Omatsuzaki is a beach that lies in North Komatsu, Shiga town, Shiga prefecture. It is a crescent shaped sand bar situated on the northern side of the Hira river mouth. It also bulges along the eastern side of Lake Biwa.
Omatsuzaki is chosen as one of the 8 scenic spots of Lake Biwa, and is known as 'Cool Breeze - Omatsuzaki White Beach'. The depth of the water suddenly changes, and the water – so clear it's as if one could catch a fish by hand – stretches far out. The view of white sand and green pines, spreading for 3km with the Hira mountain range as its backdrop, is just magnificent.
Omatsuzaki has been known as a scenic spot since olden times. In summer, it becomes the number-one leisure venue for Lake Biwa. At that time, it is crowded with people enjoying sports such as windsurfing and swimming. Omatsuzaki-no-hakutei is a scenic area that catches the heart of visitors.
There is a village on Taketomijima (Taketomi Island) that preserves much of the traditional architecture, customs and cultures of this area of Okinawa. The village is famous for its traditional houses, which were built to withstand the frequent typhoons that buffet the island.
'Shisa' (a Ryukyu decoration that looks like a dog-lion) can be seen on rooftops or walls of houses as wards against evil. The shisa of Taketomijima are unique in shape and color, all having a different, individual expression, conceived and merged from the individual customs and cultures of each area.
In 1987, the village was nominated as an Important Traditional National Preservation Area. The view from the Nagomino-Tou tower in Akayama Park, in the middle of the town, is especially worth seeing.
Also preserved at Taketomijima is an event known as the Tanedori-matsuri (festival), which has been designated as an important intangible cultural heritage.
Even today, the village embodies tradition with its stunning contrast of white sandy roads and red-brick houses surrounded by coral-studded walls and flowering hibiscus.
The Tsuda-no-matsubara is a waterfront located within Kinrin Park in Tsuda-machi, Sanuki-shi, Kagawa Prefecture. This waterfront is designated as part of the Setonaikai National Park and was built 400 years ago, on the orders of Tokugawa Ieyasu.
It is said that the name 'kinrin' derives from the sound of the sea breeze in the pine trees, which sounds like the 'kin' (or the 'koto', a traditional instrument). About 3,000 pine trees are reputed to thrive in Tsuda-no-Matsubara. Not only is the scenery exquisite, it also acts a windbreak.
Also here, are seven aged pine trees named for the Seven Gods of Fortune. Bridges lie along the trail, including the notable Negae-bashi ('Wish Bridge') and, on the way back, the Kanae-bashi ('Come True Bridge'). Legend has it that, if you recite your dreams and wishes to yourself as you cross this bridge, they will come true.
In the swimming season, the seashore, with its white sand and green pine trees, becomes lively and animated with people. This beach is cherished and revered by many people, and is sometimes used as a movie location.
Komaka Island is an uninhabited island about 800 meters in circumference and surrounded by white sandy beaches. It lies off Chinen-son in Okinawa.
This area is a must for all marine sports, including snorkeling, diving, swimming and observing the many different colorful tropical fish near the beach. During the summer, many people camp on the island, from where at night they can see the skies full of beautiful stars. From late May to fall, the heartwarming sight of migratory ajisashi (common terns) nesting on the island, laying eggs and raising chicks can be seen.
By walking around the island, nearby islands such as Kudakajima and Tsukenjima can be seen. The island is small enough to walk around in about 15 minutes, and the shallow sea stretches out far and wide.
It seems as if this island came straight out of a fairy tale, like a petite, lovely island floating on the vast open sea.