Japan's secrets are still being revealed to foreigners, who little by little, are catching on that the land of the rising sun has something for everyone.
Off the normal travel circuit for foreigners, Miyazaki-ken has a lot to offer, and in the hot summer months the cool breezes and deep blue seas become very appealing. The coastline of Miyazaki also offers some of the best surfing in Japan, and it may just give adventurous travelers another reason to get on the plane.
The Miyazaki area is located on Kyushu, the southern most of Japan's 4 main islands. The main city is Miyazaki City, population 350,000, and it offers a wide array of hotels, restaurants, and bars. There are many things to see and do in the region; you can visit the famous Udo-shrine, Aya castle, or the world's highest suspension bridge
The real beauty of the area lies in its natural environments. The Pacific Ocean is never far from view, and the southern highways meander through quaint fishing port towns, nestled between the crashing waves and the deep greens of thickly forested mountains. In addition, when it comes to mountains there are some big ones! The Ebino plateau has several peaks that are worthy of a climb. The fact that one is an active volcano just adds to the intrigue.
Surfing in Miyazaki
The jewel in Miyazaki's crown for adventure enthusiasts is its waves. The whole area has great surfing, from Nobeoka in the north, right down to Nichinan. Surfing can be done all year round, but you have more chance of finding big waves between August and October because of the Typhoon season swells. The water is also nice and warm at this time.
If you need surfing equipment in Miyazaki you will have no trouble finding it. The local population is mad keen on surfing and surf shops dot the highways and cities.
The main spots for surfing include Kizaki-Hama and Aoshima near Miyazaki city, and further north you will find an active surf scene at Kanegahama and Okuragahama. All these spots are beach breaks with a sand bottom. They are good for all levels of surfer and you will often find large crowds of surfers here, especially on the weekends.
For more skilled surfers who want a challenge, they will want to try the Nichinan area, which has numerous reef breaks that produce powerful waves. If you are not familiar with the area or the lingo, it can be a bit tricky to figure out which spots to go to, so if you want to make sure you get the best possible waves, contact Typhoon Surf Tours. They can arrange a 10-day surf adventure for you.
If the surfs not good in Miyazaki, there are also plenty of other adventures to be had. The mountainous terrain has many fun hikes, ranging from easy to challenging, and the many rivers create some tranquil swimming holes for a cooling dip. Of course, there are many Onsets as well if you prefer a hot soak.
Kayaking and Scuba Diving opportunities also abound in the clear waters of the south, and several operators can take you out for a day on the sea.
When to Go
Whether you are a surfer or not, summer is a great time to be in Miyazaki. Why not escape the urban areas and cool down beside the ocean? Those chasing the big waves will want to come in September or October.
How to Get There
Both JAL and ANA have many daily flights to Miyazaki Airport from most major cities across Japan. It is about 1.5 hours from Tokyo.
Where to Stay
This will depend on your budget. Miyazaki city has several business hotels for around 6000yen per night, the Aoshima and Seagaia areas have some more luxurious options. For those on a tight budget, try the YHA in Miyazaki city.
To pack as much adventure as possible into your trip, you will need a car. The train system will not get you far off the beaten track. Rental cars can be arranged at Miyazaki Airport. To find your way around you might need a good map. Stop by the Miyazaki International Centre in Miyazaki City and they will help you out.