Shikoku (四国) is one of Japan's four main islands. It is the smallest island.
Shikoku region covers the entire island.
The name Shikoku literally means "four countries" in Japanese. Shikoku was made of four old "countries" or provinces that are now prefectures. In other words, each prefecture has a modern name and an old provincial name. The old names are still used sometimes, especially for foods, music, or art.
- Ehime, formerly Iyo Province – to the west
- Kagawa, formerly Sanuki Province – to the north
- Kōchi, formerly Tosa Province – to the south
- Tokushima, formerly Awa Province – to the east
- Kōchi – home of "Yosakoi" and many local sights
- Matsuyama, Ehime – is best known for the old hot springs at Dogo Onsen
- Takamatsu, Kagawa – the largest city in Shikoku
- Tokushima – home of the Awa Odori festival in August
- Uwajima – has a fertility shrine and wrestling bulls
- Naruto – the east gate of Shikoku.
Points of interest
- Cape Ashizuri – a scenic cape at the southernmost point of Shikoku
- Iya Valley – a remote but beautiful mountain valley
- Kotohira – the site of the Kompira-san shrine
- Mount Ishizuchi – the tallest peak in Shikoku
There are twelve original castles left in Japan and Shikoku is home to four of them.
- Marugame Castle, Marugame
- Kōchi Castle, Kochi
- Matsuyama Castle
- Uwajima Castle, Uwajima.
Temples and Shrines
The 88 Temple Pilgrimage is a famous but difficult 1,647-kilometer circle around the entire island. Serious pilgrims may choose to complete the 88 Temple Circuit on foot. Other people uses buses.
Images for kids
Shikoku Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.