A white sandy beach and a southern resort feeling with palm trees and a stunning sunset make Shirahama Beach located at the southern tip of the Kii Peninsula an excellent alternative to flying out to Hawaii. Actually Shirahama Beach and Waikiki Beach have a good-will sister-beach relationship, and I wonder whether the white sand is also from Hawaii. In March only a few people stroll along the beach but in summer this place is popular with weekend tourists from Kansai. Book in at a hotel by the beach and you just have to cross the road for a plunge into the water. Even better: you can combine your beach holiday with onsen pleasures: Shirahama is one of Japan's oldest and still best onsen resorts.
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Celebrating my 10th year anniversary in Japan in May 2018, the country that I call home now. I lived in crazy Tokyo for 6 years and since 2011 I call the Kii Peninsula (Kumano, Koyasan and Yoshinoyama) my home. I have visited all 47 prefectures of Japan and for the last 4 years I have worked as a guide for foreign visitors. My special interest is in Japanese nature and spirituality. I love spending time in the forest and mountains and I love visiting temples and shrines. I am also a licensed guide for the Kumano Kodo pilgrimage trails and for Koyasan, the Buddhist monastery, in addition to being a practitioner and guide for Shinrin Yoku (Forest Therapy). In recent years I have taken visitors to walk the Kumano Kodo trails, the Nakasendo trail, the 88 temple pilgrimage trail around Shikoku Island and to Dewa Sanzan, the three sacred mountains in Yamagata Prefecture. If you look for nature and spirituality in your trip to Japan, then Wakayama, Nara and Yamagata Prefectures are ideal places to get started!