A few rather popular activities here in Japan during summer are hiking, beach surfing and picnics. I present a summer’s day in Zushi, Kanagawa, consisting of a relaxing and scenic hike at Mount Takatori (with different start and end points), finished off with a stroll in the beach.
Akita Inu are big, affectionate, hardy companions that helped people for over 1000 years in many different ways. In these times especially, at least for me, playing with an Akita Inu helped alleviate a lot of stress.
Toba is a coastal city in the prefecture of Mie, located approximately two and a half hours from Osaka. It has a population south of 20,000, and an area of 107.3 km² so it’s less than half the size of Osaka with a fraction of the people, but it does have that Japanese seaside charm.
Sado is a peaceful island situated off the coast of Niigata Prefecture. It is accessible by ferries running every hour or so between Niigata and Ryotsu Ports. If you are not worried about missing the only ferry of the day, you can also jump on in Naoetsu and get off in the little town of Ogi.
If you happen to be in Hiroshima City for visiting the Peace Memorial or shopping at Hondori, there are four perfect hiking trails to unwind yourself and stride your way to the mountain top from where you can check out the city view or nearby islands. Pack your bags, water and wear your boots, let’s go visit these spots as locals do.
On any given day, the banks of the Kamogawa are flourishing with activity, and depending on the season, you’ll find a variety of people walking dogs or cycling.
Have you ever been to a Japanese farm? There is one in Chiba that is perfect for a day trip. The Mother Farm offers entertainment for young and old alike.
Awaji Island, located just south of Kobe in Hyogo prefecture is worth putting on your itinerary if you visit Kansai. It’s connected to Honshu—Japan’s main island—by the nearly 4km long Akashi-Kaikyo Bridge.
The Ajisai Matsuri (Hydrangea Festival) is held annually from mid-June until early July in Otawara. About 6,000 hydrangea flowers bloom, awakening this isolated town into a small local festival.
Sumatakyo Valley is a rural area of Japan a few hours west of Tokyo and has so much to do off the beaten path. As you travel Japan, especially when you are in more rural areas, we highly recommend asking around for advice. That is how we found so many unique experiences on our 50-day runAway Japan adventure.