See-through garden lavatory is one of the most unusual ways to relieve the call of nature.

Japanese toilets are known for their unusual looks and state-of-the-art features, but there’s one public toilet in Japan that’s known for its unusual location, and its grand title, as it’s been dubbed “the most spacious public toilet in the world“.

▼ Located in Chiba Prefecture, the unusual lavatory sits next to the local Kominato railway line, adjacent to Itabu Station.

This rural station is surrounded by lush greenery, and the trains that pass through here are single-carriage types, which stop here once or twice an hour from 6 a.m. to 8:00 pm.

A quick one-minute walk from the station will bring you to a log-walled enclosure, and this is where you’ll find the lavatory, which is officially known as the “Toilet in Nature“.

Though it looks like the door here might be an entryway to a locked private property, it’s easily opened, as long as the lavatory is unoccupied, and on the inside of the door, there’s a sign that reads:

▼ “This is a female toilet. After using the toilet, please leave the door open.

Sure enough, the log wall had the icon of a woman on it, suggesting the entire space behind this door was for the exclusive use of women.

This might seem like bad news for others with an urge to go, but no need to fret — there’s actually a unisex multipurpose toilet just outside the walled enclosure.

After investigating the details of the Toilet in Nature online, we found that although the world’s most spacious toilet is said to be for women only, it’s possible for men to enter the grounds behind the wall, as long as the toilet isn’t in use at the time.

▼ While men are allowed to walk around inside, they still have to do their business outside.

We weren’t entirely sure why this particular lavatory had been designated a female-only space, but when we took a peek inside, we breathed a sigh of relief that the so-called Toilet in Nature wasn’t a free-for-all, pull-up-a-patch-of-grass affair inside the enclosure. Instead, there was an actual toilet here, glistening in the distance like a porcelain throne.

The path leading to the throne was a beautiful one – it was draped in dappled sunlight, with tiny flowers springing up between the green grass and birds serenading our every step as if we were a Disney princess setting off to tinkle.

▼ Our throne at the end of the path was waiting for us in a glass-walled room.

As we got closer to the cubicle, the throne inside seemed to have a character all of its own, making us feel as if we might need to curtsy in front of it.

The cubicle appeared to have everything you’d want, and more, from a public toilet – there was an abundance of loo roll, clean fixtures, a modern sink…and no neighbouring stalls for other users to enter and rudely interrupt your business.

Of course, the see-through walls might present a different type of privacy issue for users, but that’s easily solved with the built-in curtain that wraps all the way around the unit for those too shy to do their business in public.

Sitting on the throne here is what we imagine using a toilet in heaven feels like, even with the cubicle door locked and the curtain wrapped around for privacy. There’s something about hearing the birds chirping nearby, and knowing you’re sitting in the middle of nature that makes this call of nature a very unusual, and slightly thrilling, experience.

▼ There’s peace of mind knowing you’re locked behind two doors in the 200-square-metre (2,152-square-foot) flower garden, though.

If you’re wondering why there’s a toilet in a garden in the middle of nowhere, it’s because it was originally an art installation designed by Sou Fujimoto, an architect who designed the cubicle as a way of challenging everyday notions of public and private spaces, and traditional perceptions of smallness and largeness.

▼ Hence this “small” cubicle with far-stretching views goes by the unofficial title of “world’s largest public toilet”.

▼ The toilet was initially installed by Ichihara City, where Itabu Station is located, as an art piece in 2013.

▼ This map view shows just how close the garden and its toilet is to the railway line, which runs right next to it.

▼ The two-metre high walls surrounding the toilet help to protect the privacy of users while trains go past.

The Toilet in Nature has to be one of the most tranquil public toilets we’ve ever seen, and with changing scenery throughout the seasons, it’s a great spot to visit at any time of the year.

If you’re looking for another unusual lavatory to add to your must-try list when visiting Japan, may we suggest these public toilets in Kanagawa, which can assess your tiredness levels purely through their toilet seats!

Toilet in Nature
Address: Chiba-ken, Ichihara-shi, Itabu 943-3

Photos ©SoraNews24
● Want to hear about SoraNews24’s latest articles as soon as they’re published? Follow us on Facebook and Twitter!
[ Read in Japanese ]