Lighthouses of Japan: Northern Mie Prefecture

This page lists lighthouses of the northern part of the Japanese prefecture of Mie, which faces east on Ise Bay. It also includes the lighthouses of Toba City, at the entrance to the bay. Toba occupies a rugged and scenic peninsula together with several islands in the mouth of the bay. North of Toba, the coast is mostly urban and industrial.

In Japanese, the word for a lighthouse is tōdai or toudai (灯台). The words saki and misaki are for capes and headlands, shima (also spelled sima or jima) is an island, wan is a bay, and is a harbor. Lighthouses in Japan are operated and maintained by the Japanese Coast Guard's Maritime Safety Agency. On Honshū there is usually one Coast Guard Section Office in each prefecture, sometimes two; in Mie, because of its lengthy coastline, there are three: at Yokkaichi, Toba, and Owase. The Yokkaichi office maintains the lighthouses of Yokkaichi, Suzuka, and Tsu; the remaining lighthouses on this page are maintained by the Toba office.

ARLHS numbers are from the ARLHS World List of Lights. JCG numbers are the Japanese Coast Guard's light list numbers. Admiralty numbers are from volume M of the Admiralty List of Lights & Fog Signals. U.S. NGA List numbers are from Publication 112.

General Sources
Lighthouses in Japan - Mie
A comprehensive site, although almost entirely in Japanese.
Lighthouse-Japan.com - Mie
This site has excellent photos for many lighthouses in Mie.
Lighthouses (Mie Prefecture)
Another comprehensive site for lighthouse photos.
Form of a Lighthouse - Mie
Another site with many photos of Japanese lighthouses.
Kiso's Lighthouses
This site has many excellent photos of Japanese lighthouses. Kiso's page for Honshū-Pacific Ocean has many of the photos referenced on this page.
Misty's Japanese Lighthouse Tour - Mie
This site has photos and a few notes in English for lighthouses in all parts of the country.
Lighthouses in Mie Prefecture
Photos available from Wikimedia.
Key Lighthouses
Photos and historical information (in Japanese) posted by the Toba Coast Guard Office.
The Famous Fifty Lighthouses
Photos of the lighthouses voted most famous in Japan, posted by the Eighth Coast Guard Region. Two of the fifty (Kami Shima and Suga Shima) stand in the area covered by this page.
Richard Henry Brunton
Wikipedia article on the Scottish engineer who built most of Japan's oldest lighthouses, including the surviving Sugashima Light and the first lighthouse at Anori Saki.
Japan: Modern Lighthouses
Historic postcard views posted by Michel Forand.
Lighthouse Database of Japan
A useful listing of all the JCG lights, with their locations, posted by the Weather and Marine Company, Ltd.

Kamijima Light
Kami Shima (Kamijima) Light, Ise Wan, August 2006
Wikimedia Creative Commons photo by N yotarou's father

Ise Bay Lighthouses

Yokkaichi City Lighthouses
Note: The industrial city of Yokkaichi is located at the northwest corner of Ise Bay, just west of Nagoya.
* Yokkaichi Inner Basin Breakwater
1937. Inactive since 2009. 7 m (23 ft) concrete post attached to a square 1-story concrete equipment shelter. Entire lighthouse is white. Keishi Mizukami has a closeup photo, and Google has a satellite view. Surrounded by a vastly expanded harbor, this light no longer has any navigational value; it was discontinued at the end of November 2009. Located at the end of a short breakwater at the entrance to the historic inner basin of Yokkaichi harbor. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS JPN-1874; JCG-2710; ex-Admiralty M6104; ex-NGA 6188.
Yokkaichi East Breakwater North Head
1981. Active; focal plane 19 m (62 ft); green light, 3 s on, 3 s off. 16 m (52 ft) round concrete tower with lantern and gallery. Google has a satellite view. Prior to 1920, the original Yokkaichi Light, a 12 m (39 ft) square concrete tower, was somewhere near this location. Located at the north end of the detached breakwater protecting the harbor of Yokkaichi, an industrial port on the west side of Ise Bay about 30 km (20 mi) southwest of Nagoya. Accessible only by boat. Site and tower closed. ARLHS JPN-1876; JCG-2704; Admiralty M6097.6; NGA 6184.
Yokkaichi East Breakwater South Head
1965. Active; focal plane 15 m (49 ft); red light, 3 s on, 3 s off. 13 m (43 ft) round cylindrical metal tower with gallery, painted red. Google has an indistinct satellite view. Located at the south end of the detached breakwater protecting the harbor of Yokkaichi. Accessible only by boat. Site and tower closed. ARLHS JPN-1875; JCG-2709; Admiralty M6099; NGA 6180.
Yokkaichi Kō (South Breakwater)
1926. Active; focal plane 20 m (66 ft); green light occulting three times every 13 s. 20 m (66 ft) round concrete tower with lantern and gallery, painted white. A Coast Guard photo is at right, and Google has a satellite view. Land has been filled south of the breakwater, so the lighthouse now stands on a right-angle cape formed by this fill. Site status unknown. ARLHS JPN-1877; JCG-2708; Admiralty M6098; NGA 6176.
* Isozu South Breakwater
1961. Active; focal plane 14 m (46 ft); green light, 3 s on, 3 s off. 10 m (33 ft) round cylindrical fiberglass tower with gallery. Entire lighthouse is white. The Coast Guard has a photo on a page appealing for an end to graffiti on the lighthouse, and Google has a satellite view. Located at the end of the south breakwater at Isozu Kō, an industrial harbor on the south side of Yokkaichi. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. JCG-2723; Admiralty M6096; NGA 6192.
Yokkaichi East Breakwater North Head Light
Yokkaichi Kō Light, Yokkaichi, November 2008
Japanese Coast Guard Yokkaichi Office photo

Suzuka City Lighthouses
Note: Located just to the south of Yokkaichi on the west side of Ise Bay, Suzuka is an industrial city noted for its Sharp electronics and Honda automotive factories.
* Suzuka Kō
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 14 m (46 ft); continuous green light with two more intense flashes every 8 s. 9.5 m (31 ft) concrete post attached to a square 1-story concrete equipment shelter. Entire lighthouse is white. A photo is available (first lighthouse on the page), and Bing has a satellite view. Located at the end of the short south (main) breakwater of the fishing port in Suzuka. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS JPN-1712; JCG-2724; Admiralty M6095; NGA 6196.
* Chiyosaki (Chiiyozaki) Kō
1951. Active; focal plane 13 m (43 ft); green light, 3 s on, 3 s off. 10 m (33 ft) concrete tower; the light is atop an x-shaped bracket mounted on a square 1-story concrete equipment shelter. Entire lighthouse is white. A Coast Guard photo is at right, another photo is available (fourth lighthouse on the page), the Coast Guard also has a page with a small photo, and Bing has a satellite view. Located at the end of the south (main) breakwater of Chiyosaki in Suzuka. According to the Japanese Aids to Navigation Association, this lighthouse was "designed with an image of Russia," recalling a Russian ship wrecked in Ise Bay in the late 18th century. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS JPN-1803; JCG-2726; Admiralty M6094; NGA 6204.
* Shiroko (Siroko) South Breakwater
1949. Active; focal plane 9 m (30 ft); green light occulting twice every 6 s. 9 m (30 ft) octagonal concrete post attached to a square 1-story concrete equipment shelter. Entire lighthouse is white. Another photo is available (second lighthouse on the page), the Coast Guard has a page with a small photo, and Google has a satellite view. Located at the end of the original south breakwater of Shiroko. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS JPN-1854; JCG-2727; Admiralty M6093; NGA 6208.
Shiroko (Siroko) Outer Breakwater North Head
1996. Active; focal plane 13 m (43 ft); green flash every 3 s. 9.5 m (31 ft) concrete post rising from a square 1-story concrete equipment shelter. Entire lighthouse is white. Google has a satellite view. Located at the end of a detached breakwater at the southern end of Shiroko harbor. Accessible only by boat, but there is a good view from shore. ARLHS JPN-1853; JCG-2727.2; Admiralty M6093.6; NGA 6209.
Chiyosaki Light
Chiyosaki Kō Light, Suzuka
Japanese Coast Guard photo
Shiroko (Siroko) Outer Breakwater South Head
1989. Active; focal plane 13 m (43 ft); red flash every 3 s. 9.5 m (31 ft) concrete post rising from a square 1-story concrete equipment shelter. Entire lighthouse is red. A photo is available, and Google has a satellite view. Located at the end of a detached breakwater at the southern end of Shiroko harbor. Accessible only by boat, but there is a good view from shore. ARLHS JPN-1854; JCG-2727.3; Admiralty M6093.5; NGA 6210.

Tsu City Lighthouses
Note: Tsu, the capital of Mie Prefecture, is a port on the central west coast of Ise Bay.
* Nie Saki (Tsu) (2)
1922 (station established 1885). Active; focal plane 16 m (52 ft); white light, 4 s on, 4 s off. 8 m (26 ft) square pyramidal concrete tower with gallery mounted on a square tapered stone base; the lantern has been removed. Lighthouse painted white. A closeup and another photo are available, Forand has a historic postcard view, and Google has a satellite view. This light stands on the base of the 1885 wooden lighthouse. Located on the north side of the entrance to the traditional Tsumatsusaka port in Tsu. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS JPN-1868; JCG-2730; Admiralty M6083; NGA 6216.
* Tsu South Breakwater
1988. Active; focal plane 12 m (39 ft); red flash every 3 s. 9 m (30 ft) tapered square masonry tower, painted red. This unusual lighthouse is designed to resemble a Japanese paper-covered lamp stand. A Coast Guard photo is at right, the Coast Guard also has a page for the light, a 2010 photo is available, and Google has a satellite view. Located at the end of the south breakwater of Tsu Kō. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS JPN-1866; JCG-2730.3; Admiralty M6085; NGA 6222.
Iguratsu (Iguratu, Tuko Iguratsu, Karasu Kō)
1969. Active; focal plane 18 m (59 ft); green light occulting twice every 6 s. 16 m (52 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower with lantern and gallery. Entire lighthouse is white. Bing has a distant satellite view. Located at the end of the breakwater sheltering a harbor of the JFE Corporation, a steel works, about 35 km (22 mi) south of Yokkaichi. Site and tower closed. ARLHS JPN-1869; JCG-2731; Admiralty M6082; NGA 6224.

Taki District Lighthouse
* Ōyodo (Oizu) Kō
1962. Active; focal plane 11 m (36 ft); red light, 3 s on, 3 s off. 8 m (26 ft) octagonal concrete post, attached to a square 1-story concrete equipment shelter. Entire lighthouse is red. Bing has a satellite view. Located at the end of the north breakwater of Ōyodo harbor in Meiwa, a town between Tsu and Toba on the southwest coast of Ise Bay. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS JPN-1849; JCG-2740; Admiralty M6074; NGA 6252.
Tsu Kō South Breakwater Light
Tsu Kō South Breakwater Light, Tsu
Japanese Coast Guard photo

Ise City Lighthouse
* Toyokita Kō
Date unknown. Active; focal plane about 11 m (36 ft); two red flashes every 6 s. 8 m (26 ft) concrete post attached to a square 1-story concrete equipment shelter. Entire lighthouse is red. A photo is available, there's a second photo (4/5 the way down the page). Bing has an indistinct satellite view. Located at the end of a breakwater on the west side of the Tokida River, the harbor for the Toyokita fishing port. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. JCG-2742; NGA 6255.

Kami Shima and Suga Shima Shima Lighthouses
Note: Kami Shima and Suga Shima are islands east of Toba in the entrance to Ise Bay; both of them are administered by Toba City. The islands are popular resort destinations, with ferry service frequently from Toba.
* Kami Shima (2)
1968 (station established 1910). Active; focal plane 114 m (374 ft); three white flashes every 30 s; in addition a continuous white spotlight (JCG-2505) illuminates nearby reefs. 11 m (36 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower with lantern and gallery, centered on a 1-story square concrete equipment building. 4th order Fresnel lens in use. Entire lighthouse covered with white ceramic tile. A photo is at the top of this page, Lighthouse-Japan.com has closeup photos, the Toba Coast Guard Office has a page with good photos, the Eighth Region has an aerial photo in the Famous Fifty collection, and Google has a satellite view. The present light replaced a cast iron tower. Kami Shima is an island in the center of the entrance to Ise Bay, so this lighthouse functions as the landfall light for the bay. Located on the high ridge at the east end of the island. Ferry transportation to the island is available from Toba, and according to the Coast Guard it is 30 minute (steeply uphill!) walk to the light station. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS JPN-215; JCG-2504; Admiralty M6051; NGA 5824.
* Kami Shima Kō
1978. Active; focal plane 12 m (39 ft); green light, 2 s on, 2 s off. 8.5 m (28 ft) round hourglass-shaped concrete tower. Entire lighthouse is white. Several good photos are available, and Google has a satellite view. Located at the end of the main breakwater of Kami Shima. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS JPN-1818; JCG-2506; Admiralty M6051.3; NGA 5832.
* Suga Shima (2)
1873 (Richard Henry Brunton). Active; focal plane 55 m (180 ft); white flash every 4 s. 10 m (33 ft) round old-style brick tower with lantern and gallery, painted white. The original 1-story brick keeper's house has been dismantled and rebuilt at Meiji Mura (Meiji Village), a privately-owned historic theme park in Inuyama, about 20 km (13 mi) north of Nagoya. The Toba Coast Guard office has a page with the photo at right, Lighthouse-Japan.com has a page of photos, Misty's Tour has another photo, another photo is available, and Google has a distant satellite view. This venerable light was the first brick Western-style lighthouse built in Japan. It replaced a wooden Edo-era lighthouse. A modern LED light was installed in October 2013. Suga Shima is an island, 4 km (2.5 mi) long, obstructing the western entrance to Ise Bay. The island is accessible by ferry from Toba. Located at the northeastern tip of the island, said to be a 20 minute walk from the ferry. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS JPN-596; JCG-2750; Admiralty M6048; NGA 6328.
* Sugashima North Breakwater
1985. Active; focal plane 13 m (43 ft); two green flashes every 6 s. 9.5 m (31 ft) post rising from a round 1-story concrete equipment room. Entire lighthouse is white. Google has a distant satellite view. Located at the end of the north breakwater at the harbor on Suga Shima. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS JPN-1859; JCG-2750.5; Admiralty M6048.5; NGA 6320.

Suga Shima Light, Ise Wan
Japanese Coast Guard Toba Office photo
* Sugashima South Breakwater
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 12 m (39 ft); green light, 3 s on, 3 s off. 8.5 m (28 ft) post rising from a round 1-story concrete equipment room. Entire lighthouse is white. Google has a distant satellite view. Located on a short breakwater at the southern entrance to the harbor on Suga Shima. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. JCG-2751; Admiralty M6049; NGA 6324.

Toba City Harbor Lighthouses
Note: The city of Toba is located on the west side of the entrance to Ise Bay.
* Kozaki (Kou Saki)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 91 m (299 ft); white light, 4 s on, 4 s off. 8 m (26 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower with double gallery, attached to the seaward end of a square 1-story concrete equipment building. Entire lighthouse painted white. Misty's Tour has a closeup photo, Lighthouse-Japan.com has photos, another photo is available, and Google has a satellite view. Located on a promontory at the northwestern side of the entrance to the Toba harbor complex in lower Ise Bay. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS JPN-278; JCG-2744; Admiralty M6064; NGA 6268.
Omura Shima
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 11 m (36 ft); one long and two short red flashes every 8 s. 10 m (33 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower. Entire lighthouse is red. A distant view from the sea is available, and Google has a distant satellite view. Located at the west end of an island about 1.6 km (1 mi) northeast of Kou Saki. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. JCG-2745; Admiralty M6063.6; NGA 6264.
* Toba Range Front
Date unknown (station established 1912). Active; focal plane 43 m (141 ft); continuous red light. 24 m (79 ft) square skeletal tower with gallery, painted white. Lighthouse-Japan.com has excellent photos, and Google has a distant satellite view. The range guides ships into the harbor of Toba, which is just inside the west entrance to Ise Bay. Located on a hillside above the northwest corner of Toba harbor. Site status unknown, but the tower is easy to see from nearby. ARLHS JPN-654; JCG-2756; Admiralty M6050; NGA 6276.
* Toba Range Rear
1912. Active; focal plane 59 m (194 ft); red light, 2 s on, 2 s off. 8 m (26 ft) 2-stage octagonal cylindrical tower, upper portion metal and lower portion concrete, attached to the seaward side of a square 1-story concrete equipment building. Entire lighthouse painted white. Lighthouse-Japan.com has good photos, Misty's Tour has another photo, and Google has a distant satellite view. Located on heights above Toba. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS JPN-653; JCG-2757; Admiralty M6050.1; NGA 6280.
* Tōshi Kō South Breakwater
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 14 m (46 ft); green light occulting once every 4 s. 8.5 m (28 ft) round concrete tower, flared at the top and attached to a small equipment shelter. Entire lighthouse is white. Doko Kanakata has the closeup at right and a view from the harbor, and Bing has an indistinct satellite view. Tōshi Shima is an island about 8 km (5 mi) long located just to the northeast of Toba. The island is readily accessible by ferries from Toba. Located on a breakwater of the harbor at the east end of the island. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS JPN-1864; JCG-2747; Admiralty M6058; NGA 6312.
Toshi South Breakwater Light
Tōshi Kō South Breakwater Light, Toba, August 2004
Panoramio Creative Commons photo by Doko Kanokata
Shimaga Saki (Shima Ga Saki)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 29 m (95 ft); two white flashes every 7 s. 9.5 m (31 ft) cylindrical concrete tower with a cross-shaped cross section, rising from a 1-story concrete equipment building. Entire lighthouse painted white. Misty's Tour has a good closeup, another photo is available, and Google has a distant satellite view of the cape. Located on a promontory at the western tip of Tōshi Shima. Site status unknown. ARLHS JPN-1852; JCG-2753; Admiralty M6063; NGA 6292.
Maruyama Saki
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 13 m (43 ft); four green flashes, in a long-short-long-short pattern, every 17 s. 10 m (33 ft) round concrete tower, wider at the top, mounted on a round concrete pier. Entire lighthouse is green. A distant view is available, and Google has a distant satellite view. Located on a reef about 200 m (220 yd) off the eastern tip of Sakate Shima, an island in Toba harbor. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. JCG-2752; Admiralty M6047.8; NGA 6304.
* Sakate South Breakwater
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 12 m (39 ft); red light, 3 s on, 3 s off. 10 m (33 ft) concrete post rising from a square 1-story concrete equipment shelter. Entire lighthouse is red. A photo is at right, and Google has an indistinct satellite view. Located at the end of the breakwater sheltering a small boat harbor on the south side of Sakate Shima. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS JPN-1851; JCG-2759; Admiralty M6047.6; NGA 6288.
Seigan Shima
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 9.5 m (31 ft); two white flashes every 5 s. 9.5 m (31 ft) round hourglass-shaped concrete tower, painted black with one red horizontal band. Google has a distant satellite view. Located on a reef in the center of the southern entrance to the Kabura Strait. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. JCG-2760; Admiralty M6047.4; NGA 6300.
Toba Kō Light
Toba Kō South Breakwater Light, Toba, January 2009
Panoramio photo copyright trumpkin; used by permission
Maenaga Se
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 9 m (30 ft); one long and two short red flashes every 8 s. 8.5 m (28 ft) concrete post centered on a round cylindrical concrete tower. Entire lighthouse is red. The Lighthouse in Japan site has a distant view, and Google has a distant satellite view. Located on a reef on the west side of the entrance to the Kagamiura harbor on the south side of Toba. Accessible only by boat, but there are good views from shore. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS JPN-0325; JCG-2762; Admiralty M6047; NGA 6332.

Toba City South Coast Lighthouses
* Ijika (Izika)
1962. Active; focal plane 38 m (125 ft); two white flashes every 7 s. 9.5 m (31 ft) slender octagonal concrete tower rising from a 1-story concrete equipment room. Entire lighthouse is white. Stacey Salamon has a closeup photo, a 2011 closeup is available, Lighthouse-Japan.com has a photo, a 2011 closeup is available, Misty's Tour has another photo, and Google has a satellite view. Located in a hotel parking lot on a promontory at Izika, a seaside town about 10 km (6 mi) southeast of Toba. Site open, tower closed. Site manager: Hotel Ijikaso. ARLHS JPN-195; JCG-2764; Admiralty M6046; NGA 6336.
* Yoroi Saki
1963. Active; focal plane 27 m (89 ft); white light, 3 s on, 3 s off. 9.5 m (31 ft) slender octagonal concrete tower rising from a 1-story concrete equipment room. Lighthouse-Japan.com has several good photos, Misty's Tour has additional closeup photos, and Google has a satellite view. This lighthouse appears to be a copy of the Izika lighthouse. Located on a sharp promontory sheltering the fishing port of Kusaki. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS JPN-760; JCG-2766; Admiralty M6045; NGA 6344.

Information available on lost lighthouses:

  • Yokkaichi (1886-?), waterfront of Yokkaichi.

Notable faux lighthouses:

Adjoining pages: East: Nagoya Area | South: Southern Mie

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Posted November 5, 2006. Checked and revised September 2, 2013. Lighthouses: 32. Site copyright 2013 Russ Rowlett and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.