The Japan Sea Coast is usually considered the best place to swim in Japan. The Pacific Coast is much more populated and industrialized with Japan's major cities dotting the seaside down from Tokyo to Yokohama, through Shizuoka, Nagoya and Osaka.
The Echizen Coast in Fukui Prefecture has some wonderful beaches as has Shimane and the offshore Oki Islands.
One excellent place to enjoy white sands and warm water is Iwami Seaside Park, 5km of beach between Hamada and Gotsu. If you are not enjoying the swimming and snorkeling from the white sands head for Aquas near Hamada, the largest aquarium in western Honshu and Aquas Land, a vast playground/amusement park popular with families with children.
Iwami Seaside Park is also popular with people driving north from Hiroshima. Visitors can camp or rent cabins near the beach. From Hiroshima take the Sanyo then the Chugoku Expressway and exit at Hamada I.C. From here it is less than a 15-minute drive to the beach on National Highway 9.
Express buses from the Shinkansen Exit of Hiroshima Station run to Hamada.
Iwami Seaside Park
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