8 Best Beaches in Japan – The Ultimate Guide

Posted June 23, 2022 in Top Contenders - Last updated May 15, 2024

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Japan offers some of the most beautiful spectacles, whether in the form of mountains, plains, or rivers. However, when you think of a beach destination, Japan is not the first name that comes to mind. The fact of the matter is that this country has some of the most gorgeous beaches, especially in Okinawa and the region’s southern islands. The country offers a lively and chilled-out surf scene on these beaches, which is something recommended by many international travelers. However, you can experience true bliss in the various beach resorts if you prefer a relaxing beach destination. Let us explore the top 8 underrated beaches of Japan!

If you are looking for the best beach destinations in Japan, we have picked some of the most underrated Japanese beaches. Check out this list to plan your next beach holiday.

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1. Yonoha Maehama Beach

This beach is located in the southwest corner of Miyako Island and is widely considered one of the best beaches in Japan. It stretches across 4 miles and has beautiful clear water. The shallow water makes it ideal for water sports and swimming. If you want to spend an evening watching the sunset, the Yonoha Maehama beach is the best spot to catch it. Although this beach can be visited all year round, if you come in the off-season, you can experience a private beach.

2. Kondoi Beach

This beach is located on Taketomi Island, widely known for its lifestyle, aesthetics, and traditional Ryukyu architecture. It is spread across 2 miles. You can easily reach the beach on foot or using a bike. However, there is a much more exciting experience that should not be missed. A great way to reach the Kondoi beach is by taking a water buffalo cart ride, which will take you through the Taketomi village. Once you reach the beach, you can relax in the turquoise blue waters and take a trip to the nearby Kaiji Beach.

3. Minna Beach

This Okinawa beach is located on a crescent-shaped island known as the Minna-Jima. It is located in the Motobu town of Okinawa and is only a 15-minute ferry ride from the Toguchi Port. The Minna beach is a favorite of the local beach lovers, scuba divers, and snorkelers because of its underwater visibility and easy accessibility. It is also one of the less populated beaches compared to the ones on Okinawa’s mainland. In addition, the beach offers a wide variety of food stalls and jet ski rentals.

4. Kabira Bay

This beach is located on one of the biggest Yaeyama islands, the Ishigaki island, popular for its sandy beaches and ideal for sunbathing and swimming. If you want to swim, you can head to the Yonehara and Sukuji beaches. Kabira Bay is one place that does not allow swimming, but it is a sight to behold. It is located in the Iriomote-Ishigaki National Park and is also the site of black pearl cultivation. It offers a view of beautiful white sands and emerald-green water. You can also go for a glass-bottom boat tour, which will allow you a glimpse into the underwater ecosystem of the bay.

5. Nishihama Beach

This beach is located on Hateruma Island, also popular for its stone monument. If you do a loose translation of Hateruma, it means ‘Edge of the Coral’ or ‘The Last Reef.’ The name of this island is derived from uruma, the Okinawan word for coral. The best part about Nishihama Beach is the soft and blindingly white beach, which offers many options for offshore snorkeling, too. The Nishihama beach is also a great spot for catching the Southern Cross constellation because of this region’s lack of light pollution.

6. Aharen Beach

Located on Tokashiki Island, Aharen Beach shares the same climate as the Bahamas. As a result, this is one of the best places to spot humpback whales and sea turtles, which usually migrate to this region in the winter. In addition, Aharen Beach is great for snorkeling and swimming in the aquamarine waters.

7. Hatenohama Beach

This beach is found on the Kume island and can be easily reached using boats in the Tomari Fisherina. The specialty of the beach is that it does not have any trees and is surrounded by rock outcroppings and a ring of corals. Hatenoma Beach was built because of years of tidal action.

8. Nishibama Beach

This beach is located on the northeast coast of Aka Island and stretches over 1 mile. The island itself has no shortage of picturesque beaches. However, if you are looking for a fairly empty beach in Japan, Nishibama is the best choice. You can relax on the white sands or snorkel in the transparent waters.

Conclusion

Japan is home to some stunning beaches that provide the perfect blend of relaxation and adventure. From the picturesque shores of Okinawa to the vibrant atmosphere of Kamakura, there is a beach destination for every type of traveler. Whether you prefer lounging in beach resorts or partaking in exciting water sports, these beaches offer something for everyone. 

As you plan your next trip to Japan, refer to this list of top beaches or seek recommendations from the Travel-Wise community. And don’t forget to utilize the Al trip planner tool to ensure a smooth and enjoyable journey. So pack your sunscreen and get ready to experience the beauty and charm of Japan’s beach culture.

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