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6 Best Beautiful Beaches Near Osaka: Dreamy Summer Destinations in Kansai

6 Best Beautiful Beaches Near Osaka: Dreamy Summer Destinations in Kansai

Date published: 21 July 2021

There are numerous beaches near Osaka, spread around the Kansai region, with gleaming white sands and crystal waters that contrast with the clear blue summer sky.

Included among these spectacular Kansai-area destinations are, Keino Matsubara on Hyogo’s Awaji Island, Shirarahama in Wakayama, Makino Sunny Beach on the shores of Lake Biwa in Shiga, and Osaka’s new Sen’nan Marble Beach and Sennan Long Park.

Table of Contents
  1. 1. Keino Matsubara Beach (Hyogo): Beautiful sunsets seen from a pine forest
  2. 2. Shirarahama (Wakayama): A large resort with a tropical mood
  3. 3. Sen’nan Marble Beach (Osaka): A favored destination for lovers
  4. 4. Amanohashidate (Kyoto): One of the three most scenic spots in Japan
  5. 5. Makino Sunny Beach (Shiga): Beautiful water and scenery unique to Lake Biwa
  6. 6. Isonoura (Wakayama): Kansai’s surfing sanctuary

1. Keino Matsubara Beach (Hyogo): Beautiful sunsets seen from a pine forest

1. Keino Matsubara Beach (Hyogo): Beautiful sunsets seen from a pine forest
Photo: PIXTA

Keino Matsubara Beach, which is about 2 hours JR Osaka Station via train and highway bus, is located on the west side of Minamiawaji City in southwestern Awaji Island.

It’s known for its scenic charm and 50,000 black pines spread along a 2.5 kilometers stretch. In 1928, the area was designated as a national scenic spot, and in 1955, it was designated as Setonaikai National Park.

Keino Matsubara is the largest beach on Awaji Island and typically opens in summer, although it’s closed in 2021. Japan’s Ministry of the Environment has selected 100 ocean areas and lakes nationwide at which visitors can swim comfortably, and among those, Keino Matsubara is one of the most highly rated.

The best time to visit, other than for daytime swimming, is in the evening. The sunset across the Harima Sea, selected as one of the “100 Best Sunsets in Japan,” is a magnificent sight, and the contrast with the pine forest is exquisite.

Visitors also get a beautiful view of Shodo Island just offshore and Goshokuhama beach to the north. Keino Matsubara is also home to “Proposal Road,” lined with Ibushi tiles unique to Awaji Island that have been inscribed with pledges of undying love.

Health & Safety Measures
Staff wear masks, gargle, wash hands regularly, and monitor body temperature / entry denied to anyone feeling unwell / masks required / temperature checks enforced

Recommended hotels nearby

  • Keino-matsubara Beach
    慶野松原海水浴場
    • Address Matsuhokotsuro, Minamiawaji, Hyogo 656-0304
    • TEL: 0799-43-5221 (Minamiawaji City Commerce and Tourism Division)
      Access: Approximately 70 minutes by express bus bound for Fukura from Sannomiya Station or approximately 50 minutes by express bus bound for Fukura from JR Maiko Station, then about 10 minutes by taxi from Kosaitan bus stop

2. Shirarahama (Wakayama): A large resort with a tropical mood

2. Shirarahama (Wakayama): A large resort with a tropical mood

Shirarahama is 2 hours and 40 minutes from Osaka’s JR Tennoji Station via limited express train and bus. Originally named Shirahama, this 620-meter white sand beach is one of Kansai’s most iconic beaches.

Located in Shirahama, Wakayama Prefecture, it’s the town’s main beach for sightseers and is visited by about 450,000 people every year. Selected as one of the “100 Best Beaches in Japan,” the Shirarahama celebrated its 20th anniversary as a sister beach to Waikiki Beach in Hawaii in 2020.

Shirarahama is a shallow beach and the smooth quartz sand is comprised of 90% silicic acid. The contrast between the emerald green sea, blue sky, and pure white sand is breathtaking.

In summer, umbrellas color the beach like flowers and palm trees provide a tropical mood. Watching the sunset from the beach is very popular, but sunrise is also recommended, when the early morning light reflects off the sand.

Shirarahama Beach will be open from July 1st to August 31st, 2021. The nearby “Shirasuna” mixed bathing outdoor bath invitingly offers hot spring bathing on the beach (bathing suits allowed).

Health & Safety Measures (Shirarahama)
Sanitizer installed / disinfection of showers and public toilets / hourly announcement to maintain social distance

Health & Safety Measures (Shirasuna open-air bath)
Disinfection, sterilization, and cleaning of shops and facilities / hand sanitizer installed / regular disinfection / staff wear masks, gargle, wash hands regularly, and monitor body temperature / limited capacity / increased space between seats / admission restrictions / entry denied to anyone feeling unwell / masks required / temperature checks enforced

Services for international guests
English pamphlets at the tourist information center, and foreign language signs on the beach.

Recommended hotels nearby

  • Shirarahama Beach
    • Address Shirahama-cho, Nishimuro-gun, Wakayama Shirahama, 649-2211
      View Map
    • Nearest Station Shirahama Station (JR Kisei Line / JR Kinokuni Line)
      15 minutes by bus
    • Phone Number 0739-43-6588

3. Sen’nan Marble Beach (Osaka): A favored destination for lovers

3. Sen’nan Marble Beach (Osaka): A favored destination for lovers

Sen’nan Marble Beach, about an hour from Namba Station on Osaka’s Nankai Electric Railway, is a rare white marble beach. It overlooks Kansai International Airport, making it possible to watch planes taking off from Kansai Island.

The beach is Osaka Prefecture’s first certified “Lovers’ Sanctuary,” and the beach’s heart-shaped marker has become a popular photo spot for couples and families.

Along with the adjacent Tarui Southern Beach, the sunset view has been selected as one of the “100 Best Sunsets in Japan” and is a must-see. The sun sets in the same direction as Kansai International Airport, creating a fantastic scene.

Tarui Southern Beach, connected with Sennan Marble Beach to form an L-shape, is a sandy beach with a panoramic view of Kansai International Airport, and you can swim while watching the planes taking off and landing. (Closed in 2021)

Stand-alone villa in the glamping area (Urban Camp Hotel Marble Beach)

In 2020, an area of about 2 kilometers along the beach was transformed into Sennan Long Park, Kansai’s largest recreation facility, featuring a variety of ways to enjoy the outdoors.

In front of Marble Beach, there is a glamping area with a jacuzzi, independent villas with ocean views, a “marche area” where you can enjoy local food, and a community area with restaurants and cafes.

Health & Safety Measures
Barbecuing at Sen’nan Marble Beach is temporarily prohibited. Measure vary at other facilities

Services for international guests |
Sennan City has an English tourist pamphlet that includes a description of Sennan Marble Beach, the Long Park website has an English version, and there are English signs at the beach.

Recommended hotels nearby

  • Hotel Bay Gulls
    • Address Kinku Port Kita 3-5, Tajiri, Osaka Prefecture, 598-0093
      View Map
    • Nearest Station Hagurazaki Station (Nankai Line)
      17 minutes on foot

    Vacancy search, reservation

    Check with our partner site as the latest rates, rate details, and guest room requirements may vary.

  • Sen'nan Marble Beach
    泉南マーブルビーチ
    • Address Rinkuminamihama, Sennan-shi, Osaka 590-0535
    • TEL: 072-483-8191 (Sennan City Industrial Tourism Division)
      Access: Approximately 10 minutes on foot from Okadaura Station on the Nankai Main Line

4. Amanohashidate (Kyoto): One of the three most scenic spots in Japan

4. Amanohashidate (Kyoto): One of the three most scenic spots in Japan
The view from Amanohashidate Viewland

Around 3 hours by limited express train from JR Osaka Station, Amanohashidate is a scenic spot facing the Sea of Japan in northern Kyoto Prefecture. It’s known as one of the three most scenic spots in Japan, along with Matsushima in Miyagi Prefecture and Miyajima in Hiroshima Prefecture.

The views from the Kasamatsu Park observatory, where you can see Amanohashidate from the north side, and from Amanohashidate Viewland on Mt. Monju on the south side are both captivating must-sees.

The view from Kasamatsu Park

The Kasamatsu Park overlook is popular because, from that vantage point, Amanohashidate looks like a rising dragon. It’s also famous as the birthplace of the oddly named “Crotch Peep,” in which viewers bend at the waist and look back through their legs, resulting in an interesting inverted view of Amanohashidate, the sky, and the sea.

Amanohashidate has two beaches. Both offer good-quality waters, calm waves, and places to rest in the shade of the nearby pine trees.

One is Amanohashidate Beach, just a 5-minute walk from Amanohashidate Station on the Monju side, which has beautiful blue pines and white sand beaches. There are tourist attractions such as Chionji Temple and Amanohashidate Viewland in the vicinity, and after swimming, you can relax at the Chie-no-Yu hot spring.

The other, Amanohashidate Fuchu Beach, is near the Amanohashidate Activity Center, where you can enjoy watersports like sea kayaking and stand-up paddling by reservation. In 2021, the beach is open from July 22nd to August 16th.

Recommended hotels nearby

  • Genmyoan
    • Address Jimonjyu 32-1 , Miyazu, Kyoto, 626-0001
      View Map
    • Nearest Station Amanohashidate Station (Tantetsu Miyatoyo Line)
      6 minutes on foot

    Vacancy search, reservation

    Check with our partner site as the latest rates, rate details, and guest room requirements may vary.

5. Makino Sunny Beach (Shiga): Beautiful water and scenery unique to Lake Biwa

5. Makino Sunny Beach (Shiga): Beautiful water and scenery unique to Lake Biwa
Photo: PIXTA

Makino Sunny Beach, about a 2-hour train ride from JR Osaka Station, is considered the most beautiful beach on the shores of Lake Biwa. White sands and pine forests stretch for about a kilometer from Takagihama in the north to Chinaihama in the south, and were selected as one of the “100 Best White Sands and Green Pines in Japan” in 1987.

Makino Sunny Beach overlooks two more scenic spots in Chikubu Island and Kaizu Osaki, which are among Lake Biwa’s eight most scenic areas. In addition, it has a good reputation for clean water and has been selected as a “special selection” in the lake category of the Ministry of the Environment’s “100 Select Beaches.”

Photo: PIXTA
Photo: PIXTA

You can enjoy Lake Biwa’s beautiful scenery all day long, like the view of the lake from the pier, which is especially eye-catching when colored by the sunrise and sunset.

Photo: PIXTA

The lake terrace’s 13-meter tall observatory is a symbol of Takagihama and an ideal viewing point for both the lake and surrounding area throughout the year. It’s a recommended spot for taking pictures of the sunrise and sunset.

Health & Safety Measures (Takagihama)
Disinfection, sterilization, and cleaning of shops and facilities / staff wear masks, gargle, wash hands regularly, and monitor body temperature

Services for international guests (Takagihama)
Staff use tablets for translation when conversing with guests

  • Makino Sunny Beach Takagihama
    マキノサニービーチ高木浜
    • Address Makinocho Nishihama, Takashima-shi, Shiga 520-1811
    • TEL: 0740-28-1206 (Takagihama Auto Campsite), 0740-27-0325 (Chinaihama Auto Campsite)
      Access: 10-minute walk from JR Makino Station

6. Isonoura (Wakayama): Kansai’s surfing sanctuary

6. Isonoura (Wakayama): Kansai’s surfing sanctuary

Isonoura, a beach located in Nirigahama, Wakayama City, is popular among surfers in the Kansai region and is Osaka’s closest surfing area. From Osaka Namba Station, take the Nankai Main Line toward Wakayama, changing to the Kada Line at Wakayamashi Station, before getting off at Isonoura. From there, it’s just a short walk away.

It’s a popular destination for surfers, from beginners to advanced wave riders. The scene of the sunset across the ocean, palm trees, and surfers gives the beach a resort-like feel.

Isonoura has beautiful smooth, white sand and a panoramic view. The vast, shallow beach is about 1,200 meters long and 1.5 meters deep, even 100 meters from the water. During the sunbathing season (July 1st to August 31st), surfing and swimming areas are clearly marked so that beachgoers can swim safely.

There’s also a surfing school (Japanese language only). The “Beginner Course” is about 2.5 hours long and includes onshore training before entering the water. Boards and suits are available for rent, so anyone can join.

Health & Safety Measures
Disinfection, sterilization, and cleaning of shop and facilities / hand sanitizer installed / disinfection after each guest check out / proper ventilation / use of coin tray / installation of plastic partitions / staff wear masks, gargle, wash hands regularly, and monitor body temperature / limited capacity / increased space between seats / restricted admission and implementation of reservation system / entry denied to anyone feeling unwell / masks required / temperature check enforced

Recommended hotels nearby

  • Isonoura Beach Resort
    マリンパーク磯の浦
    • Address Isonoura, Wakayama, 640-0114
    • TEL: 073-452-2737 (Isonoura Beach Resort)
      Access: 1-minute walk from Isonoura Station on the Nankai-Kada Line

Although some won’t be open to the public in 2021, these Kansai beaches are relatively easy to reach from central Osaka, and the clean waterfronts and spectacular views are worth a visit.

* Information in this article is accurate as of the time of writing in June 2021. Please check official websites for the latest information.

English translation by Gabriel Wilkinson

Written by:

WESTPLAN

WESTPLAN

Kiko Matsuda, Keiko Kimura, Risa Tsuji, and a team of female writers familiar with Kansai. We love eating, drinking and traveling! We share fun information based on our experiences.

*This information is from the time of this article's publication.
*Prices and options mentioned are subject to change.
*Unless stated otherwise, all prices include tax.

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