15 Best Beaches in Japan: High Tides, Good Vibes

Japan is a beautiful country popular for its eye-catching landscapes, gorgeous temples and shrines, ancient monuments, colorful festivals, stunning floral displays, and mouthwatering dishes.

When it comes to talking about the best beach destination, you might not think about Japan at first.

But being an island country, it is no wonder that there are numerous gorgeous beaches scattered throughout Japan.

From turquoise water and white sand beaches on Okinawa island to mind soothing views and fun-filled ones in Kanagawa, every beach in Japan will leave no stone unturned to please you with its breathtaking beauty.

These beaches are also very popular destinations for a summer getaway with plenty of activities available.

And today, I am here with the list of the 15 best beaches in Japan.

15 Most Beautiful Beaches in Japan

Well, now get ready and explore them one by one to find out your desired destination for the summer holiday.

1. Jodogahama Beach

With the vibrant contrast of the sharp white rocks, green pine forests, and deep blue water, it won’t be that surprising if I compare this scenic beach with paradise.

The name Jodogahama Beach, which translates to Pure Land Beach, is one of the most renowned places of picturesque beauty on the Rikuchu Coast.

Jodogahama,miyako city

Listed on Japan’s 100 Best Beaches, this beach is indeed an excellent place for swimming, with crystal clear bluish water and gentle waves.

One thing you cannot do here is digging your toes into the sand as the beach itself is quite rocky.

But don’t worry, the serene beauty and the calm atmosphere will make this up for you, leaving no regret in your mind.

There are many facilities on this beach for your convenience, such as a bus terminal building, a rest house, a marine house, and a boat rental service.

Jodogahama

You may look out for small fish, crabs, etc., in the tide pools along the walkway from the beach to the marine house.

If you want to observe the area more deeply, you have to go to the nearby Jodogahama Visitor Center. Here you will also find the map of closer hiking trails.

For a more relaxing activity, you can consider joining one of the cruises that depart from the beach to tour the nearer waters and islands, as well as the famous Blue Cave.

2. Yuigahama Beach

Yuigahama beach has gained popularity as one of the finest beaches for swimming.

This sandy beach is shallow, and the waves here are relatively calm. Hence, you can enjoy swimming without worrying about safety.

View of Yuigahama Beach

And for this reason, this beach has become very popular among surfers as well. No other place can be safer than this for a beginner.

A large number of visitors are drawn to this beach because of its convenient location, good maintenance, and attractive facilities.

Walk only 15 minutes on foot from Kamakura Station, and you will reach this fun-filled beach.

You will find many beautiful beach huts that offer shower facilities and meals for visitors.

Mountain Fuji and Yuigahama beach

A cafe named Umi-no-ie (house at sea) remains open only during the summer. You can enjoy a variety of menus there, and take a shower or rent parasols at extra cost.

Fireworks and open-air markets are the main highlights of this beach.

Take a walk, play around with your pet or enjoy the sunset here. Even the tallest mountain of Japan, Mt. Fuji, can be seen from here on a sunny day.

3. Zushi Beach

You should head to Zushi Beach if you want to enjoy the best view of the sunset, one of the best beaches in Japan near Tokyo.

It is just an hour away from Tokyo Station, making it a perfect day trip with the water from the Japanese capital.

Zushi Coast and Sunset Scenes

Nowadays, it has become a popular destination to enjoy the sunset.

However, there are some specific restrictions in this place, such as no sound system being allowed here. And it is not among the beaches in Japan that allow tattoos.

No matter in which season you go there, you will always have lots of fun activities to do.

A movie night on the beach in spring! Surprised, right?

Well, Zushi Beach Film Festival is held here in spring to add a bit of culture to your beach trip.

Zushi seashore fireworks

Anyway, summer is for swimming and bathing in the sea.

Besides, this bustling beach has visitors enjoying all kinds of marine sports like windsurfing, paddle boarding, and many more during summertime.

You can enjoy a Yabusame ceremony (archery on horseback) and NIGHT WAVE (an illumination event) in autumn. And viewing Mount Fuji can be a convenient thing to do in winter.

Apart from all these, the cliffs around offer a number of short trails. You can also visit one of the cafes or restaurants near the beach to satisfy your tummy.

4. Emerald Beach

To the north of Okinawa’s main island, Honto, this Emerald beach is located on the apex of the Motobu Peninsula.

Actually, this beach is a part of the Ocean Expo Park, extending for 3km along the coast.

The beach has a unique shape, and it is located in the northern corner of the park.

Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium

The main attraction is the famous Churaumi Aquarium, which is reputedly the best in Japan and the second largest in the whole world.

So, don’t forget to visit the aquarium while you are in Emerald Beach.

Well, keeping the other things aside, now come to the scenic view of the beach.

The combination of beautiful white sand and the stunning cobalt blue water of the ocean will blow your mind away, creating a spectacular view.

Moreover, its water is so clean and clear that it ranked grade A by the Japanese Ministry of Environment.

Emerald beach

And you might be pleased to know that this beautiful beach is divided into three sections for three individual purposes.

One beach is for relaxation, one for taking in the scenery and the third one is for swimming and other activities.

For your convenience, I am mentioning the time and season of swimming; April-September 8:30-19:00; October 8:30-17:30.

Anyway, if you visit this place in summer, you can attend the Ocean Expo Park Summer Festival, where a sunset concert starts in the evening at the beach.

And be ready to witness the magnificent fireworks after the concert. Around 10,000 fireworks lighting up the night sky will give you a never-forgetting experience for a lifetime.

5. Oarai Sun Beach

Oarai Sun Beach is located in the Oarai area in the east of Ibaraki prefecture.

This popular beach offers various marine sports, a range of events including beach volleyball and surfing contests, beautiful ocean scenery, delicious seafood, hot springs, and many other attractions.

Oarai coast, Ibaraki

The amazing thing about this place is it is a universal beach with barrier-free facilities. So, visitors with disabilities and older adults can comfortably enjoy the beach as well.

From swimming, surfing to stand-up paddleboarding, bodyboarding, jet skiing, and motor paragliding, Oarai Beach offers a range of exciting and fun-filled marine activities.

If you are a beginner surfer, this beach will provide you with enough safety as the surrounding sea dikes reduce the impact of high waves.

You can also consider enjoying a beach camp here from spring to summer and fall.

Visit the nearby Ibaraki Prefectural Oarai Aquarium or Aquaworld that features the largest shark exhibition in Japan during the daytime.

Oarai Sun Beach

Otherwise, go fishing, play tennis, or visit Oarai Isosaki Shrine, located within walking distance, famous for its attractive torii gate.

At night, enjoy a fresh seafood barbecue with the ocean view and, of course, don’t forget to observe the stunning Oarai Sun Beach annual fireworks display with a musical backdrop as no summer holiday is complete without it.

6. Kujukuri Beach

Occupying much of the northeast coast of the Boso Peninsula, Kujukuri Beach is located in Chiba Prefecture.

With approximately 60 km in length, this beach is the second-longest in Japan, a popular swimming and surfing destination for Greater Tokyo and Chiba residents.

Kujukuri beach

This beach is ideal for spending lazy days sunning and surfing. It is well-known as one of the best surfing spots in the country and offers a wide range of other marine sports as well.

If water activities are your thing, go to this place and choose from wakeboarding, surfing, jet skiing, and windsurfing.

However, be careful of some certain parts of the beach, where blasts of wind from the Pacific make the waves jerky and challenging for surfers.

You can see a long continuous horizon to the east and pine forest-topped reefs to the west.

Surfing in Japan

At its northern edge, there is Cape Inubo, which offers clear panoramic views of the ocean and a historic aged lighthouse.

One thing that makes Kujukuri Beach stand out from the crowd is its herb garden.

You can visit this garden with more than 200 different herbs and take part in a salt-making class also.

This is something exceptional that you won’t experience anywhere else you go.

7. Odaiba Beach

Odaiba Beach, located on the shores of Tokyo Bay, might not be the nicest beach in Japan, but still, it is one of the highly visited ones.

Locals often consider this beach an entertaining island because this artificially created 800-meter-long beach is surrounded by many shopping malls, a dock, and plenty of amenities to keep visitors happy.

Sunset in Odaiba Beach

Nowadays, it is a popular place both among locals and tourists for shopping and sightseeing.

When the water here is not good enough for swimming, the sandy golden beach is perfect for an evening walk, just relaxing in the sun, family vacation, playing football, and frisbee.

Well, you might be used to enjoying beach sunset with natural places in the background, but what about the city view?

Yes, Odaiba will offer you watching the sunset against the backgrounds of the night city, with spectacular views of the Rainbow Bridge, Tokyo Tower, the panorama of the city, and the reflection of the bright lights in the bay.

Odaiba beach

During summer, Odaiba becomes the center for varieties of events such as sports tournaments on the sand or in the water like beach volleyball and sailing competitions.

In July, the matsuri festival is held on the beach, where many people stop by to see paper lanterns lit up.

This beach can be your perfect half-day escape, especially if you want to combine your beach trip with some dining and shopping.

8. Yonaha Maehama Beach

Yonaha Maehama is the beach that has made Miyako Island a popular destination for locals and tourists.

With its seven-kilometer-long stretch of pristine white sand, this Yonaha Maehama Beach is a slice of paradise on earth and has been regarded as the best white sand beach in East Asia.

The atmosphere of the island on which the beach is positioned is fairly relaxed, and the land is also less-spoiled than the rest of the country.

Yonaha Maehama Beach

You will see Kurima Island on the front side of the beach.

This rarely crowded beach offers world-class snorkeling and scuba diving in its turquoise waters.

Besides, here you can also enjoy an unrivaled sunset as a bonus.

This beach attracts most of its visitors from the spring through the autumn.

It also hosts the swimming section of an annual “Strongman” contest at the end of April.

For refreshment and unwinding, this picturesque beach has sun parasols and deck chairs.

Yonaha Maehama beach

You can idly sit back here all day and plan your ongoing journeys in Miyako.

There are also showers and toilet facilities nearby and banana boats and jet skis to rent.

Moreover, campsites and hotels are found along the shore.

9. Wakasa Wada Beach

Wakasa Wada, one of the best beaches in Japan mainland, is the most popular swimming beach in the Wakasa region of southern Fukui.

It became Asia’s first beach to get a certification of Blue Flag In 2016.

The local people tend to call it the Mount Fuji of Wakasa, as you can enjoy the clear view of Mount Aoba here.

Wakasa Bay

This beach is always full of smiles, and it has crystal-clear, shallow waters, white sandy beaches, and beautiful surroundings.

The fine white sand creates a pleasant sensation even when walking barefooted along the shore. Hence, there will be no worries about wearing special shoes.

Moreover, this beach is equipped with lifeguards during the swimming season. So, it seems that it is not only beautiful but also a fun and safe beach.

Even if you have young children, you can relax here while your kids splash merrily along the shore.

Bay of Wakasa

Besides, there are facilities or all the conditions for recreation for physically challenged people also.

What more you can do is enjoy paddleboarding and fishing on the calm sea waters.

Also, consider exploring Meikyodo Cave, a key attraction at Wakasa.

10. Kotohiki Beach

Located on the side of the Sea of Japan, Kotohiki Beach is one of the best beaches in japan near Kyoto.

When it comes to talking about beaches around the Kyoto area, you might not think of this beach in the first place.

Kotohiki Park Ariake Beach

But with less crowd and relatively fewer expenses, this beach is a hidden gem of Kyoto Prefecture.

Local people want to keep this place a secret, and that’s why this area is less packed than the other beaches, even during the peak season.

Here you can see golden white sand for miles along the beach. The amazing thing is the Ministry of the Environment selected the sound of these sands as one of the hundred Soundscapes of Japan in 1996.

If you take a walk far enough, you will be rewarded with a stunning view of towering reefs and slightly gentler water.

Kotohiki Beach

You will find many spots to sit back and relax here on the beach. If you walk further along the beach, you can find an outdoor rotenburo or hot spring.

Dip yourself into this later in the day when the temperature drops down, and from here, you can relish the sight of the sun setting behind the mountains.

11. Kira Waikiki Beach

Have you heard the word Waikiki?

Well, if you haven’t, let me inform you that Waikiki is a famous beach in Japan that has got recognition for its yearly Hawaiian Festival.

Waikiki Beach

While being in Japan, If you prefer to experience a bit of Hawaii without the long, tiring trip, try to attend this beach festival.

Kira Waikiki beach is situated in central Japan, near Nishio and Miyazaki, in Aichi Prefecture.

Waikiki Beach hosts this festival every year at the end of August, which attracts Polynesian dance lovers throughout Japan.

Here, you can enjoy everything about Hawaii, including hula and fire dances.

The sandy coastal zone and the crystal-clear and shallow strip make this beach convenient for swimming with kids, sunbathing, enjoying water sports, and capturing beautiful snaps of the sunrise.

Many palm trees will be seen in the surrounding beach area, which gives it a tropical look.

waikiki beach

Altogether, the Kira Waikiki is a cozy and comfortable beach that offers every visitor a pleasant atmosphere of a spa holiday.

You will find all the necessary beach infrastructure here, such as lounges and dressing rooms, showers and toilet facilities, beach equipment, rescue service, and also jet ski rental.

Good quality hotels, shops, and cafes are also found next to the beach.

If you spend your vacation here, it will be a great opportunity to visit some nearby attractions like Kodomo-no-Kuni parks, Nishio City Ikoi no Noen, and Konrenji Temple Midado.

12. Shirahama Beach

The natural wonder of the Kansai region, Shirahama Beach, is located in southern Wakayama.

If you are searching for a perfect sea-bathing spot in the Kansai region, you should pay a visit to this famous beach.

Shirahama means white beach or white bay. It is actually a largely artificial beach made with imported sand from Australia.

Shirahama Beach

However, this is by far the most beautiful beach in Wakayama, popular for oceanside onsen, exciting watersports, and outstanding cliff formation.

The beach is usually crowded during July and August, and people come here to snorkel, surf, or simply for bathing in the sun.

You can also take a relaxing stroll along the 620m long and beautiful white sandy beach. The sand is superbly fine and white as 90% of this imported sand is quartz.

No doubt it is the sister beach of Hawaii’s Waikiki Beach, as both have the finest white sand, crystal-clear emerald green waters, and numerous palm trees for a tropical feel.

The beach is also kid-friendly due to its calm and shallow water.

Nanki Shirahama Beach

Besides, it is the most well-developed beach in this area. You will get everything from food stalls to shops just a few steps ahead of the sand.

At the end of the beach, there is a beautiful red gate of Shirahama Jinja on top of a rock.

And not to mention the nearby Shirahama Onsen resort, which has been known as one of the country’s most popular hot springs (onsen)destinations.

After the swim or water activities, you can head to that onsen for an unforgettable hot spring experience.

13. Irino Beach

One of Japan’s most beautiful and sandy beaches, Irino Beach, is located to the west of the town of Kuroshio, 2 hours driving distance from Kochi.

This beach is widely used for surfing, peaceful beach holidays, and hosting sports and art parties such as a barefoot marathon or open-air art exhibition.

Irino Beach

The 4km white and sandy beach is surrounded by thick pine groves, creating an almost Mediterranean vibe.

The aroma of fine sand, warm sun and light sea breezes, and consistent waves, along with the picturesque sea view, will blow your mind away within an instant.

And if you love doing photography so much, then this place will be a gold mine for you.

The waves change in the morning and later in the afternoon, creating mirror-like thin sheets of water that display the colors of the sky, making this place a wonderful photography spot.

Such a breathtaking view it is!

Don’t forget to capture this heavenly beauty with your camera.

sandy beach

You can also see a huge number of turtles here. Around 5,000 turtles come to Irino Beach every year to lay their eggs and go back to their way up the sand, making an incredible picture-perfect view.

Anyway, you can rarely find any natural shade in Irino Beach. Hence, you should bring a hat and sunscreen if you plan a vacation here.

Try to go there on weekdays to make the whole beach to yourself.

And I would suggest you check out the nearby Kuroshio Honjin Onsen (hot springs) to enjoy a relaxing bath after visiting the beach.

14. Sesoko Beach

Around 800-meter long natural Sesoko beach is located on the Sesoko Island, which is on the north side of the main island Okinawa.

If you want crystal-clear water with the best transparency, you should visit this beach at least once.

The contrast of fine white sand and cobalt blue of emerald water makes this place an excellent one.

sesoko beach

Sesoko Beach is the most popular one among all the beaches on the island due to its stunning beauty and excellent condition for swimming.

It is also a recommended spot for snorkeling, with plenty of tropical fish to see, such as damselfish and triggerfish.

Here you will find many diving spots as well. There are spots where mysterious, fantastic views can be seen when the rays of sunshine penetrate the underwater caves.

Have fun by taking photos of the many popular species of fish.

And as Sesoko Island is protected from the north wind in winter, you can enjoy scuba diving throughout the whole year.

Moreover, this beach is a perfect place for viewing the most beautiful sunset because of its location.

So, after hanging out all day with your beloved one or your family, don’t forget to sit back here to enjoy the fantastic sunset.

sesoko island

While being in Sesoko Beach, what more you can try is parasailing, banana boating, and jet skiing.

Apart from all these, the neighboring islands named Minnajima and Iejima are clearly visible from the shore.

You can also observe the coral reef near Sesoko and walk there when the low tide exposes the coast for almost a kilometer.

For such activities and views enjoyed on this little slice of paradise, I guess you will never want to leave this place.

15. Bayside Beach Saka

Bayside Beach Saka is a man-made calm and spacious sandy beach of 1.2 km in length, which is located in Mizushiri, the closest beach to Hiroshima City.

You can reach the beach from the center of the city by car within 30 minutes.

This beach remains packed with tourists during summer. It’s a great destination to enjoy calm water and a fabulous sandy beach.

Interestingly, the swimming season of this beach only lasts for two months, from July to August.

Bayside

However, you can enjoy fishing here throughout the year, and the beach is open at night to let you enjoy the sunset and nighttime views.

What more you can do is, stroll along the coast, relish the beautiful views of the sea and surrounding landscape, or take some stunning pictures of sunset or sunrise.

If you are after a full beach day, I suggest you come here early in the morning to spot the offshore islands. Also, don’t forget to watch the stunning view of the sunset.

Well, I have completed discussing the 15 most beautiful beaches in Japan. So, I am concluding it right here.

Conclusion

I have presented the 15 best beaches in Japan to make your Japan trip a more exciting one.

I hope you can choose a few ones from these places and add them to your Japan bucket list.

Now make an initiation to visit them one by one.

Lastly, happy traveling.

Thanks for being with me till now.

Frequently Asked Question:

Odaiba, Yuigahama, Zushi, and Isshiki beaches are the closest beaches near Tokyo that are 8.2 km, 66.6 km, 70.3 km, and 72.5 km away, respectively, from Tokyo station. If you start your journey from Tokyo station, It will take 12 mins to 1 hour to reach these beaches.