Ochiishi-misaki Wetland spreads on the plateau-shaped small cape protruding into the Pacific Ocean at the base of Nemuro Peninsula in the eastern part of Hokkaido. It is designated as the prefecture’s Natural Environment Preservation District. The wetland is known as the southernmost boundary of Lapland rosebay (Rhododendron parvifolium), which produces little flowers in June. Other rare plants such as skunk cabbage, Hakusanchidori (Orchis aristata) and hare’s tail cotton grass can be seen.
Walking through the wetland and the swamp forest of red pine trees along the wooden trail, you will get to a light house, which is located at the easternmost end of Japan. From there, you can command a panoramic view including unending stretch of the green carpet of the wetland, the dynamic coastline of continuing cliffs and the far-off horizon in the Pacific Ocean.
As a part of natural preservation district, there are no man-made structures, so you can enjoy natural landscapes that remain intact here.
“Isaribi” is a Japanese term for fishing lights, or fish attraction lights, seen from the shore. In modern Japan, it usually refers to the lights of cuttlefish fishing boats seen during the summer.
During the harvest season, the horizon is lined with brilliant fishing lights. Dozens of lights look like jewels illuminating the dark surface of the sea and create a really fantastic sight.
Many people feel the coming of summer when they see isaribi on the horizon. Isaribi look beautiful on fine evenings of course, but they create an even more mysterious, or dreamy, atmosphere on the misty evenings.
Shokanbetsu-tenuriyagishiri National Park, in Ishikari, the western part of central Hokkaido, was designated a park in 1990. Ruran Shore is located inside the park.
Ruran means 'path that god walks on' in the language of the native Ainu people of Hokkaido. Solid rocks appear to be cut from the shore and the cliffs are so mysterious you cannot help thanking the ancestors who named the shore. Many of the rocks along here have strange rugged shapes and are lined with cracks.
Some of the many beauty spots on Ruran Shore include Yoshitsune's Tears Rock and Amoi Cave, as well as caves along the cliffs. Nature has produced some glorious views.
This shore is also well-known for its beautiful evening sunsets. You will be moved and tremble at the beauty of the sight. Strange rocks become red as they are lit up by the evening sun setting on the far horizon. This is indeed the twilight time of the Ainu god.
Cape Soya in Wakkanai City is the northernmost point of Japan. It is located at 45°31’ N, where the monument of the Northernmost Point of Japan is erected. This triangular piramid monument was designed in the motif of North Star as the symbol of the northern country. Its acute angle in the flame of sunset touches the heart of many travelers who are lured to visit this place by the fascinating image of the word “the northernmost point.”
As the walking trail is provided, visitors can walk around the cape while viewing cows leisurly grazing in the pastureland. On a fine day, you can see Sakhalin Island only 43 km away on the horizon. Thinking that it’s a foreign island, you will realize you are standing at the very end of the country.
Azechi Point is a small peninsula located to the west of Kiritappu Peninsula, in the vicinity of Kiritapp Town of Eastern Hokkaido. It protrudes out over the sea as if it is watching over Biwako Bay.
Azechi Point is known to have a spectacular sweeping view of the beautiful shore lines of Biwako Bay and Hamanaka Bay and, facing the Pacific Ocean, has an expansive view of table shaped islands unique to this region.
From the point visitors can observe closely the island well known as a nesting ground for the rare Tufted Puffin as well as Kenpokki Island, which is a breeding ground for numerous sea birds including Japanese Cormorants. Numerous strangely shaped rocks appear and disappear under the raging waves of the Pacific Ocean.
Visiting the point in the early morning is also worthwhile. In season, visitors can see a dynamic scene of fleets of kelp catching ships racing each other towards the ocean.
Sunset is also spectacular; the scene of the island and the ocean glowing red reflecting the crimson colored sun setting down over the Pacific Ocean is much loved by locals.
Azechi Point is a place where the visitor can indulge in the spectacle of nature from the moment the day dawns to the last minutes of the sun setting on the horizon.
Dharma sunset is a natural phenomenon peculiar to the sea in Sukumo City, Kochi Pref. in winter. As the sunset while the atmospheric temperature drops abruptly, the water temperature drops only gradually. Here in Kochi, as Black Stream reaches the shore, the temperature of water surface is high even in winter, which widens the temperature difference between the atmosphere and the sea surface. Therefore, moisture vapor coming up from the sea makes a layer in the air above the sea at the sunset. When the sun light reflects in the layer, there emerges another sun on the sea surface, which creates the Dharma-like double sunset. The Dharma, however, quickly begins to take a shape of an inverted bowl and disappears into the horizon in a few seconds. You’ll have good luck if you can get a chance to worship at Dharma of the sea.
Chiri-hama Beach is an approximately 8 kilometer-long white sand beach from Imahama in Oshimizu-cho to the southern part of Hakui City in Noto Peninsula, Ishikawa Pref. Along the beach line grow black pine trees, which were planted in the Edo period to prevent blown sand, as well as variety of seaside plants such as rugosa roses and sea bindweed. The beach is shallow enough for swimming and gathering of clams. The sand on this beach is so fine that even a motor coach can run on the beach. The particle diameter of the ordinary beach sand is about 0.5 mm, while that of the sand on Chiri-hama Beach is a quarter of the ordinary size. For this reason, the seawater can easily permeate into the beach, which makes each grain of sand compacted together to form a solid beach. Driving on the beach in the sea breeze is what you can enjoy at no other place than here at Chiri-hama beach. The sun setting in the Sea of Japan is magnificent. The sea and the sky with the horizon in between change their colors from blue to purple, then orange to vermillion.
Right before your eyes is the Pacific. On either side, runs the continuous line of the horizon.This is the view from the cliff of Erimo Cape, located to the south of the Hidaka Mountains in Hokkaido. Rock reefs spread for 2km off the coast.Erimo cape is said to be where the wind is strongest in Japan. Cold and hot currents in the sea converge at this point, and the temperature difference often causes fog. In winter, it is extremely cold.Here, 400 Zanigata seals have adaptedto the harsh natural environment, making this one of the most famous breeding places for the seals. The seals are called Zenigata seals, because of the patterns on their fur that look like zeni (coins with a hole). Hakusan-chidori, a plant which is tough enough to survive the extreme cold, blossoms during the short spring and heals us.In the sea, kelp grows abundantly, offering fish a place to lay their eggs .Such an environment as this, in fact, is a harbor for life forms that have adjusted to the harsh natural conditions. This area is known as the Hidaka Mountains Erimo National Park