Considered one of the Three Hidden Regions of Japan, Iya valley is a secluded gorge with hamlets dotting the surrounding mountainsides. Given its remoteness, Iya has been a refuge since ancient times, serving as a hideaway for the Heike clan that fled here after their defeat to the Genji clan in the Gempei War at the end of the 12th century . The Homes are located in the Ochiai and Tsurui hamlets, both in East, or "Inner" Iya, where you can find undisturbed natural beauty and traditional scenery that have largely disappeared from the rest of Japan.
Tokyo: 3.5 hrs (by plane & car)
Osaka: 3 hrs (by plane & car)
The closest airport to Iya is Kochi airport, which is approx. a 1.5hr flight from Tokyo and 1.0hr flight from Osaka Itami aiport. From Kochi airport, Iya is approx. 2.0hrs by car.
It is highly recommended that you arrive by car.
If you are driving from Osaka, Kobe, Takamatsu Airport or Tokushima Airport: Get off the Tokushima Expressway at the Iwai-Ikeda Interchange, and take Route 32 south until you hit Prefectural Highway 45. Take Prefectural Highway 45 into Iya. (1.5hrs from Iwai-Ikeda Interchange).
If you are driving from Kochi: Get off the Kochi Expressway, at Otoyo Interchange and take Route 32 North, until you hit Prefectural Highway 45. Take Prefectural Highway 45 into Iya. (1.0hrs from Otoyo Interchange).
GPS Code [ 357 172 025 ]