Kikugahama Beach, Hagi
With the rainy season predicted to be over by the end of July, it’s time to start looking for a great beach in your area where you can relax and go for a swim. If you are in the Yamaguchi Prefecture, then Hagi’s Kikugahama Beach is definitely not something that you should miss! Unlike your typical image of a beach, crowded with thousands of people, Kikugahama Beach is pretty secluded and not visited by that many people at all, which makes it the perfect place for those of you who don’t like to feel like a school of sardines.
The most likely reason why Kikugahama has retained its very natural look is probably because Hagi is not a city that attracts a huge amount of tourists during the summer season. Personally, I think that this is a shame because it is a beautiful, old samurai town with a great castle and delicious food, but on the other hand, it’s beaches remain beautiful and surrounded by nature specifically because people have not affected them.
The entire coast around Hagi is stunning, but this particular part of it has a very paradise-like feel to it, and remains very peaceful even during the peak summer season. The mountain that you see in the pictures is called Mt. Shizuki. The beach has a large sand area, but also many trees that are a great place to hide from the Sun when the temperatures go a bit too high. There are no restrictions on the area in which you can settle down on the beach, as no part of it is solely owned by a private property. I personally like the area right in front of the high school because the sand is at its widest point there.
When it comes to swimming, even though I haven’t seen any warning signs on the beach, I would still urge people to not go too deep into the sea. The water is crystal clear and beautiful, but that also means that you can see quite a few fish and crabs roaming around on the bottom of it. If you go into the water up to your waist area, there should be no problems. But once you go deeper you start to see the stunning, but sometimes freaky, sea life on the bottom. My advice would be to not use this part of the sea for swimming exercises, but more as a way to cool off. But then again, I tend to think this about all beaches in Japan... just in case. Also, the jellyfish season is in August, so keep an eye out for them!
There is plenty of parking space in the area. Some of it will be free, but the parking spot right in front of the beach is about 00 yen for the whole day during the peak season in mid-July and August. There aren’t many restaurants or cafes next to the beach, but there is a small restaurant near the high school if you are looking for a bite. My personal recommendation would be to first visit the beautiful Hagi Castle which is only 600 meters away from the beach and to have a meal at one of the many delicious traditional Japanese restaurants in the area. Hagi is a very small town, and you would easily be able to walk through most of it on a somewhat longer stroll.
There is nothing commercial about Kikugahama Beach. No bars, no music, no hotels, nothing that would intrude the nature around it. It really is a beautiful place to relax alone or with friends, and to enjoy a sunny weekend. Having said that, it is not a place to throw a beach party of course or to listen to music very loudly as this would attract quite a few stares, and probably annoy the fisherman in the area. This is a remarkable place to enjoy your summer. And most importantly, please remember to keep the beach clean and to take all of your stuff with you when you leave so as not to ruin this beautiful part of the Yamaguchi Prefecture.