Aoshima: Japan’s Island Every Crazy Cat Lady Should Visit

I’m not embarrassed to admit that I’m completely obsessed with cats. I know that almost every dog person will despise me for saying that, however, I just can’t help it. Whenever I see a cat, my day just gets instantly better. If you can relate to this, then I have some great news for you. There is an island in Japan that could be considered the Mecca of every crazy cat lady or gentleman. I’m talking about Aoshima.


Aoshima, also known as Cat Island or Neko no Shima, is an island in Ehime Prefecture, Japan. This tiny place is known for its large number of cat residents. In fact, cats largely outnumber the number of human residents living on this island. It is believed that the cat-to-human ratio is somewhere around 36:1. 

Once upon a time, cats were brought to this place to combat rodents on fishing boats. However, not too long after that, cats would completely take over this place. Because there are so many cats living in this place, most of them are fed by food donations coming from all over Japan


This tiny island is only one mile long, and the human population is at an all-time low. It is believed that less than 10 people live on the island, with more than 300 cats accompanying them. 

A lot of the people who previously lived there were sardine fishermen, but most of them left their jobs and moved to bigger cities. This is a problem a lot of small islands and villages in Japan are facing at the moment. 

What to do there?

As you can probably imagine, there isn’t too much to do on this tiny island. As we have already explained, the number of humans living there is incredibly small, and most of them are over the age of 70.

While you won’t find any fancy restaurants, huge shopping malls, and exciting museums on this island, it could still be a place worth visiting. Especially if you are a cat lover. 

As I have already explained, due to the fact that cats largely outnumber humans in Aoshima, there is no way that residents could feed all of their feline neighbors. 

Therefore, most of the tourists that come to visit this place bring some food to give to the cats. If you’re lucky, the cats will also accept some of your belly rubs and head pats. 


Most of the cats are spayed or neutered 

As you can probably imagine, Japan is currently working on spaying and neutering the cats that inhabit the island. The whole process started in February of 2018, however, they were unable to capture all of the cats living on the island. While most of the feline residents are neutered or spayed, their number is still increasing. Luckily, the number is increasing at a much slower and more manageable rate than it was before.

Kanita is a wanderlust-fueled traveler with an inclination for unraveling the mysteries of history, the paranormal, and the bizarre world of medicine. As a true crime buff, Kanita's nights are often spent delving into the depths of chilling mysteries. Yet, it's not just the paranormal that captivates her—her background in medicine fuels a fascination with the weird and wonderful world of medical oddities, from twisted historical practices to the myths and legends that shroud the field. From exploring haunted locales to uncovering the strange and morbid tales of medical history, Kanita is your guide to the unconventional, the unexplained, and the downright eerie.

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