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Best Beaches and Islands in Japan
- Imagine yourself on a calm stretch of sand on the remote island or a nearby beach along the coast of Tokyo, or exploring the undiscovered side of Japan. There are enough options out there to suit every type of traveler. Why not start planning your sandy, adventurous getaway now and scroll down to see our recommend beaches and islands in Japan by prefectures. Okinawa Okinawa is home to more than 160 different islands. Out of the many islands, Miyako and Ishigaki Island are far most popular holiday destinations with both local and international guests because of its easy accessibility using direct plane from Osaka and Tokyo. Not just its beguiling beaches with beautiful gradations of blue water with pristine white sands, but travellers enjoy leisurely island time with delicious Okinawan gourmet food during their stay. While the beaches are open year round, they are best enjoyed from April to November when the air temperature consistently tops 25 degrees and the water is very warm. Ishigaki Island (top) Miyako Island (bottom) Nagasaki Nagasaki prefecture has the most number of islands. The natural beauty on the island includes but is not limited to beaches and breathtaking natural scenery but also unique history featuring what were once hidden Christian communities. Out of the many, Fukue is a hub of historical charm, natural scenery and delicious local food, just off the coast of Nagasaki in Southern Japan. Of the Goto Islands, Fukue Island is the largest and most populated followed by Nakadori. Yet, in spite of being the largest, Fukue Island is still fairly small and mostly wild and hilly, while the secluded island of Ikitsuki offers some of Japan’s most rugged coastal escarpment. On the other, Nagasaki offers a post-apocalyptic island, Hashima Island, more familiary known as Gunkanjima (Battleship Island) where once served as a coal mining until 1974. Due to damage caused by a typhoon,currently it is not possible to land on Gunkanjima. The situation is expected to normalize on March 1, 2020. Until then, the island can be viewed on boat tours from the water. For more information, check its official webpage here. Kagoshima Despite being few hundred kilometers away from Kagoshima prefecture and much closer to Okinawa, there are two islands that belong to Kagoshima with some Okinawa cultural influence here and there. First island is the Yoron Island which has a population of about 6,000 people, and in this small island, residents enjoy living in the tropical paradise. The other being Amami Oshima Island where the climate is much similar to Okinawa with white beaches, beautiful coral reefs, mangroves and crystal-clear sea making it perfect for snorkeling, scuba-diving and kayaking. Okinawan guardian lion, “Shisa” on the roof of the house with its culture still imposed on Yoron Island (top right) From heart shaped tidal pool to beaches to mangroves, Amami Oshima Island is one of Japan's top island getaways. Fukuoka Located across Hakata Bay in Fukuoka prefecture, this Shikanoshima Island is a scenic island that offers great view of the coastline making it a popular destination for cyclists. As the island is at the tip of the sandbar connected to Hakata Bay, visitors can access from the land as well as from the sea. Shimane Oki is made up of 4 inhabited islands and 180 smaller uninhabited islands and rocky reefs (satellite rock clusters) located in the Sea of Japan roughly 50km north of Shimane peninsula and north-west of the main island (Honshu). The three inhabited islands, closest to mainland Japan form a circular shape in order from Nishinoshima Island, Nakanoshima Island, and Chiburijima Island. These islands are collectively known as Dozen, while the largest inhabited island is called Dogo Island. All of these islands have a mesmerizing and dynamic beautiful natural scenery which goes far beyond expectations. Hiroshima When one mentions Hiroshima, first thing comes to mind would be atomic bombing. Its shadows are haunting reminder of the brutality that occurred in 1945. However, Hiroshima is a destination in its own right making a great base for exploring the Seto Inland Sea, containing more than 350 islands with Shinto shrines, beautiful Japanese landscapes and delicious food and drinks. From Osaki-Shimojima Island where the finest oranges and lemons in Japan are made, to rabbit island on Okunoshima to scenic cycling journey to Mukaishima Island and Ikuchijima Island or to spend a more relaxing time at Sensuijima Island, there are enough destinations to choose from. Ehime The only one traversable by foot or bicycle from Honshu (main land) and Shikoku, and also a popular destination for cycling is the Shimanami Kaido. This is a 60km long toll road that connects Japan’s main island (Honshu) and Shikoku passing over six small islands in the Seto Inland Sea. There are many places to pull over the bicycle on this road trip for an amazing adventure. Kagawa Setouchi Islands, proximity to Kagawa prefecture are made up of people, cats, olives and contemporary art. Devoting to art, major Setouchi art islands, Naoshima, Teshima and Shodoshima are most easily accessible from Takamatsu port in Kagawa prefecture. These islands are particularly known for their thriving local art with art festivals showcasing their works from both Japanese and international artists. These events are a must-see for art fans. “Red Pumpkin” ©Yayoi Kusama,2006 Naoshima Miyanoura Port Square ／Photo ： Daisuke Aochi Okayama Best experienced in the summertime when the weather is stable with all the shops open, this seaside resort town, Ushimado in Okayama prefecture has a perfect spot for couples. The Kuroshima Venus Road, a sandbar that appears daily at low tide is popular to not just couples but also to nature lovers. It connects three small islands off of the coast of the Ushimado district in Setouchi City and time spent on the islands and sandbars can definitely make you relax and have a fulfilling natural experience. Hyogo Best accessed by car for road trip, Awaji Island is the largest island in the Seto Inland Sea after Shikoku located in Hyogo Prefecture.The island is tucked between Kobe and Naruto (Shikoku Island), connected with two suspension bridges, the Naruto Ohashi and the Akashi Kaikyo Ohashi bridges. History tells that this was the first island to be formed for Japan offering beautiful nature, historic culture, good food, and hotsprings. ©NAVITIME JAPAN. Travel Info Check out our travel tips to make your trip better!
What to Do in Awajishima
- Awajishima, an island in the Inland Sea known for its traditional puppet theater, stunning historical buildings and cutting edge Tadao Ando designed architecture, is an underrated destination with millennia of history. Since the island’s decline in the mid 20th century and its devastation by an earthquake in the 1990s, local leaders have led a tourism renaissance on Awajishima. A short jaunt from the cities of the Kansai region, Awajishima has always been historically important but was fairly sleepy until the opening of the suspension bridge over the Akashi Strait, which began bringing more visitors to the area. Many go for the kilometers of sandy beaches, the onsen, and to visit the castle and amusement park, but there are several other lesser known spots worth checking out. Watch Bunraku at Awaji Ningyo-Joruri Hall Watch Bunraku at Awaji Ningyo-Joruri Hall The traditional puppet theater of Awajishima is impossible to date but is thought to have been the fountainhead of the now more well known Osaka bunraku puppet theater. Through the first half of the 20th century, the artform declined as radio and television took over and the population of the island declined, but efforts to preserve puppet theater have been successful and there are now several theaters on the island. Watch Bunraku at Awaji Ningyo-Joruri Hall At the Awaji Ningyo-Joruri Hall, opened in 2012, there are daily performances of traditional plays and sketches. The interpretive center is the best place to start if you’re interested in knowing more about the artform. The stunning building sits not far from another architectural wonder: Honpukuji and Water Temple, designed by Tadao Ando. Board the Kanrinmaru Board the Kanrinmaru Board the Kanrinmaru at Minami Awaji harbor for the Uzushio Cruise, a trip around the whirlpools created by the tidal forces of the Inland Sea and the Pacific. The whirlpools are impressive but the real attraction is the ship itself: the Kanrinmaru is a replica of a storied screw driven steam corvette manufactured for Japan by Dutch shipbuilders. Kunjudo Kunjudo One of the famous products of the island is incense. The island still produces most of the incense used in Japan. In the 19th century, the residents of the island began producing their own blends of incense, using local and imported products. At Kunjudo in Taga, visitors can try their hand at making the local specialty. Kunjudo Kunjudo is a factory producing incense for the domestic and international markets. A tour begins with an introduction to the production process and ends with the incense making experience. The tour and experience are a very reasonable 500 yen and you get to take home your own personal creation. Akashi Kaikyo National Government Park Akashi Kaikyo National Government Park Akashi Kaikyo National Government Park is a fine place to experience the island's stark beauty and impressive views, and this coastal green space is a good place to unwind. The Daichi no-niji Garden is beautiful in all seasons but especially early summer when the flowers are in bloom. If you’re traveling with kids, let them burn off some energy at the playground or Children's Forest, or rent a boat to explore Hana no Nakaumi Lake and the Terrace of Waterfalls. The park also contains Kiseki no Hoshi Botanical Museum. ©NAVITIME JAPAN. Travel Info Check out our travel tips to make your trip better!
จังหวัดเฮียวโงะมีพื้นที่ชายฝั่งเหนือใต้ทอดยาวอยู่สุดทางทิศตะวันตกของภูมิภาคคันไซ ครอบคลุมภูเขาที่เขียวขจี ชายหาดในเมือง และแหล่งท่องเที่ยวที่มีความสำคัญทางประวัติศาสตร์ สถานที่ท่องเที่ยวหลักๆ ของจังหวัดจะอยู่ตามชายฝั่งทางตอนใต้ที่โกเบ เมืองหลวงของจังหวัดและเมืองท่าที่สวยงาม ซึ่งเป็นที่รู้จักกันดีในเรื่องการผลิตของเนื้อโกเบที่โด่งดัง และฮิเมจิ ที่ตั้งของปราสาทฮิเมจิ ซึ่งเป็นหนึ่งในปราสาทสมัยศักดินาที่รักษาไว้ได้อย่างสวยงามที่สุดของประเทศที่ตั้งอยู่อย่างน่าอัศจรรย์บนยอดเขา
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