Oboke Gorge (大歩危, Ōboke) and neighboring Koboke Gorge (小歩危) a little ways downstream, are narrow, steep sided gorges near the entrance to the Iya Valley and popularly combined with a visit there. Cut by the swirling rapids of the Yoshino River, their names mean "big dangerous steps" and "small dangerous steps" as their jagged, rocky walls can be perilous to navigate.

The gorges are one of the leading outdoor destinations in Japan, rivaling Minakami in Gunma Prefecture, and are known for their beautiful natural scenery and for the variety of outdoor attractions, such as whitewater rafting and canyoning, that can be enjoyed on the river.

Oboke Sightseeing Boat Cruise

Hours: 9:00 to 17:00
Closed: No closing days
Admission: 1200 yen

Lapis Oboke

Hours: 9:00 to 17:00
Closed: Tuesdays from Dec to Feb (or next day if Tue is a national holiday)
Admission: 600 yen (both museums)

River Rafting

Hours: 8:00 to 18:00
Season: April to November
Admission: Half day tours start from 6000 yen

Getting there and around

The hourly limited express trains between Okayama and Kochi stop at Oboke Station along the way. Alternatively, Oboke can be reached by train (30 minutes, 460 yen by infrequent local train or 790 yen for an unreserved seats on an hourly limited express train) or bus (40 minutes, 670 yen, every 2-3 hours) from Awa Ikeda Station.

How to get to and around the Iya Valley

Hotels around Iya Valley

    • Hotel Iya Onsen
      A secluded onsen ryokan with stunning view of Iya Valley. Open-air bath 170m down by cable car is a must-try. Free shuttle to/from JR Oboke Sta. Wi-Fi available.
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