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Surfing Japan: The Top 5 Best Waves In Japan

When people hear about the best beaches for surfing, they probably have heard of places like the North Shore in Hawaii, or the Gold Coast of Australia. Believe it or not, Japan also has many beaches that are good for surfing. Here are 5 beaches where you can catch the waves in Japan.

1) Kitaizumi Beach(北泉海岸): Fukushima Prefecture

This beach is located in northeastern Fukushima Prefecture. It’s known for having waves all throughout the year and hosting international surfing competitions. Part of the facilities was damaged due to the 2011 earthquake, but has been reconstructed since then. The beach now has a parking lot, showers and bathrooms, and a camping ground nearby. During the summer, surfers from across the country visit for the waves.

Kitaizumi Beach(北泉海岸)

Address: Jizōdō, Haramachiku Kitaizumi, Minamisōma-shi, Fukushima Prefecture  975-8686
Access: 11 minutes by car from JR Kashima Station

2) Shonan Beach(湘南海岸): Kanagawa Prefecture

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This spot is close by Kamakura in Kanagawa Prefecture, and one of the most popular surfing spots near Tokyo. There are many introductory surfing schools, and many professionals swim out to catch the waves early in the morning. There are also many surfing gear shops on the beach. When the weather is fair, you can see Mount Fuji across the ocean. It’s a good idea to drop by and tour around the city of Kamakura after, as the two locations are close to one another.

Shonan Beach(湘南海岸)

Address: 4 Chome−4, Kugenumakaigan, Fujisawa-shi, Kanagawa Prefecture  251-0037
Access: 5 minutes by foot from JR Kugenuma-Kaigan Station

3) Kujukuri Beach(九十九里海岸): Chiba Prefecture

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This is one of Japan’s biggest beaches, spanning across 66 kilometers on the coast of Chiba Prefecture. Kujukuri’s waves are said to be quite stable, making it a renowned surfing spot. The beach hosts national and international-level competitions, where professionals show off their skills. Seafood restaurants and aquatic sport goods stores are also near the beach. There are also introductory-level surfing schools nearby, so it’s a perfect location if you’re thinking of learning how to surf.

Kujukuri Beach(九十九里海岸)

Address: Kitaimaizumi, Oamishirasato, Chiba Prefecture  299-3201
Access: 22 minutes by foot from JR Kugenuma-Kaigan Station

4) Aoshima Beach(青島ビーチ): Miyazaki Prefecture

Aoshima Beach is located in Miyazaki Prefecture, on the southern island of Kyushu. It’s known for having warmer waters, allowing surfers to hit the waves without boots and gloves during the winters. Attracted to the warmer climate, some surfers even migrate to live in Miyazaki! There are many restaurants and shops nearby, and the adjacent Aoshima Beach Park host festivals, bringing tourists to the beach throughout the year.

Aoshima Beach(青島ビーチ)

Address: 2-233, Aoshima, Miyazaki-shi, Miyazaki Prefecture  889-2162
Access: 5 minutes by foot from Aoshima Station

5) Amami Oshima Island(奄美大島): Kagoshima Prefecture

Amami-Oshima is an island located between Kagoshima (a prefecture located on the southern tip of Kyushu) and the Okinawa islands, and accessible by direct flight from Narita, Haneda, and Kansai International airports. There’s also a ferry that sails from Kagoshima (it takes 11 hours to get to the island). It’s a beautiful, warm, emerald beach with coral reefs, and you can spot sea turtles and fish swimming by. You can also enjoy other aquatic activities, like canoeing around the mangroves, snorkeling, and fishing.

Amami Oshima Island(奄美大島)

Address: Tatsugo, Oshima District, Kagoshima Prefecture 894-0411
Access: JAL and its subsidiary airlines operate one or two flights a day to Amami Oshima from multiple cities in Japan including Tokyo (about 2.5 hours), Osaka (about 2 hours), Fukuoka (about 90 minutes), Kagoshima (about 1 hour) and Naha (about 1 hour)

Many of the local surfers abide by local rules and manners—while we hope you enjoy surfing at these beaches, make sure to be courteous and follow relevant rules. Happy surfing!  

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Koki Miyashita

Author & Editor