3 Beautiful Beach Destinations In Japan To Recharge This Summer | CoolJapan

The glorious summer months are coming fast and if you are planning to take a summer vacation in Japan, there are lots of activities to keep everyone happy. Summertime in Japan is filled with unique events and experiences, from lively street festivals and firework displays to a variety of outdoor activities where one can connect with nature.

Japan’s summer season is also well-known for its hot weather and high humidity. To beat the sweltering heat, one of the best things to do is to cool down at one of Japan’s many beautiful beaches. Here are three beautiful beach destinations in Japan to recharge and celebrate the arrival of summer!

1. Yoronjima, Kagoshima Prefecture

Yoronjima, Kagoshima Prefecture

Yoronjima is a beach lover’s retreat with its many spectacular beaches. (Photo from: Kagoshima Prefectural Visitors Bureau)

Located in the southernmost part of the Amami Islands is the tropical paradise of Yoronjima. Also known as Yoron Island, this secluded coral island is surrounded by pristine white sand and clear turquoise waters.

Although it is part of Kagoshima Prefecture, Yoronjima is situated nearer the main island of Okinawa. The strong influence of the Ryukyu culture from neighbouring Okinawa resulted in its distinct island culture and history.

There are many pretty beaches around the small island but the highlight is the elusive Yurigahama beach.

Yurigahama beach

Beach revellers enjoying Yurigahama beach during low tide. (Photo from: Kagoshima Prefectural Visitors Bureau)

This low-lying sandbar magically appears only at low tide during a limited period from spring to autumn. Each time the beach reveals itself, it has a different shape and a different location. The lucky ones who were able to time their visits with the rise and recession of tides can look forward to an unforgettable experience strolling on white star-shaped sand and taking the most dreamy pictures.

Travellers who want to visit this phantom beach can charter a boat from the nearest Oganeku Beach, available from June to September. To make the most out of the experience, try the glass-bottom boat tours that allow you a glimpse of the island’s wonderful marine life!

2. Jodogahama Beach, Iwate Prefecture

Jodogahama Beach, Iwate Prefecture
Stunning aerial view of Jodogahama beach. (Photo from: Tohoku Tourism Promotion Organization)

Framed by sharp jagged rocks and surrounded by the deep blue sea, Jodogahama Beach is famed for being one of the most scenic places on the Rikuchu Coast. Local legend believes that this tranquil beach was once described by a visiting Buddhist priest in the 17th century to be gokuraku, 'a paradise' in Buddhist words, hence giving rise to its name which translates to mean “Pure Land Beach”.

Located on the edge of Miyako City in Iwate Prefecture, Jodogahama Beach is also part of the Sanriku Fukko National Park which is teeming with natural beauty.

Ranked as one of Japan’s 100 Best Beaches for Swimming, this idyllic haven is especially popular during the summer season. Its calm waters sheltered from the open ocean, white pebbled shore and dramatic rocky landscape attract visitors from all over the country. Here, you can take a refreshing swim in the gentle waves or just relax and soak in the scenery.

Jodogahama beach
Do come with a mat and proper footwear as Jodogahama is a pebble beach. (Photo from: Photo-AC)

Jodogahama Beach is easily accessible by bus or car from Miyako City. There are facilities available such as a boat rental service and a rest house that offers delicious local food. If you have time to spare, head to the nearby Jodogahama Visitor Centre and Iwate Marine Science Museum to learn more about the history of the area and fascinating local marine life.

3. Shikinejima, Tokyo

Tokyo is not all urban city and neon lights. Just three hours away from the bustling metropolis by high-speed ferry is a tiny but beautiful volcanic island lined with rugged cliffs and sandy beaches. Shikinejima, one of the clusters of Izu Islands, is a wild oasis of tide pool hot springs, forested trails and spectacular coastal views.

Shikinejima, Tokyo

The small volcanic island of Shikinejima offers endless adventures for nature enthusiasts. (Photo from: Photo-AC)

Largely undeveloped with a population of only around 500 (as of 2022 statistics), it is a popular island destination that draws urban dwellers who are looking for a bit of peace. There is plenty to do at Shikinejima for adventure-seekers; go on a nature trail, soak in one of the many natural hot springs or explore the island on rented bicycles. During summertime, the island’s picturesque sandy beaches are one of the main attractions.

Shikinejima has four beautiful beaches to explore and the charming Tomari Beach is a great choice for families.

Tomari Beach

Enjoy the slow life at Tomari Beach, perfect for families looking for a quiet spot of relaxation. (Photo from: © TCVB)

Protected by rocky outcrops, this tranquil inlet is home to white sand and shallow waters. This makes it perfect for swimming, sunbathing and playing in the water without having to worry about strong waves. The clear and calm water is also wonderful for beginners to try snorkelling.

There is a beach hut at Tomari Beach that sells snacks and drinks but it opens only during the peak summer season, so pack your own food if you visit during the off-peak months.