Across the a narrow stretch of the Seto Inland Sea from Hiroshima, the island shrine of Miyajima is best known for its red torii gate, said to be one of the three best views in Japan.

The spectacular torii, built on tidal sands, faces the majestic Itsukushima shrine at the foot of Mount Misen. As the tide comes, sweeping under and around the ancient shrine, the torii appears to float on the sea. The shrine itself extends on stilts over the water, and at high tide the whole shrine appears to be floating on the waves.

Though Miyajima can easily be visited as a day trip, Into Japan Specialist Tours recommends an overnight stay in one of the island's superb ryokan or guest houses, and would be delighted to incorporate this into any tailor made tour of Japan.