Japan has long been known as the land of the rising sun, but as daylight draws to a close around the island nation, there are sunsets so spectacular you’d be forgiven for thinking this was the land of the setting sun instead. But how do you find the best places to view these spectacular sunsets? For many Japanese, the travel site Jalan has all the answers.
As one of the country’s leading travel sites, Jalan offers tour and hotel reservations around Japan, and in an effort to provide the best services for travellers, they recently surveyed more than 500 users to find their favourite sunset spots around the nation.
So let’s get to it and take a look at the 10 best places to watch a sunset. From up north to the very south of the country, these truly are some spectacular locations.
10. Daikanzan (Kanagawa Prefecture)
From this scenic spot you can see Lake Ashi, the Hakone mountains, and World Heritage-listed Mount Fuji all in one sweeping view. Add the beauty of a setting sun to the scene and it makes it look as if Mt Fuji is floating in a sea of clouds.
9. Ningyo-iwa (Kagoshima Prefecture)
This is a superb location to watch the sun dip into the East China Sea. The head-shaped boulder gives this rock formation its unusual name – “Ningyo-iwa” translates to “Doll Rock” – and if you position yourself just right, you’ll be able to see the rays of the setting sun emanating from behind the doll’s head as it goes down.
8. Byobugaura (Chiba Prefecture)
This 10-kilometer stretch of coastal cliffs has been likened to the White Cliffs of Dover on the English coast. While it’s stunning at any time of day, it takes on an extra special beauty in the evening as the sun sets.
7. Cape Manzamo (Okinawa Prefecture)
Manzamo is becoming increasingly popular with tourists, who come to admire the elephant-nose shaped rock here, which is made of local Ryukyu limestone. Covered in natural grass and coastal plants, it’s a beautiful site to watch the sun as it sets on the horizon.
6. Forest Observatory of the Setting Sun (Niigata Prefecture)
From this spot you can take in a vast view of the Sea of Japan. The sunsets here are particularly beautiful as the golden hues of the sun and sky are reflected in the water, enhancing the intense colours.
5. Iwami Tatamigaura (Shimane Prefecture)
As well as being an area of scenic beauty, this site is revered for its geological importance as it was created when the sea floor was raised by an earthquake. The raised beach, also known as “Senjojiki” (“thousand mats”) due to its 5-hectare size, also includes fossil remains, and reflects the sky like a mirror at low tide.
4. Sasagawa Nagare (Niigata Prefecture)
This rugged 11-kilometer stretch of coastline is known for its yellow-sand beaches and expansive ocean views. When the sun dips, though, the golden reflection of the sun stretches out in a huge column on the surface of the water out towards the horizon.
3. Sunayama Beach (Okinawa Prefecture)
This beach is widely considered to be Miyako Island’s most beautiful, and at the end of the day as the sun sinks behind the natural rock formation, it becomes even more stunning.
2. Godzilla Rock (Akita Prefecture)
This unusual rock bears a striking resemblance to Godzilla at any time of the day, but as the sun sets, it creates an image that makes it look as if Godzilla is breathing out a fireball.
1. Chichibugahama Beach (Kagawa Prefecture)
And at number one on the list of the best places to watch a sunset in Japan is this stunning site, which has been been likened to Salar de Uyuni, the famous salt lake in Bolivia. At low tide the beach turns into a giant mirror, and if you catch it in the evening, it creates one of the most spectacular sunsets you’ll ever see.
So there you have it – the top 10 places to enjoy a sunset in Japan. Have you been to any on the list? Let us know in the comments below!
Source, images: Jalan© SoraNews24