Ofunato is located on the southern coast of Iwate Prefecture, around one hour by car from the candidate site for the International Linear Collider.

The city suffered greatly from the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami of March 11, 2011, but Ofunato’s reconstruction has proceeded enough that the end is in sight – now they’re working on how the community will develop after the reconstruction ends.

First, I’ll show off what makes Ofunato Ofunato: its attractions and unique characteristics.

A wealth of nature and a beautiful city

You can see some really special scenery here in Ofunato, such as the Goishi Coast and the prefectural park surrounding Mount Gozan.

The Goishi Coast is filled with unique-looking rocks, islands and caves, and the entire 6km coastline has been designated as a national scenic spot and natural monument. It has many tourist attractions, including the Anatoshiiso rocks, which literally mean, “Rocks With Holes You Can Go Through” as seen by the photo below.

Summers are cool and almost no snow falls during the winter, meaning the climate is comparatively calm and comfortable. You can easily try your hand at many different activities, from scuba diving to BMX, fishing, boat cruises, and more.

Anatoshiiso rocks at Goishi Coast

Azaleas at their peak in June at Mount Goyozan

Scrumptious seafood – the bounty from the ocean!

Ofunato is right on the Sanriku coast, and the area right off the coastline is known for being one of the three largest fishing grounds in the world. Throughout the year you can try Pacific saury, salmon, bonito and other fresh fish as well as aquaculture delicacies like wakame seaweed, oysters, scallops, and sea urchin.

The city is known for having one of the largest catches of Pacific saury (“sanma”) in Japan, and uses the fish as a keyword in its city promotion activities – developing “Ofunato Sanma Ramen” and the slogan “Ofunato – A City Where You Can Feast on Fish”.

Ofunato Sanma Ramen

Now I’ll talk about what it’s like to live in Ofunato along with some administrative services we provide.

Looking for housing with our Vacant House Bank

We have recorded information on vacant houses within the city in our Vacant House Bank, and by sharing this on our homepage to the entire country, we are working to make use of these vacant houses as well as show them to people hoping to buy or rent.

Vacant houses are on the rise as the population decreases, but we’re hoping by efficiently using these vacant houses, we can avoid danger stemming from the house getting old, and also revitalize the area by encouraging people to settle in the area.

In Ofunato, we also provide incentives to those who move into the area and sign a contract to use these vacant houses. Furthermore, we also have a service that will assist with a portion of the costs needed to reform the dwelling.

Supporting fulfilling child-raising

Ofunato has nine private daycare centers, one private kindergarten, and 3 municipal childcare facilities- and no children on the waiting list for such daycare services.

Plus, a portion of these daycare centers have lengthened childcare hours, temporary care services, and post-illness childcare services, setting up an environment where you can raise your child even if you are working.

Additionally, we also have a child-raising support center and a support website, giving out support to any who needs it for child-raising.

A healthcare system that will give you peace of mind

In Ofunato, there is one large hospital (Iwate Prefectural Ofunato Hospital) and 38 medical clinics (as of April 1st, 2021). At Ofunato Hospital, there is an emergency center as well as a heliport, so it is possible to quickly transport patients to even higher-quality medical facilities.

We have also worked to make our healthcare system one that you don’t have to worry about, including creating a system where clinic rotate their hours so citizens are able to get treatment on holidays and other days off as well. (Japanese medical clinics are not typically open on holidays or some weekend days)


We hope you were able to learn more about Ofunato City.

If you’d like to live life surrounded by nature, where you can spend your leisure time by the ocean, and where you can a smorgasbord of tasty delights from the sea, then we certainly await your visit to Ofunato City.