain more often and the waves begin to grow. The Rainbow ferry stops operating in November.
- Winters (December to the end of February) are relatively mild. Temperatures rarely drop below freezing. Also, due to the warming influence of the sea, Oki does not get much snow. What snow there is does not lie for long because the ground is not cold enough. The ferry is more likely to be canceled due to high waves, but it is still possible to leave the island.
- Spring (March–May) is generally regarded as the best season. There are many opportunities for viewing cherry blossoms on Oki during the spring. The Rainbow starts running in March.
Under the Edo period the Tokugawa family took control over the islands and they were put under the direct control of the Shogun through a governor. Later they became part of the Matsue Domain. During that time the islands were a stopover point for trading boats traveling to and from Asia.
After the Meiji Restoration which introduced a succession of reforms to restructure the Japanese state, the islands first became part of the Tottori Prefecture in 1871 and were transferred to the Shimane Prefecture in 1881.
- The Oki Islands
- Map of the Oki Islands
- View of the Oki Islands
- Japan National Tourist Organization site
- The National Park
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