Cat Island Japan – The Place Lives Up to Its Name

Japan’s Tashirojima Island is just one of many islands off of the nation’s east coast, tiny and sparsely populated. Sparsely populated by people, at least.

When it comes to furry felines, however, Tashirojima is positively overrun, hence its nickname, “Cat Island.” Indeed, there are far more stray cats wandering the island than there are people, and photos of the island will attest to it.

There are only 100 humans on the island, but they take it upon themselves to feed the incredibly cute stray cats. No dogs, of course, are allowed to break the peace. The locals believe feeding the cats will bring them good fortune, wealth and happiness. I don’t know about the first two, but seeing this many kitties flock to my home would certainly bring me plenty of happiness.

The island was used as a hub for making silk for many years. Originally, the cats were brought to the island because they’re a natural predator for silk worms, but since the silk industry on Tashirojima died down, the cat population has only grown and grown. Naturally, it’s become something of a hot spot for tourists who love kitties and seafood, since oysters are an island specialty.

Before you begin packing your bags full of kitty kibble and buying a plane ticket for Japan, scroll through more photos below.

Photos courtesy of